Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Alanah McGinley on 05/21/11 at 08:38 PM ET
Q. Claude, is there one thing in your mind that stands out the most that went wrong? Was it just a total combination of a lot of things?
COACH JULIEN: Well, I would call it probably more we just lost our focus here. Played really well in the first period not because of what the score was, but we did the right things. And we took that lead.
The message was pretty clear. We had to continue playing the same way. But somehow we started getting stretched out again. They started getting speed. They started getting momentum.
And after they scored a few goals, we almost looked like we were paralyzed out there. Just weren’t reacting, weren’t moving, and just snowballed from there.
Q. A lot of times second period passes weren’t connecting coming out of your own end. It seemed like that was—was that a symptom, was that what led to it? And the other thing was faceoffs, 40 percent, that’s not typical of your team. Is that…
COACH JULIEN: Well, it’s indicative a little bit of the type of game we played in. In the first period we were doing okay on faceoffs.
David had a tough night in the faceoff circle, and I think that kind of identified the type of game he had tonight. And wasn’t the type of game we’re used to seeing David play.
And we had some mistakes tonight that were clearly of our own doing. The first goal, miscommunication. And we made some bad decisions. We got stretched out in the neutral zone there and they attacked with three guys with speed and we didn’t have a good gap.
All the things we had done well the game before and in the first period of tonight was, again, kind of slipped and by the time you kind of get yourself going, a lot of damage is done.
But I didn’t feel our players—a lot of our players did not play their best game tonight. And we are a team that when we’re at our best, we win battles, and we win races and we’re strong on the puck.
And from the second period on, I don’t think we spent that much time in our own end compared to what we’re used to.
Q. Is it a lack of effort or execution that you guys didn’t have the faceoff numbers that you wanted today?
COACH JULIEN: A little bit of everything here. Execution, some simple passes, didn’t seem that simple for us tonight at times. And execution was certainly one of those things.
Sometimes when you start feeling the pressure, those kind of things start happening and it kind of snowballs, and you try to relax your guys and get them to execute well. I think a lot of damage was done in that second period.
And we had all intentions of coming out in the third and playing to win, but it took one mistake and they ended up scoring a winner.
Q. I know it’s tough to look at positives right now, but can you talk about Bergeron and the game he had and he seems not to miss a beat.
COACH JULIEN: Bergie has been good for us. No issues with his game. That’s the kind of player you rely on game in, game out. And you hope a lot of players take his example, because that’s what we need. And that’s what we didn’t get tonight.
Q. Claude, the nature of those goals for you guys, a couple of them were a bad pass, a gift here and there. Could the nature of those goals have led to some sort of a let-down, do you think?
COACH JULIEN: As far as in the second period, there’s no doubt. Like if you’re going to win games at this stage of the season, you certainly have to look at 60-minute effort.
And it could be effort. It could be focus, whatever you want to call it. And I don’t think we had the focus tonight for 60 minutes because you know second period clearly showed that.
Q. Kaberle makes a block, I think it’s the 4-3 goal. He makes a block and then five or six seconds it’s in the net. Was he trying to come off after that block or in the midst of that block? What was happening there?
COACH JULIEN: I haven’t really had a good chance to have a look at it. And I can’t really answer you right now. There’s a lot of things going through my mind at the time. And then getting ready for the next line change, and obviously that puck was probably—shouldn’t have gone through the middle at that point, and it got intercepted. And we got guys heading up the ice and all of a sudden it’s turned over and you’re putting on the brakes and coming back against the grain here.
So it’s not something that we’ve encouraged our players to do, that’s for sure.
Q. This was such an off night for Krejci at the faceoff circle and overall minus 3. Anything to that point getting him rung up there in the last game center ice?
COACH JULIEN: No, no, not at all. Even his line after two periods had no shot on net. Ended up with two shots in the third period. But there’s more than David on that line. I think it was a tough night for their line tonight. And we know what impact they have for a hockey club when they’re on. And tonight was a tough night for that line.
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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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