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Post-Game Quotes vs. Flames

by Bill Roose / Detroit Red Wings

RILEY SHEAHAN

Riley Sheahan
Center  - DET
Goals: 3 | Assists: 4 | Pts: 7
Shots: 50 | +/-: -8
From the standout of a team game, how much better was tonight than Friday?

“I think we’re happy with it. We had some good offense going and once we realized when we put the puck behind them and out-skated them we had some success, so we’re just trying to do that and get out of our zone as quick as possible and things were working for us.”

The goal that was eventually given to Nyquist, did it not go off of you?

“We just tried to get some movement off the faceoffs and DK made a good play sliding to the middle and then Nyquie just had a good shot on net and we just tried to get in the goalie’s eyes and Tats actually made a good play picking a guy in the net-front area and puck just found its way in.”

Did the puck hit your stick?

“No, no, Nyquie I think was straight in.”

How key is it when the opposition can’t clear their zone like the third goal?

“Yeah, especially in the second when your bench is close to the o-zone you can keep cycling around and get changes and keep the puck in the o-zone, which is huge because then they get tired and when that happens I think it’s just obvious that it’s hard to play d-zone, and opportunities can come easier.”

How satisfying was it that you exploded for three goals after they took a 1-0 lead?

“Yeah, for sure, when you can regroup after a goal scored against you and come back strong it’s huge, and I think our team’s got a lot of character and I think the leadership group and the experienced guys can get us young guys up and make us feel comfortable so we can come out of the gate strong.”

Does this team still need to learn how to close out games?

“Yeah, I think we did a good job, especially (when) the four on four came at the end of the game, and it turned into a power play for them when they pulled the goalie. We’ve just got to be sound in our own zone and make smart plays even though we have some pressure on us. I think just making smart plays and not gripping our sticks too tight, and just getting the puck out.”

How big was it to get that third goal and be up two-goals to start the third period?

“Yeah, it’s huge. I think one of the things that our team does well is kind of not hold back when we have a lead, so we’ve just got to learn how to do that, and not hold back in a sense where we dump pucks in and kind of not make plays. Just go in there forecheck hard and try to make plays and try to get more goals.”

How important has it been that you’ve taken advantage of winning games at home this month?

“Yeah, it’s huge. I think the advantage at home is definitely something in your favor, and when you can come out strong and play a full game and keep that going, get your confidence up, it’s huge. The fans here are amazing and it’s fun playing here, and I know all the guys are … they’re excited when they come to the rink and we can go out there and play in front of our fans.”

How important was it to end this short losing streak?

“Yeah, for sure. When it lags, you come to the rink you don’t really feel right. You’re gripping your stick too tight, things like that, and if you can put a stop to it and come out with a game like we had today it definitely helps and builds confidence.”

BRAD RICHARDS

Brad Richards
rIGHT WING  - DET
Goals: 3 | Assists: 5 | Pts: 8
Shots: 58 | +/-: 5
How important has this month been for this club?

“We’re playing really well lately. Everybody’s good in this league so it’s good to, you know, close that out. We’ve got one more game that we want to go after here before the break.”

How encouraged are you with the way you’ve been playing since coming back from a back injury?

“Just keep plugging away. You never feel as good coming off injuries as you’d like. A new team, every day that goes by it’s gonna feel better and better. I’ll feel better in March than I do in December; that’s just normal. … Trying to find my role here.”

Did it look like Zetterberg forced a turnover on your goal?

“I didn’t see. I came off the bench and didn’t see what happened. Just happy to see a puck in the middle of the ice with no one around and going slow enough where I knew I could step into it.”

Did it look like a Flames defenseman Mark Giordano dove in an attempt to block your shot?

“Yeah, that made me … I had to shoot on that side of the net. I just had to make sure I didn’t hit him, and that was it. It’s nice when you’re down the middle getting pucks laid out for you.”

How encouraging was it that tonight’s start was far better than Friday’s effort?

“Well, that wasn’t hard to do. The other night was pretty bad, so we probably could have came in blindfolded and started better than we did the other night. It’s good that we bounced back from a goal and didn’t let that affect us and got back in the game, and kept going, kept pushing.”

HENRIK ZETTERBERG

Henrik Zetterberg
CENTER  - DET
Goals: 6 | Assists: 20 | Pts: 26
Shots: 75 | +/-: 5
How much do you appreciate tonight's early effort as opposed to Friday night?

"Yeah, we wanted to come out better than we did the last game and we did. Overall I thought we played a good game. Got a little tight there in the end, 4-on-4 and they pulled the goalie so it was a power play for them basically. But it was nice when Abby got that empty-netter and we got two points."

How much did scoring two goals in less than a minute in the second switch the momentum?

"It did. It was a big part of the game right there when we tied it up and then the second goal right away gave us a little momentum, a little confidence."

How much of a difference did the insurance goal make when they made their push in the third?

"Yeah, it did. It's always nice to get two. Sometimes you want to get three. But I think we tried to go after the next goal in the third, we didn't stop playing. We played the way we wanted in the third. Obviously Mrazek, really good again and saved us when we needed him to."

The Flames were one of the hottest teams coming in, how happy are you with how you responded?

"Yeah, absolutely. Every team that comes in here wants to win and you've got to be on your toes if you want to get two points."

How important would it be to get Brad Richards going on a more consistent basis offensively?

"I think he has been good, ever since he started playing with Pavel and Helm, or basically after he came back from the injury. He's making the right plays, he's a smart player, he's got a lot of skill. He always finds that open ice and makes the right plays so it's fun to see him get a goal and he will get more."

Blashill said yesterday you were questionable, were you questionable in your mind?

