On if road travel is taking its toll
I hate to use that as an excuse, but reality is reality. We were on the road back east for 16 days, back home for five, and now back east for eight. Then we’re only home for three and go back on the road again. It’s tough, but I’m sure every team has its own worries about travel at some point in the schedule. Except, if I ever coached back East again, I’d never [complain] ever about travel. I don’t care if we play in Spain one night and Tokyo the next. I’ll never [complain] about travel.
On the Carolina Hurricanes
I think they’re playing pretty good right now. Justin Peters has got some confidence and the players seem like they’ve said ‘Ok, we’re going to batten down the hatches.’ They’re working really hard on the defensive end of the game. When you do that, with the speed they’ve got, good things are going to happen. I think they’re pretty formidable. I think they’re licking their chops right now sitting at home last night watching us play. We better be ready to play.
On Alexander Semin
There’s a saying about Alex [laughs], ‘He’s an enigma wrapped in something, wrapped in something else.’ You never know what you’re going to get with him. He can show flashes of absolute brilliance on one minute, and then you’re going ‘What are you doing?’ the next. But he’s a tremendously skilled player who can beat you on his own when he’s on. There are a lot of weapons there when they’re firing on all cylinders.
On the Staal brothers (Eric and Jordan)
They are big. I had to deal with both of them in separate times. When [Jordan] was in Pittsburgh, he was pretty good, too. He was a force. Eric’s always been a force against us. The No. 1 key all the time is to stop Eric Staal because I think he’s a tremendous player. You’ve got two of them, and [Jiri] Tlusty has matured into a good player. You’ve got Alex Semin. You’ve got a lot of weapons there. [Nathan] Gerbe is having a great year, sort of like he’s re-born with these guys. It’s going to be tough.
On the most disappointing aspect of last night’s game
Obviously, the score. From us, it was the lack of energy we had. We just didn’t have any energy last night. Hopefully, on the other end of a back-to-back, we can find some if we have enough players to play.
On what is learned from dealing with adversity
The adversity for injuries - and again this sounds like an excuse, but it’s not - but we haven’t had our full lineup for one game yet. It’ll be good when that happens. But, you learn to live with it. We never bring it up in meetings or anything else, on who’s playing and what’s going on. So it’s never used as an excuse.
You learn a lot. When the going gets tough, the tough gets going. You know who you can count on in the trenches and in the dog days. That’s something you learn in situations like this.