On whether Jeff Carter is an “under-the-radar” player:
I think in hockey – certain coaches and management – I think everybody knows who Carts is. He was a center in Philly for the most part and then went to Columbus, but he played right wing for us for basically two years, until the [second] Cup. But we know his value in the room, and even last year, if you look at Jeff’s numbers, if Jeff’s home numbers were as good as they were in the league, if we’d had those same numbers on the road, he would have been going into the last week competing for a scoring championship, if you actually looked at it. So he’s a pretty high profile player. I’ve said it often, this team did not go three years in a row to the conference finals and two to the finals without the centermen that we had, clearly. He was a big part of that. If this team would not have acquired Jeff Carter, they probably would not have made the playoffs out there.
On Carter being a “shoot-first” player:
Well the important part of saying that when you shoot first, the guy shoots on the fly. Guys who stand still and shoot are primarily power play guys that don’t get a whole lot of five-on-five. We have examples of that. He shoots on the fly. If you talk to the goalies, guys that shoot on the fly and change their angles while they’re going full speed and carry the puck at full speed are the most difficult players to play against. [Reporter: I know as a coach, too, you always want your guys to be consistent. I know that every player isn’t always 100% the same every night, but you mostly know what you’re going to get out of him. Is that accurate, or is that what you see with him?] He’s exceptionally well-trained. That’s never been an issue, which gives him durability. Touch wood, last year I think he just missed a game because he was sick. He’s missed games before with broken bones, which takes you out of the lineup for a month or so, but if you’re talking about consistency or any of that stuff, guys who play a lot of minutes and play a lot of games are usually good players, and if you put Jeff into it, he’s played a lot of playoff games in his career already, so that adds a lot into it, too. [Reporter: He played a lot with Tyler and Tanner to start last season, but can you see how he’s rubbed off on them in positive ways?] Well, I think they work well together. Again, it goes back to when you’re talking about the shots and the speed. If you’re a good shooter and you do it at high speed, there’s usually a lot of rebounds, or you’re in the other zone a lot, and the other thing that’s really important with Jeff, he takes the puck coming out of the zone, our defensive zone, at full speed, too, which puts the defense on their heels and which makes sure that your players on the ice, including the wingers like Tyler and Looch and the defensemen, that they’re getting up there with them, because if they’re not, then they look slow. It’s the biggest part of the game is to be able to do everything at a high pace, and the most important part about a high pace is when you have the puck. When you put everybody on the ice without a puck, they’re probably all the same speed. They might skate different, but they’re all the same speed when you give ‘em the puck. It creates quite a difference on the dial.
On whether he watched Arizona-Anaheim last night:
Every second. [Reporter: Are you pretty impressed by those two rookies they have, Duclair and Domi?] They have several new players that are fast. You guys should talk about Rieder, also, you should talk about Martinook, you should talk about Brad Richardson. They’re significantly different in speed, their team, and that’s through their lineup now. For the most part, a lot of their speed up front came from 89, so now there’s five guys with that same pace. Big difference. The guys you’re talking about, hey, they should be good players. High picks. You pick guys in the top-15 in the draft, whenever they’re ready, they’re good players on every team. It’s not specific or special. Everybody who’s there was a special player coming in. That’s why they were picked as high as they were.