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Running Quotes for Bruins vs. Predators on 12/23

by Staff Writer / Boston Bruins
BOSTON BRUINS PREGAME QUOTES

BOSTON BRUINS VS NASHVILLE PREDATORS
Tuesday, December 23, 2014

BOSTON BRUINS HEAD COACH CLAUDE JULIEN POSTGAME PRESS CONFERENCE AT 9:50 P.M.
On what he thought of his team’s effort tonight…
It was good. That third period stretch where we played on our heels, we can look at that, or we can look at the probably 50 minutes that I thought we played pretty well, seeing them play with a good purpose and some strong plays, our feet were moving, making good passes. I didn’t mind our game tonight.

On if tonight was the way Matt Bartkowski has to play to be effective…
Yeah, I think you see his strengths come out, but then where we’ve tried to work with him in the past and want him to improve. Tonight, he showed that he was much better in that area. The focus sometimes and the mindset deciding that ‘I’m gonna do it,’ and I think when he puts his mind to it he’s very capable of it.

On what Loui Eriksson is doing right now that is making him successful…
I don’t know. Right now, a lot of it has to do with confidence. I think he’s skating better. When you’re confident, a lot of things come easy to you; when you’re not, you’re skating out there sometimes you feel like you’ve got a piano on your back and your sluggish and everything else. But right now I think he’s feeling it. Like all players in this league when they get on a roll, they feel good about themselves and I think, to me, he’s showing the kind of player we’ve always thought he was. He’s scoring some goals, he’s making some plays, he’s killing penalties. He’s a guy that you can use in all kinds of situations, so right now I think we’re seeing some of his best hockey.

On what he thought of Brad Marchand’s play tonight…
Good. Again, we always talk about Brad when he shoots pucks, he’s aggressive on the puck and strong on it, he’s a good player. Tonight was another one of those nights where he seemed to feel it. His first goal, I don’t think too many goaltenders would have stopped that, it was a quick release, quick, hard shot. He scored an important goal for us, it’s important to get that early lead.

On if scoring power play goals in two straight games is something the team can build on…
Well, yeah, it’s the same thing. We’re not fortunate enough to get a ton of power plays, but it’s important that we produce on them. The one thing I would have liked to have seen is that four-minute power play, if we could’ve scored a goal at that point I think we could have had a different ending to the game. It’s important when you get a chance to bury a team, you try and make the most of it. We did hit the post, there was a tip, it the post; if it goes in, we’ve got what we’re looking for. The puck movement, the control of it, has been pretty good, so it’s nice to see us at least get some production out of it.

On if he could tell the difference tonight offensively with his top two centers playing well…
Yeah, when we have parts in place, I guess, and give Cunny [Craig Cunningham] a lot of credit, he brought a good work ethic to the [David] Krejci line there tonight and was able to make some plays as well. He certainly gave us a good balance there with that line. But the other two obviously were good as well, Carl [Soderberg] and Bergy’s [Patrice Bergeron] line who scored some big goals for us.

BOSTON BRUINS FORWARD BRAD MARCHAND
On how important it is to continue to get pucks on the net…
Yeah, I think we all know that if we’re going to climb back in the standings we need to all play our game and we’ve got to do what we’re here… what we’re getting paid to do, and we’ve got to produce, and guys who kill penalties have got to kill penalties and power play’s got to score and D have got to make good passes. We all know what we have to do, and if we all play our roles the way we’re supposed to then we’re a good team. We know that, and we have been in the past, so it’s good to see that everybody is stepping up right now and we did come into the break on a good note and hopefully we can continue that going into the new year.

On getting more goals…
Yeah, in the past we’ve had a few guys who have always produced early on, but I think it’s coming around now. You know, you see how many goals Loui [Eriksson] has the last few games and Smitty [Reilly Smith] has been scoring a lot lately too, so that’s what we need and better late than never and hopefully we can continue that.

On this being the first time they have won back-to-back games in a while and whether the players are aware of that…
I mean we’re aware of it. You know, we watch the standings and we’re aware of the teams who are climbing ahead of us and we know that we have to be better. It just seemed like every time we made a mistake it would end up in our net and we couldn’t score, but the last couple of games we showed some character and we’ve got to be happy with two wins and it was definitely nice to get the four points going into the break, so we know that we’ve got a big job ahead of us, but we’re confident that we can be much better.

