Varlamov was making some saves that maybe he didn’t deserve to, did you sense any frustration from your guys tonight?
rIGHT WING - DET
Goals: 4 | Assists: 8 | Pts: 12
Shots: 50 | +/-: -1
“Yeah, when you get that many shots you’re hoping for a few more goals but he’s a good goalie and he made some good saves.”
What was your overall impression of how you guys played tonight?
“I thought we battled back well. Going down 1-nothing early I thought we played hard, played the right way but you know that’s the way it goes some night.”
What did you like about the penalty kill tonight?
“I mean, we’re still at the bottom of the standings so we’ve got a long way to go but it’s a step in the right direction for sure.”
The PK in overtime was a pretty big moment for you guys, right?
“For sure, we’re doing our best to block shots, get in lanes and obviously Petr is a huge part of our kill and he’s been outstanding. Yeah, you’re happy when you get a kill but we still have a long way to go.”
What did you think of the job Helm did with nine shots on goal?
“I don’t know, he’s shooting from everywhere. I was hoping one would go in for him, but I think it’s a good sign that he’s getting a lot of chances. They gotta start going in at some point.”
How much is Mrazek’s recent playing giving the rest of the team a bit of confidence now?
“Yeah, he’s been nothing short of amazing every night. He steps in and plays well. It’s good playing in front of a guy like that every night but you know unfortunately we couldn’t get it done for him tonight.”
What are your thoughts on tonight’s game?
Left Wing - DET
Goals: 10 | Assists: 28 | Pts: 38
Shots: 126 | +/-: 5
“I thought we did a lot of good things tonight. Shot the puck, where there for rebounds, created a lot of chances but both goaltenders, I think, where playing well. You want to get two points when you play games like this but it happens. … At least we got one.”
What did you think of the play Mike Green made to keep the puck in at the blue line and you guys scored on the power play?
“Yeah, that was nice by him to knock that down. That was nice play by Abby to find Pavel and put it in.”
Both of Avs’ goals were by guys coming off the bench, how tough are those types of plays to defend?
“They’re a little tougher because you don’t really know where they are. One was a one-time shot too. It’s tough for Petr to see those pucks but we had plenty of those chances. But that’s how it goes sometimes.”
How do you size it up when you have 45 shots on goal and come away with a shootout loss?
“You played a good game, unfortunately they scored one more than you.”
|Luke Glendening played a big role in front of the net as well as in the face-off circle, where he won 10 of 14 draws against the Avalanche on Friday. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Detroit Red Wings) |
The rink looked tilted at times, what comes to mind when you look back at this one?
"I thought we played really good. I thought we did tons of really good things. We always talk about process. I thought from a process standpoint we were, in a lot of ways excellent, to be honest with you. I thought our energy level was great, I thought we won tons of puck races and puck battles in the O-zone, I thought we shot the puck well, we had net presence. The puck just didn't go in as much as we would have liked it to. You can't necessarily change that. What you can really control is your process and I thought our process was great."
Both of their goals were scored by guys jumping off the bench, how can you prevent that?
"Unfortunately we made two mistakes there on real correctable situations so that was disappointing. But we got to make sure we do a better job of one, we stop in the slot and two, we don't over-chase out away from our net, but that's something we can look at and get better. That's what we try to do all the time is what areas can we get better at?
What did you think of the big play by Green to keep the puck in on the power play?
"Just a big part of his skill set. Sometimes guys got to make plays and he made a play there. Offensive players have to do that in order for you to be successful at times and he certainly did it there."
Avalanche blocked 25 shots plus you got 45 shots on net, is that a good sign?
"I thought we were shot-ready the whole night. I thought we did a good job delivering pucks to the net. They're going to have some blocks. Certainly when you spend that much time in someone's O-zone, they're going to have some blocks for sure. Offensively, I was happy with all parts of our game. We made a couple mistakes that ended up in our net. We should have scored more goals, we just didn't tonight. That's the way it goes sometimes. I thought our process was real good. If our process is the same on Sunday, then you do it over and over and over again, you're going to have lots of great results. So let's get ready tomorrow for Sunday."
Ericsson's goal was an example of just finding a hole and getting through?
"That's one thing we've talked to our D about making sure that we're delivering pucks to the net. Going back to the beginning of the year, we weren't, we weren't getting enough shots from our D and I think now they're really, really buying into it. They're doing a good job of delivering to the net and it doesn't have to be pretty, you just got to find a way there. The shots create chaos. I think Johnny was just trying to get it to the net and it found its way in."
