Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 05/22/10 at 10:34 AM ET
What now is to regroup and come back with the same effort. There’s really nothing else we can do. I was really happy with the way our team played to a man, whether it was from goaltender, D man, forwards. We made a few mistakes. They scored some goals. I thought it was a helluva game.
The reality is we’re down 3-0. Happened a week ago with two good teams playing and Philadelphia found a way to come back, so there’s something to draw in there. Plus the fact that we’ve been in this series I think for every minute. That’s got to leave us feeling good.
But we know we’re in a hole and we’ve got to dig our way out.
-San Jose Sharks Coach Todd McLellan after the game last night.
More from Todd…
Q. Four goals over the last two games for Patrick Marleau. Describe what you’re seeing from him.
COACH McLELLAN: You know, I’ve had the pleasure of seeing Patty play now for 200some games, 160 games anyhow, and that’s as good as I’ve seen him play. Determined, committed, working real hard all over the rink. Real proud of him. He needs to bring it again.
Q. Can you break down the last goal for us.
COACH McLELLAN: It was a breakdown in D zone coverage. They did a really good job of keeping the puck alive at the blueline. Released it behind the net. We jumped down with our centerman, Scottie. They basically looked at net front, Byfuglien got lost out high out in the zone and one-timed it into the net. I don’t know if we can blame one individual. Collectively, we shouldn’t have allowed the puck to come in there free. And we’ve got to be aware of the shooter. The guy behind the net is not dangerous. Always the guy in the slot is.
Q. You always talk about these games revolving around special teams. You got the one power-play goal. There were a lot of missed opportunities.
COACH McLELLAN: If there was a part of our game that we have to go back and improve, we had opportunities the third period on the power-play where we could have either got the lead or established ourselves in the game, and we didn’t do that. I’d like to see our power-play a little bit sharper.
Remember, they’re a very good penalty-killing team. They’ve got this far because of it.
Q. Why can’t you get over the hump against these guys?
COACH McLELLAN: Well, we’re still on the hump. I don’t think we’re quite under it yet. You know what, it’s good hockey. There’s four teams left. Sometimes the bounces go your way, sometimes they don’t.
I can’t walk in the dressing room tomorrow and approach that group and say they didn’t give an effort, they didn’t work hard, they didn’t give us everything they had. It’s pretty simple: it just didn’t go our way tonight.
We had enough looks at the net. You know, what we have to do now is bottle that game up, find a way to score one more than they do on Sunday afternoon.
Q. It’s simple, but is Niemi just playing that well?
COACH McLELLAN: He’s playing well, there’s no doubt about it. But, again, I think Dany Heatley had a great opportunity. Ryane Clowe had a great opportunity. They’re both very good goal-scorers. Didn’t get the puck up. He’s very quick, very athletic down low. Made some tremendous saves for them.
Nabby in our goal was very solid when we needed him. It was a very well-played game by both teams.
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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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