COACH BILL PETERS ON BACKLUND'S STATUS
"I think he's real close, but we've got to be smart, too. … If he doesn't (play), we'll go with Bennett in the middle. It's an easy little switch, we know what we're going to do if he can't go, so it's not like it'll be a last-minute decision."
PETERS ON RIEDER AND DEPTH AT FORWARD
"It's real good. It's healthy competition. We've got call-up guys - probably four guys - we're more than comfortable with that can play in the NHL, and can come up and play at any time. So, you're 16 deep up front. Then, within the group, you've got guys that can move around and play different positions. The thing with Tobi (Rieder), and we played him in Game 8 of our exhibition season just to give him one last look… If Backs goes, he'll be out - but he doesn't, he'll be in. When he gets in, he'll give us good, valuable minutes."
PETERS ON LUCIC-RYAN-BENNETT TRIO
"I think it could be a real good line. Responsible in both directions, and a heavy line in the offensive zone. Doc (Ryan) will do a good job managing the puck, getting it to where it needs to be. Then it's up to Looch and Benny to hang on to it and spend some time in the O zone. It can be dangerous off the rush, and dangerous within the zone. ... Should have lots of character on that line."
Video: "We're excited about the opportunity in front of us"
PETERS ON TOP-LINE GROWTH
"Just continue to evolve. They're all young guys and there's still lots of room for growth with those guys. They want to get back to where they were early in the year last year. It takes a little bit of time, but they've played enough in the pre-season and should hit the ground running tomorrow. Then, be a little more accountable away from the puck. You don't have to give up as much in transition. I'd like to see our team, in general, be better in transition from offence to defence, and eliminate the odd-man rushes that we've given up in the past."
MARK GIORDANO ON THE NEW SEASON
"Everything about last year is behind us. You want to take forward some of the way we played, some of the style, the tendencies that we had. But as far as anything that happened, any of the results, really, it's in the rearview mirror. We start fresh tomorrow, as does everyone else - everyone is saying the same thing today about the opportunity that lies ahead."
Video: "Everything about last year is behind us"
GIORDANO ON OPENING AGAINST THE AVS
"Anytime you play a team in the playoffs, there's a rivalry. There'll be some heat, there'll be some fire. It's Game 1 and everyone's ready to go. But we've got to play our game against a really good team. They made some moves, a lot of people seem to think that they're going to be one of the better teams in the league, so we know we've got to bring our A Game. You've got to bring it every night now in the NHL. Our style is going to be aggressive and that's how we know we're going to be successful."