Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Craig Berube Today

via the NHL PR department,

Q. The power play, is there anything you can do at this point systems-wise, personnel-wise?
CRAIG BERUBE: We kind of shuffled things around, moved guys different spots. I thought the adjustments we made for Game 6 at home, we had good looks. But I know we need results. I get that.

We just got to do a better job of better shot selection, better screens, score a couple dirty goals around the net. Like Rask, he's in good position most of the time. They do a good job with their penalty kill. It's going to take a couple dirty goals, better net presence, screens, finding rebounds. Outnumber them at the net a little bit more, try to get a couple dirty goals.

Q. Overall did you get inside enough on them?
CRAIG BERUBE: No, not second and third opportunities. I think we had good opportunities initially, but second and third opportunities we could probably get inside a little bit more.

But I'll give them credit. They did a good job collapsing, protecting the net and their goalie.

Q. Game 7 speaks for itself. Any part of you that has to tell your guys to get over the disappointment of not doing it at home?
CRAIG BERUBE: They're already over it. Every kid, every player dreams about a Game 7. They probably played a hundred of them in their heads already as a kid or even adult, whatever. That's over with, Game 6. They've moved on from that already.

Q. Why have you played so well on the road? How is it going to serve you well?
CRAIG BERUBE: Like I said before, we had a lot of practice on the road in January and February. I think that really helped a lot.

We play a simple style of hockey: getting pucks deep, forechecking, that kind of thing. I think that goes along with our road success, how we play.

Q. What did you think of Robert Thomas’s return to his line?
CRAIG BERUBE: It was tough for him, first game back. That's a big game. Obviously they didn't get a whole lot of time up there, so it's hard to evaluate it that much.

Q. Do you stay with him?
CRAIG BERUBE: We'll see tomorrow. We'll see on game day.

Q. You talked about the simple approach you take with the road games. This is a whole different animal, winner take all. How do you get them to stay in that same approach, knowing the magnitude of the game?
CRAIG BERUBE: Yeah, I mean, you're going to be nervous. That's natural. You should be. It means you care and you want to do well. But once you drop the puck, you get a shift in or two shifts in, that goes away, you just play hockey. That's what it really boils down to.

It's just about the effort and competitiveness and getting some bounces, winning your one-on-one battles. That kind of stuff is what you focus on out there.

Q. You have won in a lot of different scenarios to get to where you are. Seems like you do well when you got it right in front of you, know what you have to do. Do you agree with that?
CRAIG BERUBE: Well, there's been times where that does happen, for sure. We respond pretty well to adversity. When it's on the line, we tend to get good results. That's what we're hoping for tomorrow obviously.

Again, it's going to be a tough game, for sure. We got to put in the effort. You got to execute. That's what it boils down to, executing. Again, maybe getting a couple bounces here and there. It really boils down to execution.

Q. Binnington is 7-2 after a playoff loss. Talk about what makes him so good after a loss.
CRAIG BERUBE: Just like our team, he gets through it, gets on with it, moves on, focuses on the next game. He's done a good job of that, being levelheaded, understanding that things always don't go your way, you don't get the bounces all the time. I think that's why he's responded well to that.

Q. Describe the impact of Ryan O'Reilly on the series all 200 feet.
CRAIG BERUBE: Yeah, he's been a great player, no doubt. Again, I thought he had a real good Game 6. He's moving really well out there, looks like he has a lot of jump in his step. Obviously his work ethic, his ability with the puck and stuff like that, he's been great.

We need him to keep being great for one more game.

Q. He's played a lot of hockey.
CRAIG BERUBE: Yeah, he has played a lot of hockey. A lot of guys have played a lot of hockey. But he's a worker. He loves it, loves the work. That's what drives him, makes him a great player.

Q. Good to get Barbashev back? Any areas you noticed last night you felt he would have helped out?
CRAIG BERUBE: Well, that line, when they're all together, they have great chemistry for sure. That line will be more effective, I would assume, with Barbashev back. He's probably our most physical player up front.

I think we can be more physical than we were last game. That will help in penalty killing. Just being the player he is, that line, we can use them against anybody and they can do the job.

Q. Why don't you think you were maybe as physical as you had been?
CRAIG BERUBE: Well, I don't know. Who knows what goes on, what goes through guys' heads, things like that.

A lot of times you just don't get there in time to make the contact. You don't want to chase it, but when it's there, you're on your toes. I think a lot of it personally, just watching the game today, our puck placement wasn't great to make the hits, things like that. Also, too, I mean, maybe it runs through their head they don't want to take a penalty, making a bad hit.

We got to be aggressive. That's our style. That's the way we have success.

Q. Were you okay with the Schenn hit?
CRAIG BERUBE: No, that's a tough hit. That's a penalty. I'm not going to sit here and say it's not a penalty. It's a tough play all around.

Q. Talk about what Boston has been doing to take away Jaden Schwartz, how successful they've been slowing him down.
CRAIG BERUBE: Yeah, I don't know if they're really slowing him down. I think he's getting looks. He's just not scoring. Rask is playing well, that's for sure, making the saves.

Again, I'll talk about second and third opportunities. We got to be better at getting on the inside a little bit more and getting some second and third looks around the net. That's how you're going to score against these guys and Rask.

Q. Can you go in there with the mentality shooting for rebounds like Game 4?
CRAIG BERUBE: Yeah, sure. That is a good thought process. On the power play, shooting for the rebounds, shooting for guys getting to the net, being around the net, finding some dirty goals around there, so... That's definitely in the back of our minds, for sure.

Q. Game 7, there's been a lot of discussion about trying to not be penalized, what is penalty, what’s not a penalty... Does that discussion go out the window in a Game 7?

CRAIG BERUBE: I don't think we really think about that, to be honest with you. We just got to go play. Like I said, everybody's going to be nervous. You got to get out there and get a couple shifts in, get that under your belt, then you just play hockey.

Again, we got to play our game. We're an aggressive, physical hockey team, forecheck, get on the forecheck. That's the way we play. That's the way we got to play Game 7.

Q. Any advantage to being on the road for this game, away from all the hubbub, what you saw in St. Louis?
CRAIG BERUBE: There was a lot of action going on in St. Louis, that's for sure, yesterday. I don't know. I really don't have the answer to that. I mean, you could say yes, like you don't have so much around you. Who knows how many family, friends people have in town, things like that. Yeah, I guess when you look at it that way, it could be an advantage.

You know, I don't know if that has a lot to do with it.
 

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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