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Running Quotes for Bruins vs. Maple Leafs on 4/4

by Staff Writer / Boston Bruins
BOSTON BRUINS POSTGAME QUOTES

BOSTON BRUINS VS TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS
Saturday, April 4, 2015

BOSTON BRUINS HEAD COACH CLAUDE JULIEN POSTGAME PRESS CONFERENCE AT 10:00 P.M.
On the team’s effort tonight…
Well, you know, when you look at the score you say, ‘How could they?’ But, you know, we spent a lot of time in their end in the first period. Second period, we kind of got caught in that, maybe, back-and-forth kind of game instead of managing the puck a little bit better in the o-zone, but still had some scoring chances. But it’s one of those games, kind of like Buffalo, when you let a team hang around that long you’re inviting trouble. The lack of finish, I guess, tonight, where we had some great opportunities, but give their goaltender credit, he was outstanding tonight, gave them a chance to stay in it. From our end of it, you tell yourself you’ve got to find ways to score goals. It was tough. There’s no doubt the team was getting tight there at the end because of that. You’re always fearing the worst when a team is hanging around that long. Thankfully we were able to get a break there in the shootout and finally win one.

On Tuukka Rask having to come up big at times…
He did. Sometimes we say that a lot, it’s not the quantity, it’s the quality of shots. I know that two-pad stack save at that one point was probably one of the biggest saves there late in the third. He had to make the saves when he needed to. Again, in that shootout it’s the same thing, left on his own and some pretty good shooters went up against him.

On what he would like to see moving forward to improve his team’s lack of finish…
Well, you know, ironically I think a lot of times a lack of finish seems to be against teams that are at the bottom of the standings and we have a lot of great scoring chances. I don’t know if it’s because we’re trying to get a little too cute and why they’re waiting too long or whether it’s not enough good net-front positioning. When they’re big games, we find ways to score, so I don’t think I’m gonna look at that as that big of an issue. But both games that you’ve seen like that, it’s Buffalo and it’s Toronto, where we had a lot of shots, a lot of scoring opportunities and just couldn’t put pucks past their goaltender.

On if responding to the bigger games gives him hope moving towards the playoffs…
Those are no matter what team I think, no matter what team there is, those are always tough games to play. They come in here, they’ve got nothing to lose except a lot to gain by being spoilers. Then all of a sudden you’ve got a lot of opportunities, their goaltender is starting to feel it, he feels invincible, and then you’re trying to put pucks past him. There’s no doubt, in the third period, even in the second half of the third they’re just playing, saying ‘Let’s go win this game.’ While we’re saying ‘We can’t afford to lose this.’ Although you’re trying to win, there’s a lot more pressure on our team than there was on theirs.

On how reflective the seven or eights shots on net David Pastrnak had were of his play…
Well, again, he’s a guy that’s dangerous around the net. He hasn’t scored a ton of goals, but he’s there, he makes things happen and those are the exciting parts of his game. That’s the exciting part of that line.

On if he is working on a rotation with the fourth line…
More a rotation. Listen, I think Soupy’s [Gregory Campbell] one of our great faceoff guys and he’s a good penalty killer. At the same time, I feel we’ve got a lot of players that can go in and out right now. That’s one of the reasons, but at the same time I’m trying to create a little bit of competition here; I don’t want anybody comfortable, knowing that they’re automatics game in and game out.

On if keeping players sharp is also a part of it…
Yeah, that’s the same things as what I’m saying there, a little bit of sharpness there, make sure that everyone’s on their toes.

On what he’s thought of the team’s defensive game recently…
Well, it’s been better, obviously when you’re giving up just a few goals – and, yeah, you definitely need a good goaltender to be abler to do that. But I think, considering we’ve had to bring a guy up from Providence, some of those guys have had more ice time and we’ve had to mix and match our back end. Even our forwards have done a better job of protecting the house. Our defensive game is probably not perfect, but it’s better than it has been when we were losing games. I thought we were giving teams a lot of great opportunities from the slot area and we’ve really closed that down. What I’d like to see a little better is those shots from the point, I think our forwards need to do a better job of getting in those shooting lanes, they’re getting through us. Tonight, when you look at Toronto, we had a bunch of shots that were blocked, I think 11 just in that first period alone. We’ve got to get better in that area, gotta get a little bit more determination to get in those shooting lanes.