On what he is noticing in the power play the last couple of games that hasn’t been there for the most part this season…
Well I think the puck movement has been good and guys have been winning races to loose pucks, and that’s huge. When you’re able to keep the play alive in the offensive zone then you get a lot more opportunities I think. On the second power play unit we’ve had so many guys in our lineup on that one. We’re able to build a little chemistry right now and figure out some plays that we can make, so I thought we had a better… a few better opportunities tonight, you know, scored a goal and that’s what we need. We’ve got to be able to step up at the right times.

On this game not seeming to be as much of a struggle as Sunday and not having much practice playing with a lead and whether there are still things that need to be addressed…
Yeah, definitely still – I don’t think we’re happy with how we played in the third. We just, it seemed like after they scored that third goal we just hit the panic button and we were making plays. We were making the right decisions, but we just couldn’t get it out of our zone, so we definitely have to clean that area up, and it’s important that you’re able to play with the lead and you’re able to get teams out of the game. We probably should have buried a goal on that power play, but we did get the win eventually and Tuukks [Tuukka Rask] stepped up there late in the game and really stood on his head, so we’ve still got to get the points.

On the power play and having “killer instinct”…
Yeah, definitely. I mean, you’ve got a team on the ropes and a four-minute power play. We did have some opportunities, but you at least have to throw something at them if you don’t score a goal, but like I said before, we have to step up and be able to score a goal on a power play like that.

On what kind of game this was for Patrice Bergeron that he was able to give their line that much offensive presence…
Yeah, he was great. I mean he’s one of the top players in the league and when he’s on his game he’s always making great plays and he did that again tonight. When he’s on it allows the rest of our team to go, so hopefully he can continue to play the way he has the last 12 years.

On what the key is for him to be “on”…
I think the base thing is just to keep my feet moving and try to make simple plays. I think when I stop moving my feet then guys are able to get close to me with longer reaches and poke pucks away and sometimes when things aren’t going good I start forcing plays, so I’ve just got to keep it simple and things will open up.

On how much responsibility he takes to start scoring when the team is not producing…
I mean anytime the team’s not doing well and we’re not scoring goals I think we all… everyone who’s here to produce… everyone on the team actually, everyone wants to step up and be the factor but that definitely adds a lot of pressure and we feel it. We want to hop out there but sometimes when things aren’t going well you do start to force plays and make the wrong decisions and instead of making the easy passes off to the D you’re forcing them to the middle and you just end up back checking all night so the biggest thing is when you’re not scoring you’ve just got to make sure you’re keeping it simple and playing within the system.

On not having the same deflation when the other team scored as they did on Sunday and whether they are trying to not let that get to them…
Yeah for the most part that didn’t really happen tonight. Early on in the game when they scored we seemed to be calm on the bench and able to battle back. When they got that third one we kind of hit the panic button but we were able to hold off there, but we definitely… I think we did a better job tonight with that and it’s something we definitely have to improve upon.

On how much of a game changer it is when David Krejci and Patrice Bergeron are playing the way they are…
Yeah, when they’re on they just… they drive the offense, and they’re able to make plays all 200 feet of the rink and they get pucks out of our end which allows us to get on the offense and just creating things everywhere, so it’s a lot of fun to watch them when they’re on, and like I said before, when they’re going then everybody’s going.

On whether that is a reminder of the way things are supposed to be…
Yeah it was good tonight. I think it was good to see glimpses of how we know we can play and we know it’s still in here. I thought we had a really good first couple periods. We didn’t have the best third but we were able to still come out with the win and that’s what we need.

BOSTON BRUINS DEFENSEMAN MATT BARTKOWSKI
On being more involved in plays tonight...
The ice was just there more than usual, so I just took it as much as I could. That’s all it was.

On his assist to Loui Eriksson’s goal in the second period...
I don’t know, I was just getting up on the play and just made a play – that’s it. It was nothing much. Nothing spectacular, just the ice was there so I took it.

On using his best assets in tonight’s game and skating with the puck...
Yeah, there was just more room tonight than normal. If it’s there any game, you should take it. Tonight there was just a little more than normal, so it worked out pretty well.

