After getting into Orange County late following a 3-2 win in Winnipeg last night, Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau gave his players the day off from practice. But he was at Honda Center long enough to talk about the team's 2-1 road trip and bouncing back from a rough opening-night loss in Colorado.
Things didn’t get off to the start you would have hoped for, but how did you view the road trip?
In the end, our goal was to win the week. Winning the week is winning two out of three. The first one didn’t go as planned, and I think that was an eye-opener for everybody. I thought we played a little better against Minnesota and I thought we played really well last night in Winnipeg. So if this is the stage that we’re going at, and we just continue going on that front and getting better and better, I think we’re in good stead. But we can’t stay status quo. We’ve got to get better.
How did you approach the loss on opening night? Was it a concern or were you not worried because it’s just one game out of 82?
Well, I always worry about it. I’m not going to ever say, “Hey, it’s just one of our 82.” We have to improve, and when we see faults with our team, we have to jump on them and make them better or we’re going to be in trouble. We addressed it, and the guys have a lot of pride anyway. They practiced a lot harder the next two days, and we were good.
"Sometimes when you outplay a team in the first period and you don’t really get rewarded, it goes one of two ways: You either get blown out in the end, or you get so determined, you end up coming back and winning the game. I think the latter was what happened to us last night, and a lot of it was because they did it for Teemu." - - Boudreau
What did you think of the performance last night in Winnipeg?
We played what we call in hockey terms, playing fast. We were fast and kept the puck out of our zone. When you do that, you’re not going to allow a lot of goals. I think any time you’re in an opposing team’s building, and you can hold them to 17 shots, you’re doing a really good job. That’s what we did. Especially on the back end of a back-to-back, when you’re the team that traveled and got in late and you’re fatigued and everything, that’s the positive that I saw in last night’s game. We didn’t score a lot of goals, but we had opportunities. Eventually those opportunities are going to go in.
With back-to-back games like that, can you talk about the value of having two good goaltenders in Viktor Fasth and Jonas Hiller?
I thought Viktor’s first period wasn’t extremely good last night, but his mental toughness came through and he battled in the second and third. I thought “Hilly” played a good game in Minnesota, kept us in the game when we needed it. We’ve thought all along that both of those goalies are No. 1s. That being said, we’ll continue to use them that way going forward.
Did you feel like the guys wanted to win that one even more for Teemu, since it was his last time in Winnipeg?
I really do believe that. Sometimes when you outplay a team in the first period and you don’t really get rewarded, it goes one of two ways: You either get blown out in the end, or you get so determined, you end up coming back and winning the game. I think the latter was what happened to us last night, and a lot of it was because they did it for Teemu.