On there being more chemistry on the Patrice Bergeron line when he scored…
Yeah, I thought it was a good dump in, I thought they played what they call that triangle well. Bergy gets his first shot, but he stays on it and he manages to get that second one off. But, again, it’s a line that’s a possibility for us right now. Again, nothing’s carved in stone right now, so it gives you guys [the media] a lot of opportunities to make the lines for us and I can read those and decide which one makes the most sense [laughs].

BOSTON BRUINS FORWARD CHRIS KELLY
On developing chemistry with new linemates Max Talbot and Brett Connolly…
Yeah, we had some pretty good chances. I think all three of us, our feet were moving, and we weren’t in our end too often, so it was good. A bounce here, a bounce there, maybe we would’ve been able to get one.

On if the Bruins capitalized as much as they should have in the first…
Well not tonight. These games are difficult. The Buffalo one was kind of similar. I think we were up by one against Buffalo, but when you’re doing a lot of good things offensively and controlling the play in their zone, and you’re not getting the result, it’s easy to kind of get away from what’s bringing you that success. I think we kind of got away from it a little bit in the second period. They’re a good skating team, and they kind of like a wide-open style, kind of run-and-gun. We kind of got roped into that type of game, and I thought we did a better job in the third, but their goalie played well. He made some good saves, but ultimately you want to get, when you have 19 shots on net and pretty good scoring chances, you want to get at least a goal.

On having competition for playing spots on the fourth line…
Competition, that’s why we all play. Competition is good, and it makes everyone better, I think. We’ve got a great problem to have, good players that can play in the lineup, and I think every guy is trying to make it difficult on him to make those tough decisions. Ultimately you want to go out there and play your best hockey and help the team.

On trying to avoid a performance like this over the team’s final three games…
I think we’ve just got to focus on our team, focus on ourselves. We’ve kind of done that in the past. We don’t want to look at the other team and see what they’re playing for, what’s at stake for them. We know what’s at stake for us, and we need to focus on playing our best hockey.

On if it’s hard to believe Boston has won five straight but remain three points up on Ottawa…
That’s what makes hockey fun. It’s not last year, and I think rightfully so. Teams are battling hard, right to the end, and everyone’s competing hard. You look at the scores, and all the scores are one-goal games, maybe except the Rangers game, Tampa too. But teams are getting a point, there’s a lot of three-point games, and those points are huge at this point of the year.

BOSTON BRUINS FORWARD PATRICE BERGERON
On whether this felt like the recent game against Buffalo…
You know, I thought we had some really good chances, good looks, made some really good saves. We were definitely having a lot of zone-time. And you know when we have 50 shots, we definitely have to score more than one goal, but we found a way and got the win.

On whether there’s anything they can or should be doing differently to generate better quality shots…
Well I think the chances are there, we just need to bear down and put it in. I don’t think – I thought we had some really good looks.

On this being a great way to end a great week…
Yeah it’s a big win, you know a big effort coming back in a character win in Detroit, and coming back here at home –the last home game, you know we definitely wanted to win it. And it’s big points for us this time of year, and we got the extra point that we wanted. So you know there’s definitely some things that we can learn from and be better, but that being said we got the result.

On his line with David Krejci and Brad Marchand…
Yeah we’re creating a lot of chances. I think we have to really – we’re having some clean chances that we have to put it in. You know, we got one tonight, but there’s definitely more from us that we can create. I think our communication is definitely helping, and we’re improving, and we’re getting better at reading off each other on the transition and stuff like that to create some speed. It doesn’t matter which position we are, we just kind of swing and get some speed, and it’s been working.

On the possibility of the lines changing again in the future, and how much rhythm his line is generating…
Yeah I feel confident. We’re smart players and we definitely care to find a way to keep improving and you know we’re trying to do that right now. I thought, tonight, again we definitely generated a lot of chances and we didn’t get caught in our zone as well. You know, we have to build from that and keep plugging at it.

