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Enough quotes to fill a notebook

by Phil Coffey
Washington Capitals interim head coach Bruce Boudreau compares getting an
NHL head coaching job to a fairy tale.
The NHL schedule will change for next season, teams are assessing their play roughly a quarter into the regular season and lots of general hockey talk.

No, you don’t want to miss this week’s assortment of quotes.


"When you think about what it's going to be like, you never actually think of what it's going to be like. You think about the Cinderella story of what it's like, you know? ... You think, 'Oh, man, the NHL."'

-- Bruce Boudreau on getting his first chance to coach in the NHL with the Washington Capitals.


"It's tough to say over a career. Let Roberto win a couple Cups first, then we'll see. But right now he's as good as any goalie's ever been."

-- Vancouver’s Aaron Miller on Roberto Luongo. Miller also played with Patrick Roy in Colorado.


"We don't give up six goals and we don't give up easy goals like that when we fight to come back. It's just out of our character. It's back to the drawing board and find a way out of this."

-- Ottawa’s Jason Spezza after a wild 6-5 loss to Nashville Thursday night, the Senators’ fifth straight loss.


“The last couple years would have been tough even with a full lineup. Now we’ve even been getting points on the road. There were a lot of positives.”

-- Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith


“I just think the point thing was weighing me down. I wanted to get it over with. There was a lot of pressure. Once it was over with, it was like the weight of the world was lifted off of me. Now you don’t have to worry about records anymore, just play loose and have fun.”

-- Dallas Stars center Mike Modano


“We know what our identity is as a hockey club now. First and foremost, we want to play well defensively and we also want to be a good forechecking team that can create turnovers. It allows you to have team success. Finally, we have that. There’s not really a missing link.”

-- New Jersey Devils coach Brent Sutter


“I’ve learned a long time ago in this business not to have a long memory. We’ve played well five of the last six games, but it doesn’t mean a thing when you go on the road.”

-- Columbus Blue Jackets coach Ken Hitchcock


Quote of the Week

"Who likes losing? We’re in a winning business. As I’ve said, we have plenty of time to turn this around. But we better start doing it soon. If you look around our dressing room, with the exception of Ottawa, we have just as much talent as the rest of the teams. You can find all the excuses you want about why we’re not winning, but the bottom line is the players in here are responsible and we have to do better."

-- Leafs captain Mats Sundin.

“Coming in there, our team wasn’t very good at the time. We weren’t selling out and we were there in a transition time. Obviously it was nice to be part of bringing that city back to where it should be and to where it is today. It’s a place that I love. It’s where my kids were born. A lot of really good hockey memories, a lot of good things happened there.”

-- Anaheim’s Todd Bertuzzi on returning to Vancouver this week.


“We’re vastly improved in a lot of areas, but we’re going to have a lot of tests coming up. It only gets harder during the year, and we can’t just accept that this is good hockey we’re playing. We have to keep going.”

-- Sabres goalie Ryan Miller


”It’s who you surround yourself with: A great scouting staff and people who understand the CBA. Frank (Provenzano) is a genius at that. As long as you have people who understand where you want to take this team, it doesn’t matter if you’re an ex-player or not. I think you get a better feel for the players if you are. I certainly understand what they’re going through night after night, but I don’t think it makes you better or worse (as a general manager).”

-- Brett Hull on becoming the co-GM with Les Jackson in Dallas.


"He's an elite-level player. Not too many people can carry the puck into the offensive zone and make those kinds of moves. He's a special player."

-- Ducks coach Randy Carlyle on Ryan Getzlaf.


“If we’re going to beat that team, we’ve got to make sure we get down in the dirt with them. We’ve got to make sure we finish checks and make sure we do the things that they do so effectively in order to play nasty against them.”

-- Kings coach Marc Crawford on competing against Anaheim.


“We don’t know what we’re capable of doing, and that’s exciting. We believe we can (make noise). We put ourselves behind the eight-ball early and made it difficult, but this team is starting to grow into itself. And we’ve yet to play with a full lineup.”

-- Devils winger Jamie Langenbrunner said after the Devils swept a four-game road trip for their longest winning streak of the season.


Well Said

"You guys know my view on some members of the media. Some of the stuff they write is just ... I've said it a million times and it's true. It can only be ascribed to a drug-induced fantasy."

-- Anaheim GM Brian Burke was somewhat puzzled at published speculation he would leave the Ducks to become GM of the Maple Leafs.

“I knew what to expect. I’ve been in the League too long – it’s not like I played three years and then got a contract. To me it bottoms down to winning, I can’t stress that enough. That’s why I wanted to come to New York, because if you win here, there’s nothing else like it. It would be a different story if we were in last place.”

-- Rangers center Scott Gomez


“We still have the best record in the league last I checked. There are 29 teams in the League that would like to switch records with us last I checked. We just have to play better.”

-- Ottawa Senators coach John Paddock


“I know the players are pretty excited right now, and they’re proud of what they’ve done, but we’ve got a long way to go. We’ve won four games (in a row). Last time I checked, I know that doesn’t mean too many (championship) rings.”

-- Well-grounded Phoenix Coyotes coach Wayne Gretzky


”We have the capability of being a great team. We just have to get back to doing the little things. Everybody’s got to believe that the guys in the room can do it.”

-- Toronto’s Jason Blake


"Our people are sexy, who wouldn't want them? But they all have contracts and I don't think they want to go anywhere. The media in Toronto are dreaming in Technicolor."

-- Detroit Red Wings Vice President Jim Devellano on other published speculation that a host of Red Wings officials would be headed to Toronto.


“We’ve built a good ethic in a year’s time. In the past, when we didn’t have our legs, we lost games trying to do too much. Now we stay in the system, wait for the other team to crack or look for our own chances. That’s a veteran team. ... I’d say we’re 20 percent off from dominating a game completely.”

-- Columbus Blue Jackets captain Adam Foote


"It's interesting; really, to me, it is background noise, I'm focused on my job. Now, can we completely block it out when it affects family or children? No you can't. And we stress to our players, make sure you're focusing on the task at hand. I'm a proponent of controlling what you can control and that requires a great deal of mental strength. Just like any professional endeavor."

-- Toronto Maple Leafs GM John Ferguson on dealing with the speculation his job is in jeopardy.

Material from personal interviews, wire services, newspaper, and league and team sources was used in this report.


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