On getting into a rhythm...
Yeah, but the situation kind of dictates. I mean, if we’re all over them like at points of the game we were – maybe most of the game – it makes it a lot easier because they’re getting tired and we can just start skating. You know, they’re dumping pucks in and having to change. So, it just makes it easier.

On the team getting back to back wins before the holiday break...
Yeah, it’s big. Over the break, I mean, we need to mentally shut down and take some time off, but when we come back we’ve got to remember how we played for pretty much most of this game – except for maybe five minutes – and take that into Columbus and keep our streak going, get something going here.

On the team working its way up to a full sixty-minute game...
I mean you’re not going to have sixty minutes of great hockey; it just can’t be so night and day. It can’t be really good and then really bad. There’s got to be some middle ground there. When you’re off for a few minutes, you can’t just totally lay an egg, you know what I mean, like B game not C game.

On if a game like this increases his confidence offensively...
Yeah, I mean I don’t need any more confidence at this point; it’s all there. But with the ice available there then I’m able to use my best asset, which is skating. So it’s fun.

On setting up Loui Eriksson to score...
Well I picked it up off my skate, so once I got it to my stick that D had turned over and turned his stick over, kind of in the shooting lane but I knew I could go under it. Kellz [Chris Kelly] had a really good net drive, which I mean if he doesn’t do that, nothing’s there. That was just the play I decided to make and it worked out.

On Nashville controlling the game in the third period when the team was fatigued...
I don’t know, I don’t think I was out there. I’m just kidding – it’s not fun, but you just have to remember don’t let your brain shut down because naturally you’re not going think as well as you can. Really you just have to focus on making a hard play to get the puck out and just not shutting down mentally.

On if this is a good way to head into the holiday break...
Yeah, absolutely. Any win is good but I think this was needed. Mentally, for ourselves, and then for after the break to start something, get something going.

BRUINS GOALTENDER TUUKKA RASK
On the importance of back-to-back wins…
Yeah, as you know we have to put up a streak in order to catch up to other teams. I thought we played a pretty good game today as a team. There’s a few minutes span there in the third where we kind of panicked a little bit or whatever, but overall a really good game.

On the almost two-minute attack from the Predators in the third period…
Well you know I just try to see where the guys are and I thought we protected the middle of the ice pretty well and didn’t give them more than one or two shots maybe, if that. It’s tough, but I’m just trying to be ready for a mistake because guys are getting tired and I try to back them up.

On if he saw the second goal...
No, I saw it. It was just a weak goal. Weak, weak goal, but luckily it didn’t cost us today. I always want to play a perfect game and today definitely wasn’t a perfect game, but there’s been times where I’ve played really good and we’ve lost 2-1, 3-2, and stuff like that. Today, I wasn’t at my best, but guys bailed me out and played a heck of a game.

On if the team bailed him out after that second goal…
Yeah for sure. The first period was good and there was no reason to be tied after that and I took a lot of blame for that, but we battled back and got rewarded. As I said, I thought it was a really good game from the team.

On if the team needs the upcoming break…
I think it’s good for us. It’s been kind of a long stretch and a couple tough road trips there. As long as we rest properly and do the right things and take advantage of it, it will pay off. The schedule’s not going to get any easier for us so we got to use it the right way.

On the impact of several players returning from injury…
You see how big of a help it is. A lot of times they’re such good players in the d-zone too and they’re calm and good with the puck that when they get it, they make a play and don’t cough it up. It helps our breakouts and then once we get to the offensive zone and the neutral zone, and [David] Krejci especially. He’s really good at making those smart plays and good plays and getting us good ones. It’s a huge help for us. But, as far as team goes, I think today a lot of good examples of how our offense works.  When you don’t overpass and take the lane and shot when it’s there and make a pass when it’s there.

On Brad Marchand’s play in the offensive zone…
Yeah, you know, when he doesn’t over do it. He plays straight lines and thinks attack when it’s time to attack and thinks defense when it’s time to play defense. He’s a really effective player. Showed it today. A lot of the times when he gets so confident that he starts making little plays and moves and stuff like that, they end up costing us. Hopefully he keeps it going.