On whether he’s happy with how they have tightened up defensively…
Yeah for sure, it’s definitely something we’ve talked about. And to keep it, not just doing it for one game and getting away from it. I think we’re seeing results because of it. Maybe we’re not scoring as many goals as we should, but you know by keeping tight defensive zone coverage we’re limiting chances and it helps us to win games.

On whether he’s aware of the scoreboard during the game, or if he’s just focused on the ice…
Yeah I mean we’re focusing on being in the moment and winning your next shift, and like I said getting the result.

On how close the standings are and how crucial the points are…
Yeah everyone is playing desperate hockey, good hockey, and you know it definitely keeps us on our toes, and we have to do the job. And you know it’s in our heads. They’re not going to quit, and we knew that heading into the last stretch, but we’re seeing it right now, so we have to keep going.

On whether David Krejci being a natural center enhances his game at all…
Well it definitely helps. Even just on draws I can cheat more, and in my own zone we can just communicate and I can take the wing and he’s going to go down low, he knows how to play down there. So yeah we’re trying to kind of help out each other, and communicate and keep establishing some chemistry.

On whether it’s a relief to finally win a shootout…
Yeah I mean it’s points that are really important right now. And you want to do it in regulation, but when it comes down to that, you have to find a way.

On whether shootouts have become a silly problem for them this year…
Yeah I mean it’s definitely something we know we have to be better at, and down the stretch it’s big points. And again tonight, like I said, we’ve got to score some more goals with 50 shots, but that being said we got the result we wanted.

On facing other teams that might not have much to play for, and avoiding making mistakes…
I think you look at the standings and it’s pretty easy not to fall into that, and I think right now tonight it’s definitely one of those games that you know we have a lot of zone time but we have to generate – or score more goals – the chances are there, we are generating some shots and chances, but we just have to bear down and score.

BOSTON BRUINS GOALTENDER TUUKKA RASK
On if it’s tough to find a rhythm facing fewer shots than normal…
No, I tried to stay calm today, and just wait for the puck to come at me.

On how he would characterize the Bruins’ defensive effort over the last week…
We’re doing a better job taking care of those backdoor plays and second chances, third chances. But I mean, first period, we played great, offensively, defensively, and then in the second period, we kind of got into their game, just trading chances and the rush game, which never works to our benefit, but overall defensively, pretty good.

On James Reimer having a busy night facing 50 shots…
He was, yeah. We had some really good chances. In the first period, I’m looking at it, we gave him a lot of shots that he saw, and then when you see those and it hits your stomach, it makes you feel good. I know that feeling, and it’s a great feeling, and then you kind of get into a rhythm, and it’s tough to score after that. So I knew we were going to be in a dogfight after that first, but he made a ton of great saves, and he made it tough for us.

On his pad save on Joffrey Lupul while on his side…
Well there were two guys in front, I guess our D broke a stick, and then the guy gets two whacks at it, and I saw he was by himself there, so I just tried to take as much net away from him as possible, and I think he got two shots and then we cleared the puck, so, lucky there.

On if he’s comfortable with the way the Bruins have been winning lately…
Yeah, I mean, that’s how we win usually. We don’t let in too many goals. I mean, obviously Detroit is probably not the best example from a defensive standpoint, but overall, I think we’re tightening up. We’re taking away those second and third chances.

On having a consistent season and stealing games during an up-and-down year for the team…
I guess that’s what they expect the goalie to do, almost every year. But this year I think it’s just funny. I’ve had my struggles too, but we’ve kind of a Jekyll-and-Hyde team and kind of up-and-down. So it’s been tough for us, but we’ve been battling, and hopefully it pays off at the end.

On if it’s tough to look at the scoreboard and see Detroit and Ottawa winning tonight…
I don’t know. Obviously I see it sometimes, but I can’t score any goals or anything. So I just have to focus on keeping that puck away from our net, because it seemed like everybody was looking at the scoreboard, and then it makes us even tighter, you know? That’s what it looked like again today, so I tried to keep myself calm.

