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Post-Game Quotes at Ottawa

by Bill Roose / Detroit Red Wings

PETR MRAZEK

Petr Mrazek
Goalie  - DET
Record: 22-11-6
GAA: 2.11 | Sv%: .927
Describe that overtime save on Ryan?

"Anderson made some big saves as well, 3-on-3, lots of chances back and forth. Too bad we didn’t score. Pav had some good chances there."

How did that shot off the head in the first affect you?

"No effects. I didn’t see the pucks coming. I saw it at the last second, got it to my neck(?). Hit a piece of the plastic on my neck but I was fine."

Did you see an improvement in the defense?

"We played well defensively today. Some bad breaks there, some bad bounces. That’s what happens in a hockey game. We wanted the second point. Better one than nothing."

What happened on the tying goal?

"I didn’t see it. I think it was like three guys in front of me there. I lost it. I just lost the puck. Tried to find it through traffic. Just couldn’t see it."

Did you feel better than the last few games?

"I wouldn’t say I felt different. I felt all those games pretty good. Sometimes after game, when how I said everything goes in, you just have to battle through it and then go for next game."

HENRIK ZETTERBERG

Henrik Zetterberg
Left Wing  - DET
Goals: 12 | Assists: 29 | Pts: 41
Shots: 141 | +/-: 2
Looking back at this one, what comes to mind first?

"Tight game, weird goals. Unfortunately, we couldn't go all the way."

You had a better defensive effort tonight?

"We did. We played better, we didn't give them that much. I think we focused a little bit more on not turning the puck over. I thought it was a lot of nothing-nothing shifts, 50-50 shifts. As I said, it was turnovers that both teams capitalized on."

What did you see on the tying goal?

"A shot from the point, close in. It could happen in the first period but it happened in the third period. That will happen. If you play in games you will get those chances and sometimes puck goes in, sometimes they're not going in."

How about the save Petr made in overtime?

"Big, huge. Those are the kind of chances that are happening 3-on-3. I thought we had some good chances, they had some good chances but no one was able to find the back of the net in 3-on-3 there."

Did you feel like you guys took a step forward?

"Yeah, we did. We played better. Obviously we want two points when we come back and play a little bit better. We kind of gave away a few points here lately. We want two points. But we get one and we move on to the Rangers tomorrow."

Did you like the way Athanasiou maximized his limited ice time?

"He's a good player, he's got really good speed. I think he sees the ice really well. He's going to be a good player for us for many, many years. It was a turnover there and he just stepped into it and it was a nice goal."

Nyquist did a good job forcing that turnover?

"Yeah, both Nyquist and Tatar were pressuring their D, and eventually the puck came up."

JUSTIN ABDELKADER

Justin Abdelkader
RIGHT WING  - DET
Goals: 14 | Assists: 18 | Pts: 32
Shots: 116 | +/-: -3
Did you guys take a step forward?

"I think so. I think a step in the right direction that way. But we've got to find a way, being up 2-1, to kind of close it out there. Unfortunate we gave up that one towards the end there but that's how it goes."

It seemed to get chippy, is that just the intensity with points on the line?

"Yeah, I think so. They're a team that's battling for their lives. They're a few points back and they're almost in must-wins each night, us the same. We're right there on the fringe now after losing a few so we've got to find a way to accumulate points and get wins."

Five straight road losses, can't afford to lose points right now?

"It's funny because we played so well on the road for a stretch there, now we've seemed to kind of get away from that. I think anytime you're on the road you've got to play a more simple game. I think even at the start of this game, we were turning pucks over, weren't getting pucks behind. We're a team that likes to get the tempo as high as possible and skate and I think we can do a better job of that."

What aspects tonight were a step in the right direction?

"I think defensively we did do a lot better, we didn't give up as many 2-on-1s, 3-on-2s, odd-man rushes that we've done in the past. I think playing more as a unit of five, continue to get better at that. Obviously it was a tight contested game tonight. Like I said, they're a team that's playing for their lives to stay in it here. Obviously we're a team that needs to get points also."

How about Athanasiou's impact in limited ice time?

"He's obviously an elite skater, he can create offense just with his legs. I think he's got a good skill set to go with it. So he's been a positive. As he earns coaches' confidence, he'll get more and more ice time. I think for him, just continue plugging away, that's working on having a two-way game all-around, defensively and offensively. I think he can be a really good player for us."