On if Brad Marchand should keep it simple…
Yeah, I mean it’s tough sometimes when you’re feeling good. You don’t want to make the easy plays all the time because you’re feeling good, but it pays off.

On several good wins against solid teams…
We’ve played good games against good teams and given us a chance to win, but we haven’t been able to execute when the time’s been there. But we definitely feel like that we can play with the best of them when we’re on top of our game and that’s good for our confidence. Today was a pretty good example against a good team there even though they’ve played back-to-back games, but we played a good game.

On if the team is finding its identity…
Yeah, I think the last two games at home here have been a pretty good example of how we need to play. Never give up and keep pushing and keep skating, chipping pucks ahead. When we do that, it pays off. A lot of times earlier in the year, we’ve kind of really gotten away from that and I think that’s hurt us overall, but the last couple games have been a really good example.

BOSTON BRUINS FORWARD LOUI  ERIKSSON
On the confidence with your game improving…
It’s definitely going good. You start scoring goals, the confidence goes up. It was nice to get two goals today and get the win before Christmas.

On seeing an offensive breakout coming…
Yeah, like I said a couple days ago, I’ve been feeling good. We’ve been creating chances. When you get on a roll you usually get on a good scoring streak and it keeps coming. It’s what I’m feeling right now. I have my confidence up, making plays and scoring goals. Hopefully I can continue doing that.

On having pressure taken off your line with healthy players coming back…
Our line has been really good since we’ve started playing again with Kells [Chris Kelly] and Carl [Soderberg]. Getting chances, like I said, and scoring goals. Yeah we have to keep doing that. We’re getting plenty of ice time. If we keep playing like we’ve been doing we’re going to continue scoring goals.

On doing anything differently to create this production…
Just the puck is coming to me right now. I’m finding ways to score goals and it’s just a nice feeling when you get there. That’s how I was when I played in Dallas you just kept going and the goals were coming. Hopefully I can continue like that. I’m feeling good right now so hopefully it will continue.

On being compared to Seguin’s production…
Obviously he’s scoring a lot of goals over there, but it’s not much I can do about it here. I’m just trying to play my game and try to help the team as much as I can here. These past couple games it’s been really good so hopefully I’ll continue doing that.

On being hungry around the net recently…
Yeah I’ve still been around the net before this, I just haven’t found pucks around that time and I always try to be in front of the net and try to score those goals. Right now it seems like the puck are coming to me and we’re creating chances, like I’ve been saying. It’s a nice feeling when you get that.

On the setup of your first goal…
I saw Kells [Chris Kelly] was driving the net there and Bart [Matt Bartkowski] made just a great pass. I took my time there a little bit to put it upstairs. It was nice.

On first getting the pass from Kelly, then going to Bartkowski…
Yeah I saw right away that it was a three on two and usually when the middle guy drives to the net it’s going to open up space for the guy coming behind so Bart [Matt Bartkowski] made a great play back to me.

BOSTON BRUINS FORWARD DAVID KREJCI
On feeling the best this game since being back…
Better than the last game. Skating-wise and playing with the puck a little bit more the last game but overall I felt pretty good today as well.

On Cunningham on your line…
We obviously have to change our style of game but he brings lots of energy. He’s a smaller guy but he finishes checks and he’s pretty responsible defensively as well. It’s good to have an energy, young guy on your line who wins lots of puck battles, lots of races out there. I thought he played a pretty decent game.

On winning back to back games going into the break…
It means that, you know, we can relax and have a nice couple days. But, if we want to be in the race for the playoffs we have to put some wins together. Lots of teams can win one game and then they lose, or two games and they lose one. Somehow we have to find a way to put some wins together and that’s how were going to catch the other teams.

On being on the cusp of turning things around with the top three lines producing…
Yeah for some reason we kind of got away from our game in the third. They got a goal on four, three and we kind of stopped playing and they brought their game to us. In the past we kind of showed a killer instinct and we haven’t showed it much this year. Most important thing right now is we have the win and we have to take it step by step and get ready or the next one in a couple days.

On the power play production…
Yeah, you know what, I don’t remember the last time we had a power play time. It was nice to get one with Zee [Zdeno Chara] and Torey [Krug], they hit posts as well. It’s kind of bad luck but yeah it’s nice to get some puck possession. We made some plays out there. Hopefully we’ll keep improving and hope to win some games with some goals on the power plays.