BOSTON BRUINS DEFENSEMAN TOREY KRUG
On tonight’s game…
If you don’t capitalize on your chances like we had then all of a sudden they get hope and they don’t play with any pressure. So it’s about taking away whatever hope that they have early and then skating away with the game. But you know that’s twice now, Buffalo at home and then here they pushed us to a shootout because we’re not able to capitalize and then take the next step forward within the game, but they’re tough games. They play without any pressure.

On Tuukka Rask….
Yeah, when Tuukks [Tuukka Rask] is our best player then you know we have a good chance at winning a hockey game. He’s seeing the puck right now and it’s good. Guys are also committed to defense as well. It’s a combination of those two things and we’re not going to give up many goals and that’s what it takes to win hockey games right now. That’s how the Boston Bruins win hockey games, by not giving up more than a couple of goals.

On things they could have done differently tonight…
There’s always things. You look back at opportunities and making sure that you bear down on them. I know personally myself I had a couple that you can always take an extra second, make a better shot. That goes around with the whole team, everybody looks back at a game and they have things they think about but this time of year you’re going to score goals by going to the net. And when we score goals, that’s the way it happens. So we’ve just got to be able to score those dirty goals.

On how much pressure builds when the game is tied…
If you let that get to you then we’re going to sit back on our heels and they’re going to take it to us because they don’t have any pressure, so it’s about controlling that. I thought there were times where we did a good job that and there were times when we kind of sat back and they had a couple of opportunities and good looks at the net. It can definitely be tough, these are games that are tough to win. They don’t play with any pressure on their shoulders and they’re skating around and doing their thing, so you’ve got to be sure you stay on top of things.

On what to focus on with upcoming games…
Well you focus on yourself. If you go into a game worrying about what’s going to happen then you’re going to, like I said, sit back on your heels and we’re not going to play our style, which is a defensive game where we have our layers and then we get offensive opportunities because of our layers. So if we focus on ourselves we’ll beat those teams and we’ve just got to be sure we’re going to continue to stay on top of that.

BOSTON BRUINS FORWARD BRETT CONNOLLY
On getting to play with a lot of different guys tonight…
Oh, I know. It’s good, obviously coach is trying to feel some things out. It was good, I thought that me, Max [Talbot], and Kells [Chris Kelly] had a pretty good start to the third, kind of got better as the game went on too. It was good. I thought that for me, I’m just trying to feel out, I’ve played with pretty much everybody on the team so far, just trying to feel it out. We had lots of chances tonight, 50 shots on net. It’s just one of those things where if we get 50 shots a game they’ll start going in for us.

On if it’s good getting to play with everyone or better to settle with one line…
I think, obviously it would be easier to settle into one line, but for me it’s not really an ideal situation coming back from a month. Everybody’s playing well, obviously, there’s a lot of guys that are deserving of ice time. That’s a good thing, we’ve got a lot of guys who are competing for ice and it’s gonna make us better going forward. It was good to get out there, I played a little bit more tonight, felt a little better. Just gotta find my legs a little bit here and we’ll see where I fit here the next few games.

On what his emotions were like playing his first home game…
It was great. You come here, you play here as a visitor, but when you play here with the Bruins jersey on it’s something else. Obviously very exciting for myself, I had lot of fun with it tonight. It was good to get the win, we obviously played a pretty solid game, we had so many chances, it’s one of those things where it’s not going in. But we played a pretty good game for the most part.

On if there was frustration not being able to capitalize…
It’s one of those things where we kind of threw everything at them in the first and then they kind of hung around. They’ve got a good team, they’ve got a lot of good players over there and they can make plays. Obviously Tuukka [Rask] was great for us again tonight, he’s been so good lately. He’s a big reason why we came out with two points tonight.

On what it means to him to finally be playing here after his injury…
It was great. Obviously I was really looking forward to a fresh start with a new team and obviously disappointing coming in and getting hurt. Again, very excited to finally be out there and get a couple wins here in my first two games and to be able to contribute a little bit and help the team win. Again, the team’s playing well so far lately. It’s been a lot of fun to step in and be a part of it.