Are games like this tougher to swallow when you outshoot them like that?
Left Wing - DET
Goals: 14 | Assists: 15 | Pts: 29
Shots: 100 | +/-: -2
"It's tough but it's how it goes sometimes. I thought we did a lot of good things out there, had some good chances. Varlamov made some good saves when he had to there. I think it's a positive step in the right direction here tonight. Unfortunately a little breakdown on their second goal but we found a way to tie it up and had a lot of chances all night. I thought we did a good job in the offensive zone of cycling and hanging on to pucks around the net."
Both their goals came from guys who came off the bench, how do you prevent that?
"I think we've got to play as a unit of five on the ice. The puck kind of came in the slot. We could have used better slot coverage but it's how it goes sometimes. We'll learn from that and be better because of it. We did a lot of good things. Unfortunately we couldn't find a way to get the win there but I think we can build off a lot of positives."
Is this just one of those games that sometimes happens in hockey?
"There will probably be a few games by the end of the season where we get outshot and find a way to win. That's how this game goes sometimes. There's a lot of puck luck that goes along with it. We've just got to stick with our game plan and keep moving forward here."
You got another goal from the D tonight, how much does that help?
"It's huge. I think they've been doing a great job of jumping in the play when they've had the opportunity, and getting pucks through on net. I think we've had better net-front presence in trying to screen the goalie. I thought Z did a good job of kind of getting in the eyes of Varlamov. It might have went off Duchene's stick possibly but those are the breaks you get when you put pucks on net. Great job by our defensemen. We've just got to keep that up."
Green didn't get an assist on Datsyuk's goal but play he made at blue line kept it alive for the scoring chance?
"It was an amazing play. That's the kind of skill level that he has. The play doesn't happen if he doesn't keep it in there. Great job by him. I thought our power play had a lot of good looks tonight. We got a goal there but we could have had two or three there. A lot of good things. Penalty kill was great, finished overtime and even throughout the game we were able to create momentum off that."
Did you see Pav coming on the goal?
"I kind of saw him come to the net there. The defenseman obviously tied me up there so I knew he was coming in and was all alone. Obviously if you get the puck on his stick he's going to make some great plays and he did that, got to the backhand and scored."
Varlamov hacked at you all night. Are you surprised he didn't get a penalty?
"I was surprised. I talked to the refs two or three times and they said they were watching it but maybe that's coach Patrick Roy giving him little pointers there on how to take out the net-front guy. Now I know how it feels. I was watching the video of Dino Ciccarelli when he was in front there. I think he was going to turn around and slash Roy. I wasn't going to do that obviously but yeah, it makes it tough because when he's whacking at your feet and cross-checking you I can't really stand my ground in there so I was hoping the ref was going to call a penalty but he probably . . . I don't know. It is what it is so you've just got to move past it. Hopefully I won't be facing that anymore."
What happened on the play where you batted the puck down to keep it in zone?
Defense - DET
Goals: 4 | Assists: 17 | Pts: 21
Shots: 89 | +/-: -7
“I noticed that he was on his backhand and was hoping he wouldn’t get all of it so it was just in arm’s length reach, I was lucky enough to bat it down.”
How much of a lift does it give a player when you make a play like that?
“It would have been nicer if the puck went in the net when I shot it. Good effort by the guys, Z, Abby and Pav to really bear down in front of the net and get that goal. It was huge for us.”
How much of a difference does it make when you have defensemen scoring more often?
“When us defensemen contribute, that extra goal that maybe is the difference at times. I know when other teams’ defensemen jump up into the play and shoot pucks it causes a lot of confusion. I noticed we’ve done it a little bit more and pucks are going into the net for D-men, which is nice to see.”
Was this the best you have been at dominating puck possession and directing pucks at the net?
“It’s a tough one, especially to lose in a shootout. I thought the team played really well. We had puck possession for most of the night. We had a lot of scoring chances that just a bounce here or there, didn’t go in, just off to the side of the net. It’s a testament to how well the forwards have been playing, getting pucks deep and creating turnovers, getting pucks to the net and shooting the puck.”
Is production from the defense one of the reasons the power play has been better?
“Maybe. I think it’s just the mentality of shooting the puck altogether. We’ve emphasized as D-men to do that. We worked on it in practice and talked a lot of about it.”
What’s worked well on this homestand?
“It’s a commitment to winning at home, period. The mentality of us playing each game to win, especially here at home in front of our own fans. A lot on the line but we’ve been composed and hopefully we can continue that.”
DetroitRedWings.com editor Dana Wakiji contributed to this report.