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Jonathan Toews Patrick Sharp Pre-Game 3 Press Conference

by Staff Writer / Chicago Blackhawks
Q.  Jonathan, as a line, how much better were your chances do you think last game maybe than in Game 1?

  Quite a bit better.  I mean, the biggest thing for us is that we were much, much better defensively, and we worked harder on our own side of the puck.  That's where we wanted to start from the ground up.  And we know the offense is going to come.

Obviously, in the last couple of games it worked out for our team where we didn't need to score for to us win.  But we know we want to come up big on one of these nights here.

Q.  For both Patrick and Jonathan, what you guys first thought when Marian Hossa was brought over to your team and what you think of the unique circumstances that is he's sort of been under in the last couple of Cup Finals going from team to team, but not quite being able to win.

PATRICK SHARP:  I think it's been a great addition to the team.  If you ask all 30 teams in the league if they want Hoss there, I think everyone would take him gladly.  We're lucky to have him on our team.  He brings so much to the club besides his goal scoring.  Everyone knows him because he scores 40 goals a year.

But I think he's one of the best two way wingers in the league, and I can tell that you because I play with him, so I know firsthand.  He's a great locker room guy.  The fact he's been to three Cup Finals I think is a great thing.  He's been a big part of all three of those teams, and we want to make sure we keep winning for him.

Q.  Jonathan, is it easy to not get frustrated just because you guys have won these last two games?

JONATHAN TOEWS:  Yeah, I mean, at the same time you look at the bigger picture.  You look at how we've done in previous series.  It's always about who you are matched up against and who you're competing against every other shift.

And you don't want to let them get the best of you.  You want to win the small battles.  I think as a team we've won most of those little battles which end up helping us win those games.

But as a line we're going to keep getting better.  We know we're going to break through and get our chances.  The easy thing is to get frustrated.  We're not going to do that either.

Q.  Just wondering, do you guys allow yourselves to think two wins from the Cup, or we're two wins from the Cup?

  I think we're pretty focused on Game 3.  Everyone knows what's on the line in this series.  We're definitely not getting too far ahead of ourselves.  We know the challenges to play in this building and how good they're fans are going to be to help them on their side.  It's going to be tough for us here.  We're not looking past tonight's game.  That's for sure.

Q.  Patrick, as a guy who has played here, is there anything particularly distinctive about the crowds here, and when you played here, was it helpful to you and as a guy who comes in here as a visitor, is it particularly ruder or louder or more abusive or whatever than any other place that you go to play?

  We haven't been here too many times since they went    since I went to Chicago.  I'm not sure how they're going to treat us.  In the Playoff atmosphere I know I was on the Flyers side before.  It's a great atmosphere.  Every building has great fans when the puck goes in the net or something happens out on the ice.  These Philly fans, they watch every play.  They can get on top of the opposing teams players as well.

I think it's going to be a fun atmosphere.  We're all looking forward to it, and we want to play our best.

Q.  Jonathan, for both of you, you were home for a long time here in Chicago for quite a while.  Does it feel good to be away a little bit?

JONATHAN TOEWS:  Absolutely.  Before we came home for Games 3 and 4 against San Jose, we were on the road for what felt like a long time at that point too.  Things were going pretty good for us at that point.  I think we can bring that confidence back we had on the road in the previous series and really try and get after it tonight and use that.

When you're on the road, you spend more time as a team.  We're together.  For us that's where we want to be.  That's where we're in our comfort zone.

Q.  Pat said maybe it was a case of trying too hard in front of the home crowd for your line.  Do you buy into that?  When you see his game, do you see that in him as well?

JONATHAN TOEWS:  Yeah, sometimes in those types of games you're trying to create something when there's no plays there.  That's the last thing you want to be doing.  We're just going to keep things simple the way we did last game.

We had a couple of scoring chances where if you score a goal or two, well then everything is simple and you don't ask as many questions after a game like that.  We'll keep working hard and we're going to get that success and contribute to our team the way we want to, the way we have been.  And things will be better after that.

Q.  For both of you guys.  You guys are a win away from setting a record for consecutive road wins in the Playoffs.  What is it about  that's allowed to you have that kind of success on the road?

PATRICK SHARP I think we get along so well off the ice as a team.  We enjoy each other's company.  We like being out on the road together.  It's nice to have a road winning streak, but it doesn't mean much at end of the day.  We have to hopefully win two more on the road.

JONATHAN TOEWS:  Yeah, I mean, obviously I knew people, knew him better than I did going into the Olympics.  Obviously, playing on his line, you get to know him on and off the ice pretty well.  A lot of just being around him, kind of confirmed what I already knew about him as a person and as a player.  Obviously he's a character guy, the type of guy you want on your team.

It was a lot of fun to play with some of the best players in the league.  Especially a guy like Mike Richards.  There's nothing like going up against a guy like that too.  Because it really tests what you got and what you can bring to the table.
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