On his line forming more chemistry each shift…
Yeah, I played with a bunch of guys tonight. Coach is just trying to find a couple things that are gonna fit. Again, we’ll see what that is here down the road. But again, we’re just worried about getting wins. Ottawa’s winning every game, so it’s not gonna be easy for us and we know that. We’ve got three games left here, we’re gonna control our destiny here a little bit, gotta come out with points every single night. We’re playing well and it’s fun to be a part of.

On if he truly feels a part of the team after playing in such high stakes games…
For sure, you always hear about the leadership that they have here and then you come into an environment like this and you’ve got the Bergerons [Patrice Bergeron], the Charas [Zdeno Chara], [Milan] Lucic, Seids [Dennis Seidenberg], Marshy [Brad Marchand]. Those are guys that have won and guys that come to the rink every day and have a lot of fun, and work hard every day. For young guys just to be a part of that and to watch these guys work it’s obviously good for me and for the other young guys: Pasta [David Pastrnak], Spoons [Ryan Spooner], and those guys. So it’s been great to be a part of and I’m looking to build on these two games.

On if he glanced at the scoreboards during the game..
It’s tough when it’s right up on the top of the building, you see Ottawa is winning. But again it’s one of those things where we’ve got to just worry about ourselves and I thought we’ve done a pretty good job of that, we’ve been sticking with each other and playing for our teammates here so it’s been a good little stretch here we’ve got to keep it going. It’s obviously a big three games, it’s going to determine where we fit here going to the post season and I think guys are embracing it, we’re excited about it. It’ll be good for us going forward playing these meaningful games and it’ll be good for us going forward again.

On if he felt he had something to prove with his first game in front of the home fans…
Yeah, a little bit I guess. Just trying to obviously work as hard as I could. I missed a month, I felt I had a good game in Detroit and tonight I had some chances again, tried to play physical. Little things, won a couple draws. Just little things that helped the team win. The team played well, Tuukka [Tuukka Rask] played well. We’re finding ways to win right now and that’s what good teams do.

On if the month off gave him a chance to get used to the system..
Yeah, for sure. I think just to recharge and kind of watch them from the top it obviously helps. For me I watch every single game and paid very close attention to the little details that the guys do and then when I got into practice it’s little things, just how hard the guys work. It’s impressive how hard the guys work every day and like I said before, for the young guys it’s great coming to the rink it pushes guys. You don’t get any freebees from these guys, they’ll be on you. Let’s be honest if you’re not working hard you’re going to hear it form Zee [Zdeno Chara] and the guys up top and our leadership group, so that’s a good thing for our team and it pushes the guys to be good every single day.

On the team’s power play…
Yeah, the Power Play is one of those things where you’ve kind of got to feel it out, obviously these guys are new for me and I’m new for them but it’s one of those things when you get a little confidence playing with the guys and the guys start feeling it gets them on the power play and you know we’ve got a guy like [David] Pastrnak who he’s been playing so well, and it’s, he had another good game tonight. It’s just little things like that, guys are pushing guys to be good and if you’re not good guys are going to take your spot and that’s a good thing for our team.

TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS HEAD COACH PETER HORACHEK
On the effort by his team tonight...
We talked about before, about playing a good game and giving Boston the respect they deserve and to play a game that was important to them.  They had a lot of shots but the game is right there and we had opportunities as well so the guys put an effort out.

On the play of James Reimer tonight...
Yeah it was great.  A lot of shots, a lot of traffic, a lot of big bodies in front of him and he was able to find rebounds and control and he seemed to be under control and he seemed steady.

On the blocked shots by his team tonight…
A lot of blocked shots and you know you have to be able to sacrifice by blocking shots or taking a hit and Smitty [Trevor Smith] took a hit early in the game and that put us down a centerman right off the bat and the lines are juggling right from the beginning of the game, 23 seconds into the game. So you have to juggle right away but guys were blocking shots.  They were purposefully and obviously trying to put pucks to the net and shoot with traffic and shoot with traffic to try to create some havoc or a rebound situation. So I think our guys did a pretty good job of blocking shots as well as some big ones too.