BOSTON BRUINS DEFENSEMAN KEVAN MILLER
On explaining how hard a late third period shift is when you can’t clear the puck…
Yeah, for sure it was a tough shift. We had trouble getting it out of our zone. We had a number of opportunities, in that case we may just want to take an icing, but weren’t able to do that. I think we did a good job packing it in just making sure pucks were on the outside.

On how they feel going into the break with two straight wins…
Yeah, it’s huge for us. We were trying to put some wins together before break and trying to get on a roll here and it’s a good feeling for sure.

On how much does that impact their momentum going into the break and then coming out of it…
I think it’s just more of just kind of a feeling. You know going into break after having two wins trying to start to find our game is definitely a confidence booster. We will take these next three days kind of roll with that and be ready to go.

On how the team continues to play hard despite where they sit in the standings in this recent stretch of games…
Yeah, we’ve been through a lot this year already. I think a little adversity can be good for the team in the long run. Were battling right now we’ve been through injuries, and call-ups, and a number of things. Hopefully we can put all of that together and be good to go for the next forty-six games.

On handling these next couple games approaching the half way mark of the season…
We got plenty of hockey left, we just like I said take these wins and kind of roll with them.

BOSTON BRUINS FORWARD PATRICE BERGERON
On ending on a high note before the holiday break...
Yeah, I think it was important to end up on a good note. Especially following that effort that was showed to come back in the game against Buffalo and showing some character winning in overtime. We had to come back with a strong performance tonight, and I thought we did that. We stayed with it even though it wasn’t pretty in the third. But we found a way and now we can, I guess regroup, enjoy the three days, and be ready for Columbus.

On the team being healthy and recovering from injuries...
I think so. I think there’s more in front of us for us as a team, we’ve got to keep getting better. But it is for sure nice to have everyone healthy and keep getting better as a team and as players and working at it and being ready for the second part of the season.

On the team reaching almost halfway through the season...
Yeah, it’s true. I mean, it’s still – I guess usually you use that benchmark after Christmas to kind of use it as the second part of it. But it’s true that we’re not there yet, but we’re close to it.

On David Krejci returning to the lineup and the increase in scoring...
Having Krech [David Krejci] back definitely gets us more depth on all lines and he’s definitely a great player, a big part of our team, and it’s nice to have him back. But I think every line is chipping in and working well and when you do that then you keep rolling them. It definitely helps you as the game goes on.

On the increase in scoring by multiple lines...
Yeah, I think it’s something that we’ve had to work on for the last few weeks and it’s definitely something that we know that we need to keep working on, keep getting better at. But tonight I thought was a positive – but it can’t just be one game; it’s got to keep going and keep improving in that aspect of our game.

On what allowed the team to create more offense tonight...
I think we’re sharp in our zone and I thought we were first on pucks and we created a lot of turnovers by moving our feet and being close to each other. When we do that then we keep rolling like that, we have some odd-man rushes and chances.

On the third period play tonight...
I think, I thought we still stayed with it even though it wasn’t necessarily pretty. But, you know, they’re a good team. They’re going to have a push, and they did that definitely in the third. But like I said, Tuukka [Rask] made some big saves but we stayed with it. It was nice definitely finding a way.

On the back and forth scoring chances...
Well just, I thought tonight was good to see our reaction by staying with it even though we scored one, they scored right away, and they did the same thing with the second goal. I thought we handled it better and that’s what we’ve got to keep improving I think. We’ve got to keep playing on our toes when we do get scored on or what not. So, I think we answered well with those third and fourth goals.

NASHVILLE PREDATORS HEAD COACH PETER LAVIOLETTE
On what he thinks the team is missing in Carter Hutton’s starts this season…
Some of the games we played hard when Carter started we just weren’t able to win the hockey games.  I think Hutch [Carter Hutton] has played hard when he’s in there too, it just hasn’t gone our way.

On the play of Carter Hutton tonight…
I thought he played good.  There was a couple of tough breaks, the Marchand goal where it redirects and ends up on somebody’s stick back door, there’s not much you can do about that.  The one off the rush we had two guys fall behind the net in the offensive zone, we ended up losing a man and making it a 4-on-3.  I thought he got in there and battled and I think there are some things that we could have done better in front of him.