How about Mrazek, especially that save in overtime?

"Petr's bailed us out a lot this year. He's a goalie that can make those big saves and change momentums and change games around. That was obviously huge for us. I thought Anderson made some good saves for them, too. I thought the goaltending was good on both ends."

JEFF BLASHILL

Erik Karlsson had a rough second period, with gaffs that led to both Red Wings' goals. (Photo by Getty Images)

What were your thoughts after this one?

“I thought we were much better defensively. First of all our defensemen played really good. But I thought as a five-man unit we did a good job of reloading back above the puck. I didn’t think we gave them lots until the third there when they started to push a little bit. But I thought overall a much better defensive effort.”

Is it frustrating to get just one point, felt you deserved two?

“I don’t know about deserved, I thought in the end it was a fairly even game. They played hard, too. I thought we were certainly positioned to get the second one and we didn’t, so that’s frustrating. But frustration, we can’t let that get to us, we got to make sure we keep playing the right way. I told the guys yesterday that we could play great and not win. That’s the reality sometimes, and I’m not saying we played great. But we played a lot better. We got to do the same thing tomorrow night. You just have to have repeatable efforts night in and night out.”

Is Athanasiou maximizing his minutes?

“I think there’s few guys who can do that. It’s real hard to play, and I think he was in the seven-minute range tonight, that can play the seven minutes but keep your focus and be able to go out and still have a positive impact in the game. I thought he had a positive impact in the game tonight. So good for him, keep battling, keep doing things the right way.”

How about the save by Mrazek on Ryan in overtime?

“He’s got that ability for sure, to come back and play real well. That was a huge save; it was a great move by Bobby Ryan and he was able to stay with him. So I thought that was real incredible. It was unfortunate, I thought he looked good in the shootout, too, but they found a way to score goals (one) in the shootout.”

What is Larkin's status for tomorrow?

“I’d anticipate Larkin playing tomorrow for sure. I think Larkin could have played tonight but it would have been about 80 percent and I’m not a big believer in playing guys like that when you have 100 percent guys there. The other side of it, too, I didn’t want him to play two 80 percent games with back to back. It’s hard to when you play tonight and then play tomorrow, so I’d anticipate him being in the lineup tomorrow.”

Is Howard starting tomorrow?

“We’re going to evaluate the lineup, the whole lineup, and make decisions tomorrow.”

ANDREAS ATHANASIOU

Andreas Athanasiou
Center  - DET
Goals: 2 | Assists: 3 | Pts: 5
Shots: 17 | +/-: 1
That was a pretty opportunistic goal, wasn’t it?

“It was just kind of a fortunate bounce. I don’t know if he saw me there. The puck kind of bounced out and (Craig) Anderson was deep in his net, so it was just a good bounce for me and I was happy to put it in.”

How did the play develop?

“I hopped off the bench and saw they had them outnumbered. They were putting a lot of pressure on them, which is huge there and I was fortunate for that puck to pop out with their pressure.”

Almost scored in third too when you brought puck between legs. Is that a sign that you’re feeling more confident?

“I think it was just a play that developed. Hank passed the puck over and it was just kind of a good way, get the puck between your legs and protect it and kind of get that inside position on the D-man stepping up on you. I was fortunate to get on the inside of him and get a chance on it.”

Do you feel like you are maximizing your ice time since you were recalled?

“Yeah always. Whatever opportunity you get you have to make the most of it and do the best to help the guys win, whether it’s scoring a goal to build momentum or just going out there and working hard in the D-zone.”

Is it an adjustment to playing less minutes than you were used to in AHL Grand Rapids?

“You’ve got to be ready whenever you hear your name called. You know how to play the game whether you’re playing 5-10 minutes or 10-20 minutes. It’s hockey. You’ve always got to be ready.”

Is this game a step in right direction for you?

“It’s definitely a big thing. It’s tough to lose that one in a shootout but it’s a step forward from last game. We can move forward here going to New York.”

What was the reaction of guys on the bench when Petr made that save on Ryan in overtime?

“It’s huge. You can always count on Petr to swing that momentum into our favor. In OT when you make a huge save like that it’s a big thing.”

What are your thoughts on the pace of OT in the NHL?

“There’s so much ice out there and these players, when they get that time can really wind up and get that speed going. You can see that and I think it’s a lot of fun.”

DetroitRedWings.com editor Dana Wakiji contributed to this report.

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