On how he addresses the team about how to face its current challenges:
Well, I’ve said all along that it’s been a challenging year from that personnel standpoint, and we’ll just continue to do it. It’s not like we fell off the face of the earth, or we’re not in a playoff spot or we’re not fighting for a playoff spot. We are, and we’ve managed to do that to this point, and that’s what we’ll continue to do. It’s pretty clear. It’s not like there’s an unknown when you get somebody back. That’s one thing that we’ve known all along – everything that’s gone on – is we’ve known a pretty good timeline on it.
On whether the NHL is a tough league to stay “consistent” in:
I think it depends what you call ‘consistent.’ [Reporter: I guess in terms of the swings of goal differentials that we’ve seen the last little while from game to game.] Well, we’ve given up more lately. I think most teams will go through that. You’ll go through a four or five-game thing where you want your goaltending to be better, you want your penalty killing to be better, you want your top guys to be better, or you want your fourth line to be better, or something like that. Any inconsistency with our team has been from goal scoring, not the other way. It’s clearly that. And even though one of our goals this year was to try and be a higher scoring team and not lose anything the other way, the foundation of good clubs is how you play in your own zone. At the end of the day, to be successful in the National Hockey League is how you play in your own zone. That’s clear, with and without the puck. For the most part, we do that. You know what? It doesn’t really affect anything with our locker room. We’ve managed to get to this point and done a good job of it, and that’s what we’ll continue to do.
On what the Maple Leafs have done in the “last couple of meetings”:
I haven’t been in any of their meetings. [Reporter: The games against Toronto, the last couple games. They’ve played you pretty tough.] We’ve only played ‘em once this year. It was a three-two game in there. We were into a trip part of it, and we played a good enough game.
On whether he has coached anyone like Drew Doughty, given his attributes and responsibilities:
Probably not at a young age, I didn’t coach Dion – yeah, I did – and he played a lot of minutes. I always bring up Chelios, but Chelios was in his prime. He was, when you’re looking at Shea and Dion and those guys, that’s when I was coaching him, and he was the whole deal. It wasn’t about goals and assists. It was about the whole deal. He was the penalty killer, the power play guy. He was the whole package.
On Doughty “politicking” to be used in a shootout, and whether it’ll continue:
Well, if the truth be known, I talked to him quite a while ago about that, that if we got another one, that we were using him and Trevor right away.
On having advocated the Kings forming one of the All-Star teams:
It’s true, and I believe that firmly because once you’ve gone through it, especially when they haven’t had one since the last time we won it – meaning the first time we won it – then everybody that was part of those two [teams], if you were in such a hectic schedule, I believe they all should get that opportunity. And if you think about it, in the old days, being a hockey fan, the Stanley Cup team played an All-Star team. I remember that as a boy. I remember the Toronto Maple Leafs- [Reporter: They were the last ones to do it.]
On the challenge to play quality hockey during the dog days of the season when wearing the “bull’s eye” as defending champions:
That’s a really good problem to have. That’s a really good question to be asked and it’s a really problem to have because it means that you’ve done really well and you’re still hanging on, holding in there.