On the play of the team in the third period...
To be honest, there weren’t a lot of chances either way in the first two periods.  It was a low attempt, low shot type of game.  I don’t know what it was at the end of two periods, 15, 11 or 18, 13, whatever it was, it wasn’t a lot of opportunities either way.  Just tight defense, defensively they are a good defensive team.  Third period I think we were a little bit more desperate.  Sometimes when you have a lead you try to sit back and protect it a little bit.  So I’m not exactly sure what the reason is.

NASHVILLE PREDATORS FORWARD COLIN WILSON
On the play of Carter Hutton…
You know, you can’t fault him at all.  We could have done a better job in front of him, clearing those pucks out and they made some good plays that we could have disrupted.

On the strong play of the team in the third period…
We have a group that believes we can win every night even when we’re down two, we have the mentality that we are going to come out with a win.  It’s unfortunate we didn’t tie it up but we can definitely build off of that character that we showed in the third.

On if he was surprised that they couldn’t put one in the net in the last three minutes...
Yeah I mean sometimes they don’t go in but again we just have to be happy with the way we played in the last twenty.  At the same time we have to put together a full sixty minutes.  Coming in off a back-to-back and the way that we battled in the third shows a lot about our team.

On the resiliency of his team…
We knew that we were a resilient team and that we have a lot of belief in our system.  We knew the way that we had to play and we didn’t do that in the first forty minutes.  So we got it going in the last twenty, but there’s a lot of confidence in our dressing room.

NASHVILLE PREDATORS FORWARD TAYLOR BECK
On if James Neal’s penalty sparked the surge leading to his goal…
I wouldn’t necessarily say it sparked it, but we knew had to come out extremely hard in the third period down a couple goals. We thought that we played a great period I mean, we could’ve been back into it with any bounces, [Tuukka] Rask made some big saves, and sometimes you just fall short.

On the first and second period efforts tonight…
I think we came out a little bit flat, weren’t happy with it. We weren’t throwing enough pucks at the net. Gotta be a lot more resilient, forechecking, throw stuff at ‘em. That’s how were going to create stuff.

On how happy they are going into the holiday break with the record they have…
Yeah, were playing extremely well right now. Tough road trip and getting two out three [wins] you gotta be happy with it anytime.

On how his team didn’t score despite being so dominant in the last three minutes of the game…
Yeah, I mean we were throwing a lot of stuff at the net. It could’ve turned either way. Sometimes that happens.

NASHVILLE PREDATORS GOALTENDER CARTER HUTTON
On going 0-4 in the games he has played in so far this season and what’s missing…
It’s alright, it’s the way it works you know what I mean.  First game I gave up four and the others games we only scored three goals in the games I played so I can only control what I can.  I thought on the four minute penalty kill, I gave our team a chance to stay in it, we pushed but we didn’t have enough tonight.

On his long and winding road to and from the NHL…
Yeah it’s been a journey for sure.  I’ve put a lot of work in back to my days in Lowell and bounced around the minors for a while and just continue to work hard and improve my game all the time.

On if he has found a home in Nashville...
Yeah I found a good spot here and I like being in Nashville.  We have a good squad here, it’s been a good year so far.  Obviously a tough loss tonight but we’ll get right back on it after the break.

On what he learns from playing behind Pekka Rinne…
Just his overall work ethic and the way he takes care of business.  You know he’s a world class goalie, he’s been our MVP all year and he’s the hardest working guy in practice every day.  We bounce a lot of stuff off of each other, he’s real open with me and he helps my game just as much as I try to help him.  We try to communicate through each other as much as possible. 

On the challenges of playing fewer games this season than he did last season...
Yeah it’s tougher.  You know it’s a lot easier when you’re playing a lot, you can get in a rhythm but that’s my job.  Peks [Pekka Rinne] is a workhorse, he plays a lot of games and when I go in I have to give our team a chance to win and tonight it obviously didn’t go our way.  At the same time, it’s been a while since I played and I thought I had some things to go on there.  I thought in the third I was pretty solid, I made some big saves and you know it’s one of those games, it’s obviously tough to swallow but you just keep working and move ahead for the next one.