On if there is an update on Trevor Smith…
I don’t really have an update at this point no.  I really don’t know.  I knew that he was sent to see the doctor and I think he’s back.

On how important a game like this is for his young defenseman…
Well you got to put yourselves in playoff type atmospheres, pressure atmospheres against good teams and compete against good teams in games that matter and I think the young defenseman have to feel it.  You saw [Andrew] MacWilliams, he was blocking shots and the physical part of the game is something that he’s no stranger to and there are other parts that he is going to continue to get better at.

On if it is tough this time of year when there is not much to play for...
Well I don’t think so.  I think that you play the game, you play the game and that’s what we are trying to get around, trying to get everybody thinking that way.  You play the game the right way and whether it’s in the first minute, last minute, first game or last game of the season you still have to block shots, you still have to take a hit to make a play and give a hit to make a play and you got to stop and you have to skate and track back.  That’s part of the game and that’s what we have to be.  We have to decide what we are and that’s what we are pushing for.

On if there have been too many nights where he hasn’t gotten this kind of effort...
Well there has been a number of games where we want that effort, we want that attitude, we want that push, we want that kind of consistency and consistency in the game is important too.  Guys kind of feel like, oh well maybe I don’t feel my best tonight.  Well you got to find a way to be effective.  But tonight I think the guys certainly tried to put an effort out versus a pretty good team.

TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS FORWARD ZACH SILL
On the forecheck by the Leafs tonight...
Yeah we knew it was going to be a hard fought match and we knew we had to hang up with their intensity and it was a fun hockey game.

On the shot blocking by the team tonight...
Yeah these guys, you know they wanted to get the puck to the net and we knew we had to help [James] Reimer out as much as we could.  He saw a lot of shots out there but that’s part of hockey to get in front of the puck.

On the play of James Reimer tonight...
It was unbelievable.  I’m sorry we couldn’t get him the win, that’s for sure.  He deserved the win.

On the effort of the team tonight and where they could have been playing like this all season…
It was good.  We know we don’t have much time left together as a group.  We are just trying to play out our last couple of games the best we can.

On the game against Ottawa tomorrow night and the chance to play spoilers...
Absolutely and it’s going to be another one like tonight.  They are fighting for their lives and we are going to have to ante up to their intensity and it’s going to be a fun game tomorrow.

On if he felt that the Bruins were desperate right from the start...
Absolutely.  They are playing for their lives and when you have your backs against the wall you always come out with a good effort.

On if there is any satisfaction in making the Bruins work hard for the win...
Yeah I think so.  We wanted the win out there but we knew we were going to see a good game and hockey players are competitive people, and it’s fun to play in these competitive games.

TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS FORWARD DAVID BOOTH
On if he felt like a foots soldier on the ice…
Yeah, even though we lost, I feel like the guys in the room, felt like a good atmosphere for a game.  Felt into the game.  I know they got a lot of shots.  James Reimer played very well tonight, and it was good to see.  You know, he played well the past couple of games.  He’s given us a chance to win, but that was a fun game for us. you know, and if we can just keep that momentum going for tomorrow, that’ll be fun.

On goaltender James Reimer’s great performance…
I think that gives you a little bit more confidence up front.  It just boosts the morale on the bench.  You know, when guys are yelling, “good save,” that energy, that positivity is good for the guys and it was good to see. I thought we fed off of him tonight.

On what stood out during the Maple Leafs’ penalty killing…
I think a lot of blocked shots.  [Andrew] MacWilliam blocked a lot—a couple [Zdeno] Chara shots.  I saw that—and  [Richard] Panik and Siller [Zach Sill].  A lot of blocked shots there.  I’m sure I missed a bunch of guys, but that was good.  You know they have a good power play.  James [Reimer], too, stood on his head.

On Eric Brewer also blocking a lot of shots…
Yeah, I forgot about him.  I knew I’d forget about someone, but you guys would pick it up.  So, thanks for reminding me about Brewer.

TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS GOALTENDER JAMES REIMER
On facing 19 shots in the first period...
Yeah it definitely gets you in it.  They obviously needed the two points and they came out hard.  We were expecting them to come out hard and we just wanted to weather the storm and I thought we did a pretty good job of it.  I mean they are a good team and they are fighting for playoffs and I thought we did a great job.  We blocked a lot of shots, even though they had 19, I thought we were sacrificing the body and playing really well.  I was impressed with the way we handled it.

On if his last two starts felt the same with the zone that he was in...
Yeah I mean I’m just trying to relax and let the play come to me.  I think a big part of the little bit of success we have had over the last little bit is just because the team, I thought we played again really well tonight and Boston is a really good team by getting traffic out front and getting bodies to the paint but I thought our defensemen were battling hard and I got a look at darn near every shot and if I didn’t see it they were blocking it so as a goalie that’s all you can ask for from your team and your defensemen and they stepped up.

On the team continuing to build towards next season...
Yeah definitely.  I mean a game at a time just like any point in the season but obviously you want to end off on a strong note so hopefully we can keep the ball rolling and keep getting points towards the end of the year.

TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS FORWARD ZACH SILL
On the forecheck by the Leafs tonight...
Yeah we knew it was going to be a hard fought match and we knew we had to hang up with their intensity and it was a fun hockey game.

On the shot blocking by the team tonight...
Yeah these guys, you know they wanted to get the puck to the net and we knew we had to help [James] Reimer out as much as we could.  He saw a lot of shots out there but that’s part of hockey to get in front of the puck.

On the play of James Reimer tonight...
It was unbelievable.  I’m sorry we couldn’t get him the win, that’s for sure.  He deserved the win.

On the effort of the team tonight and where they could have been playing like this all season…
It was good.  We know we don’t have much time left together as a group.  We are just trying to play out our last couple of games the best we can.

On the game against Ottawa tomorrow night and the chance to play spoilers...
Absolutely and it’s going to be another one like tonight.  They are fighting for their lives and we are going to have to ante up to their intensity and it’s going to be a fun game tomorrow.

On if he felt that the Bruins were desperate right from the start...
Absolutely.  They are playing for their lives and when you have your backs against the wall you always come out with a good effort.

On if there is any satisfaction in making the Bruins work hard for the win...
Yeah I think so.  We wanted the win out there but we knew we were going to see a good game and hockey players are competitive people, and it’s fun to play in these competitive games.

TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS FORWARD JAMES VAN RIEMSDYK
On how Boston-Toronto games are always intense…
Yeah, ever since I’ve been here, Boston’s always a game you really get up for. You know it’s going to be a big challenge with a lot of the guys they have over there, so it’s always a fun game to play in.

On goaltender James Reimer’s performance…
He was awesome.  He kept us in the game all night, made a lot of huge saves, and it’s unfortunate we couldn’t get the two points for him.  He’s played well more often than not this year.  I mean, we haven’t necessarily done the best job in front of both our goalies, but both those guys have done a great job battling, and at least giving us a chance on most nights.

On what he saw on his goal…
I just was going to the net.  I didn’t even really see him [Morgan Rielly] shoot it, and the rebound bounced off it, and it went in, so I got a good bounce.

On the everyone on the team putting forth effort and contributing…
It was, I think, as far as a team effort, it was a lot of good things.  As far as playing physical, playing within the team structure—you see a lot of guys blocking shots out there and making the smart plays.  I think it was a good challenge for us.  I thought we rose to that challenge and obviously came up a little bit short.
BOSTON BRUINS HEAD COACH CLAUDE JULIEN PREGAME PRESS CONFERENCE AT 11:00 AM
On the team changing their approach to bigger games at the end of the season…
Not really. I think our guys know that we can’t change our approach to any games. They all mean a lot. They’re all must wins in our minds and we got to keep approaching it that way.

