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Practice Day Q&A with Tampa Coach Boucher

Q.  Who is going to start in goal for you tomorrow night?

Q.  Can you give us your reasoning for that?
COACH BOUCHER:  Well, I mean, he was the guy that took us here, and that’s how I felt before last game; but like I said, I felt like it was time to give him a little breather.

And at the same time I felt that Smitty played really well.  So it’s a perfect situation to put Smitty in.  If something were to go wrong in the previous game, put a new goaltender in for a do-or-die, I don’t think it would have been a good moment for anybody.

So this is a perfect situation.  He’s going to be the only rested guy in the two teams.

Q.  When you say “breather,” what indicated—what indication did you get that he needed a breather?

COACH BOUCHER:  He’s had tremendous stretches with us.  And I remember there was one time where it wasn’t going so well.  We gave him two days off and he came back and he was outstanding after.

So he’s like everybody else.  He’s one of the hardest working guys on our team.  He puts in a lot of hours and a lot of time.  And he’s like everybody else, at some point or another just needs to breathe a little bit.

Q.  Even though the stakes are higher, it seemed to be that way in the regular season.  He would go a long ways then he’d need some time off period.

COACH BOUCHER:  Absolutely.  He needed a little break like everybody else.  Whether you’re a goaltender, defenseman or forward, I know players on both sides are getting more tired as the series are evolving.  And it’s normal.  Everybody’s expecting that.  And your most important player is your goaltender.  So he’ll be rested.

Q.  Sean Bergenheim, can you give us an update?

COACH BOUCHER:  If it was today, right now he wouldn’t be playing.  So we’ll see tomorrow.  I’ll go to church, I think.

Q.  If he doesn’t play, who does play in his place?

COACH BOUCHER:  I haven’t decided that yet.  I’ll see tomorrow.

Q.  Given all that, Sean being out now, how much does it fall on your leadership, Vinny, Marty, to kind of step up in a big game and carry you guys a little bit?
COACH BOUCHER:  You know what, it falls on everybody.  I hate to point guys out and say it’s you’ve got to be the guy and you’ve got to be the guy.  Everybody’s been the guy with us at one moment or another.  So tomorrow, it’s a team thing.  It can’t be one guy taking all this pressure on his shoulders.

It’s everybody has got to lift a load together, and we’ll see who is going to come out big tomorrow, but somebody will.

Q.  On the power play, you talked about less passing, it seemed last night, more shots, maybe more shots overall in the game; is that how you view this game coming up?

COACH BOUCHER:  Yeah, when you look at the video after we had a lot of offensive zone time.  We actually did very well on the power play, just couldn’t score.  So sometimes just a matter of little details.  A few instances where we get a shot, and other instances where there’s other plays we wanted to make that we didn’t do.

One thing’s for sure, the last two games hasn’t been a power play story for any team.  I think both penalty kills are working really hard.  And it’s a moment where, with the power play, probably score that goal, second goal, in the first beginning of the second period might have been a different story for the outcome of the game.  But you never know, might not.

So I hate to live in the past.  I think we know exactly what we could do better in the power play and we know what we did very good in the power play, too.

So like everything else we’ll make sure tomorrow we put a better game on the ice, even though I felt we played a really good game.

Q.  How would you characterize the mood of your team?  For the most part you outplayed them, I get a sense you could get frustrated on a night when you feel you deserve a better fate, and now you’re down in the series.

COACH BOUCHER:  Yeah.  But look at Boston.  They were leading by three.  Everybody was telling them that they were feeling bad after the game and it would maybe carry on the next game and they won the next game.  That’s
why I say, people like to hear that things carry on to the next game.  But they don’t.

It’s a new story tomorrow.  So we feel that we lost the game and played well, and we can play even better.  And whether it’s just or unjust, the reality is it starts at zero tomorrow, and we have an opportunity and that’s great.

Q.  You faced elimination a couple times already in the postseason.  Do you draw on those games and just the feelings or whatnot heading into tomorrow?

COACH BOUCHER:  You can draw the fact that you don’t panic, that’s for sure.  But I don’t think you can draw on similarities between teams.  I mean, we’re playing a different team.  It’s a different story.  We’re not trailing by two, we’re trailing by one.  And do-or-die games or games where you need to make sure that you’ve got the energy, which you will, because it’s do-or-die, but I think a lot more important is that you need to be poised.

And I think yesterday the first period, we were really poised.  We played really good.  And we could have scored two or three goals.  And we didn’t.  But I think that second period, after the power plays, that we didn’t score, probably irritated a few of our players.  And we started to drift off in our five-on-five game, just for a little while, but it cost us.

And I think it’s the same approach going into those games, do-or-dies.  You know, if you feel it’s do or die the whole game you’re not going to execute.  You gotta focus on the process and the result, that’s at the end of the game.  See what happens.

But if you focus on the process and you are calm about it, that means you’re going to execute.  You give yourself a chance.  And that’s what we’re looking at.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dwayne+roloson, guy+boucher, sean+bergenheim


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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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