January 9: Bus texts with Stothers

Ecstatic to be using the new graphic for the first edition of “Bus texts with Stothers” in 2016. This graphic comes courtesy of Tim from IronSight|Design. Huge thanks and stick taps to Tim! You can follow him on Twitter at @ironsightdesign.

After every Reign road game I’ll try to catch up with head coach Mike Stothers from the bus to get some comments via texts and his assessment of the game. Here’s what he had to say after Saturday’s shutout loss in Bakersfield.

Condors 4, Reign 0
Bakersfield scored three goals in the second period, two by Jordan Oesterle, and the Reign were shut out for a second time at Rabobank Arena this season. Goalie Eetu Laurikainen picked up a shutout in his first game since October, making 30 saves and the Reign ran into discipline issues, taking seven minor penalties.

ORI: Discipline issues seemed to creep back in tonight. What’d you think was the biggest issue for you guys tonight?
Stothers: Seven minor penalties tonight. We took eleven minor penalties the last meeting vs Bakersfield. So yes, discipline is an issue against these guys. The last time we won faceoffs and were able to clear the zone. Tonight we never won a draw, and spent the whole two minutes defending. Therefore there is not a lot of gas left in the tank for 5 on 5 or our PP. You have to start with the puck otherwise you are chasing it all night.
ORI: What’d you think of Adrian Kempe and Derek Forbort and did that second-day fatigue you mentioned become a reality?
Stothers: It would not be fair to ask me what I thought of them, or anyone, other than Budaj. Budaj was terrific!! The rest can, and needed to be better!
ORI: Looked like a one point Nic Dowd was hobbling off and then went back out. But then he didn’t play much late. You rarely sit him. Was he hurt when you went to Ryan Horvat there?
Stothers: I sat a lot of guys toward the end, not just Dowd. Went with two lines when the game was officially out of reach after they scored the fourth one. We killed a lot of penalties and some guys’ minutes were way too high for back-to-back games. No sense running the risk of injury due to fatigue, a hit or blocked shot. Some of the younger guys got a chance to extend their minutes. As a coach it allows you to evaluate how they play until the final buzzer.

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