On the team giving up few goals recently and your analysis of the defensive system…
Yeah it is and that’s what we discussed here when we went through that little stretch of losing games. We were giving up too many goals. We’ve always been a team that, when we protect our end well, usually good things follow. We’re a team right now, we don’t have any 50-goal scorers. So it’s not about, necessarily, just playing defense, it’s about understanding what we have. We’ve got a lot of guys that can score but not at the rate of 50 goals so we have to make sure we keep our goals against down. Normally when we do that, we win hockey games.

On changing the lineups so much this season prepare you for line shuffling in the playoffs…
Maybe a little bit with injuries and guys moving around. There’s no doubt that gives you a better feel of who plays better with who and that kind of stuff. Doesn’t mean that you don’t have to still juggle lines as I did last game, but no doubt. We’re a team this year that’s had more fluctuation in our line combinations than ever.

On line fluctuation going into the playoffs…
I think it’s a good thing. It’s not a bad thing at all. You’re going to go with the best combinations that you have at that time and if it doesn’t work you’ll find some other ones. But, you know, at least you can move guys around and guys have had success with different players so I don’t think it’s a bad situation. I’m comfortable with that.

On Reilly Smith playing with Carl Soderberg and Loui Eriksson …
I think those three have played well together. I know Smitty [Reilly Smith] at times has been on the right side, other times he’s been on the left side. But those three to me—and that’s why I put them back together last game. You can see with Krech [David Krejci] in the middle, it didn’t seem to be much chemistry as far as reading off each other. So it was important for me to get Smitty back with those guys. David doesn’t mind playing the wing with Bergy [Patrice Bergeron] and Marchy [Brad Marchand]. He’s very comfortable there. He says he’s feeling better at that position and we know he’s a good centerman as well. You deal with the situation the way it needs to be dealt at the time. He’s been there and to me he’s producing, no producing, he’s making plays, his hands are still there. Him and Bergy seem to read off each other well as far as interchanging. That’s been kind of a little blessing in disguise that that’s been the case.

On Soderberg having more responsibility at center with Smith there as opposed to Kelly…
I think our guys, even Loui [Eriksson], our first guy in has to be the low guy. It’s been like that all year. I don’t think It really matters except, I think, in everybody’s mind you feel more comfortable when it’s one centerman and another centerman down low so guys that have been used to playing that position but we’ve had other lines in the past like Bergy’s [Patrice Bergeron] line where you have [Brad] Marchand and [Reilly] Smith on that line and somebody has to play low at times. We’re comfortable. That’s part of our system of how we defend.

On Krejci playing the wing because of line shuffling or him not being ready for center yet…
I would say Joe [Haggerty] it’s about finding the best combinations right now to win hockey games. I’m not worried about the future, I’m worried about the present. The present is what’s important right now and we got to continue to win hockey games here and get ourselves into a playoff spot. I don’t think we should be sitting here taking anything for granted and start planning for the future because to me it would be a big mistake.

On being a challenge to find those combinations…
Well as I said, my mind is not on the post season, it’s really on now. You got to win hockey games and take care of business and those sort of things sort themselves out. We’re capable of making those adjustments. I don’t think anything we do now is going to hurt us in the future, I think if anything it’s going to help us. I have no issues with those kind of things and you got to focus. To me, we got to focus on tonight and that’s what I’m worried about, how do we have the best players together for tonight’s game and win hockey games? It’s not about, should I put this guy because I want to see how they’ll do in the playoffs. We’re not there yet. And again I’m asking players not to look any further than tonight’s game. I got to do the same thing.

On David Pastrnak playing with Chris Kelly and Greg Campbell…
Well, you know, those are all assumptions guys. If, if, if, if [David] Krejci goes back to center, I think what you say this morning is just a mix and match. They were with different lines.

On starting the season with injuries and now having a full lineup of forwards…
It makes it harder, but it makes it better because now I have decisions to make and when you have decisions to make and you have tough ones it creates accountability amongst players. If you want to be in the lineup or whatever the case is, there’s a lot more accountability and that’s one of the things, a few things that the coaches have left to manage their team is having those extra players and good players. Having good players have to sit out for different reasons and sometimes it’s just rotation, sometimes it’s poor play, but no matter what, to me I’d rather be in this position right now than be in the position I was a month ago. This is what I have.
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