On the team being so dominant in the last three minutes of the game…
Yeah it’s just one of those ones that you’re just hoping we find a way to put something in the back of the net there.  We just didn’t have it, we made our push, and it’s tough especially with the guys coming off a back to back.  These are the games I’m going to play in, the second night of a back to back and you know I thought the guys did a great job going out there at the end with six periods in two nights there and just making a big push to try and get the game for us.

BOSTON BRUINS HEAD COACH CLAUDE JULIEN PREGAME PRESS CONFERENCE AT 11:00AM
On McQuaid’s progression…
Yeah, not ready obviously. I guess his rehab is on track with what they said.

On going into the break with a win…
I think we got to string some wins together here, Caryn, there’s no doubt. This is a team that’s playing it’s second game in two nights here, they’re second time this year so I don’t know how they are on those obviously because they haven’t played that many of them. They’re a good team, they’ve had a good start to the season. We were there last time, played a really good game but just were able to manage that one point. It’s important for us, just looking at the standings, we’re in the fight here for playoff position so we have to look at it that way.

On gaining confidence from playing well against Nashville previously…
Well, I think no matter what the situation is, confidence or no confidence, we have to come out and start playing well for as close to 60 minutes as possible. As we keep mentioning day after day here, get some results from our scoring chances and from the end of the game ending up with wins. Like I mentioned with our chances, coming up with some goals and making those kind of things happen here. Again its, when you get on a roll everything seems to follow. Right now our job is to get on a bit of a roll here.

On this break being unique in sports and using it to the team’s advantage…
Well, I mean, your hoping that’s going to help your hockey club and it normally does. You’re able to clear your head and you come back and your excited to be back again. Now that before tonight’s game we’re a fairly healthy team, it’s a good opportunity for us and I’ve done that many a times. We just got to go out there and, again, play as well as we can. Our goal is to definitely go on the Christmas holiday feeling a little bit better about ourselves and that comes with hopefully a win tonight.

On not practicing before the Columbus game…
We’re gonna get a morning skate over there, but we have to leave early in the morning. That’s the way the CBA is and you have to abide by that kind of thing. You work around it the best you can.

On not being able to leave Friday night…
No, no. Although, that would have been ideal, I think, to leave at night, they won’t allow us.

On Soderberg being consistent among an inconsistent team…
Yeah I think he’s been, probably, one of our most consistent so far. He comes to play hard every night. There’s been some nights where he’s had his tough outcomes, I guess, with some of the things that have happened with him. It’s never been lack of effort with Carl [Soderberg] and I think in the end you hear me say that a lot. I like players that come to play every night, even if they don’t play well. Its guys that you can rely on that are going to give you a chance and I think its Carl’s biggest asset right now is he plays hard and takes things to heart even when things happen he feels it’s his fault. He takes it really hard. So he cares and he wants to win and a player like that is the kind of player you want on your team.

On playing three forwards and one D during regulation…
I would. Depending on the circumstances of the game. I did the one time not too long ago we got scored on. That kind of—I did it once, I’m trying to think here where it was again? Oh San Jose, that’s right it was in San Jose. So we’re down and the way the game was going I said ‘I got nothing to lose here’, so it backfired. You know, your down by a goal or two, you want to get yourself back in the game. I think we seem to create some good opportunities. Definitely something I thought about doing at times.  

On using that strategy only when trailing…
Yeah, I mean, normally I don’t think it’s—when your ahead you probably prefer a little bit safer than riskier.

On Hamilton and Krug’s progression…
I think they’ve progressed as we expected them. Both those guys are good players, they were last year too. Different payers have had they’re ups and downs. We saw Torey [Krug] come back from that injury. For a while there I think his confidence was a little low. We’ve seen Dougie [Hamilton] have some tough nights too. At the end of the day for some young players, like both of those guys for example, it’s been pretty refreshing to see how they’ve handled themselves.

On players rebounding well after bad games…
Yeah those are things again, you know, I just talked about that with Carl [Soderberg]. He competes hard and some nights are tougher nights that others. That’s expected I guess, certain guys may not always have a good game but you like to see them bounce back quick. Those guys, for the most part, have done that.
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