"Not really. Something happened last game but I felt better this morning."

How nice was it to see Kindl step in and play well with Ericsson out?

"He's playing really well. It's really hard to come in for him being out for that long but every time he does, he comes in and he hasn't missed a beat. He's a really good player and played really good tonight."

Jurco and Andersson have stepped in as well, what does that say about the team's depth?

"Yeah, you need that. When guys go down, you need guys to come in and play well and we have that."

PETR MRAZEK

Petr Mrazek
Goalie  - DET
Record: 10-5-3
GAA: 2.35 | Sv%: .925
How rewarding was this win?

"Yeah, a huge two points. We knew they were going to come hard. They played some good games before us. They played last night so we tried to jump on them and play for 60 minutes."

What was the best aspect of the team's game?

"I would say that when we tied the game we had lots of chances. We could have scored more than three goals in the second period."

How much did those two quick goals for the lead give the team momentum?

"It’s going to help the team when you score two goals in a minute, maybe two minutes. We didn’t give them a chance after that."

Did you know you moved into ninth all-time in NHL wins by a Czech goalie?

"I didn’t know that."

You passed Jiri Chra.

"Oh really?"

How nice was it to rebound from Friday's performance?

"It’s always big when you play well after the last game. We knew we didn’t play well (Friday)."

JEFF BLASHILL

Dylan Larkin celebrates his 12th goal of the season in the Red Wings 4-2 win over the Calgary Flames. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Detroit Red Wings)

What were your overall impressions of the game tonight?

“I thought our second period was the way we have to play hockey to be real successful. I thought we did a really good job in the second of getting pucks behind, getting on the forecheck, creating turnovers and then spending time in the o-zone. When I look back at the year so far, when we’ve been a really good to great hockey team it’s been when we have lots of time in the O-zone. We seem to be a real good o-zone team and then we kind of track, transition and go right back at it, so that would be what I like the most. I thought Petr held us in the first, I didn’t think we were good enough in the first, but we got going a little bit. At the end it gets a little bit crazy but that’s part of continuing to learn how to win.”

How much of a lift did the team get from the goals scored midway through the second?

“It’s a big lift for sure. This game lots of times is about momentum, the teams are so close, so when you score you gain lots of momentum and I thought we kept that momentum in the second.”

Was third goal huge, providing some cushion heading into the third period?

“I think the more cushion you give yourself the better chance you’re going to have to win hockey games and certainly goals like that at critical moments are big. We would have liked to make it 4-1 to make it even better. Certainly to make it 3-1 was good.”

How important is it that you have Kindl able to provide along the blue line?

“I think in order to have success, I think one of the reasons the Red Wings have been a perennial playoff team, is because of organization depth. In the last four years or so I’ve seen it firsthand with a bunch of guys I had in GR came up and did a good job. That can really separate organizations. You can judge teams just based on their team that you start with but as you go through – Kenny said it at camp, you’re going to need 16 forwards, 8-9 D and so we need guys to be able to step in. I think it’s hard on those guys when they haven’t played in a while, so it’s even harder on the guys that have been here than the guys who might be called up, because you got to get a little of the rust off. I thought Kindl as the game went on his game got stronger.”

What did you think of the job that Zetterberg tonight, despite getting banged up the other night?

“I thought he did a real good job. Yesterday he was a sore. That’s Z to me, his character is unbelievable. I asked him ‘are you going to play for sure?’ he said “100 percent, there’s no doubt about it,’ and that to me is what makes him special.”

What impresses you most about the way your team got the job done?

“I thought our second period was the way we have to play hockey to be real successful. I thought we did a really good job in the second of getting pucks behind, getting on the forecheck, creating turnovers and then spending time in the o-zone. When I look back at the year so far, when we’ve been a really good to great hockey team it’s been when we have lots of time in the o-zone. We seem to be a real good o-zone team and then we kind of track, transition and go right back at it, so that would be what I like the most. I thought Petr held us in the first, I didn’t think we were good enough in the first, but we got going a little bit. At the end it gets a little bit crazy but that’s part of continuing to learn how to win.”

How big of a lift is it getting two quick goals in the second period?


“It’s a big lift for sure. This game lots of times is about momentum, the teams are so close, so when you score you gain lots of momentum and I thought we kept that momentum in the second.”

How huge was it getting that third goal to provide some cushion going into the third period?

“I think the more cushion you give yourself the better chance you’re going to have to win hockey games and certainly goals like that at critical moments are big. We would have liked to make it 4-1 to make it even better. Certainly to make it 3-1 was good.”

The organization has talked about depth but you have seen it here recently, tonight with Kindl?

“I think in order to have success, I think one of the reasons the Red Wings have been a perennial playoff team, is because of organization depth. In the last four years or so I’ve seen it firsthand with a bunch of guys I had in GR came up and did a good job. That can really separate organizations. You can judge teams just based on their team that you start with but as you go through – Kenny said it at camp, you’re going to need 16 forwards, 8-9 D and so we need guys to be able to step in. I think it’s hard on those guys when they haven’t played in a while, so it’s even harder on the guys that have been here than the guys who might be called up, because you got to get a little of the rust off. I thought Kindl as the game went on his game got stronger.”

How does it feel to be a part of the 800th win at Joe Louis Arena?

"I hadn’t thought about it but it is a big deal in the sense that this place is great. The history here is amazing and to be a little part of that is a pretty cool thing."

How would you assess Richards' play?

"I think Richards has been real good even before he started scoring. I thought his play was real good. It just wasn’t – the production wasn’t necessarily coming. We stuck with it because we thought the process was really good and now the production is starting to come. I mean that shot, that’s an unreal shot. He makes plays with Pav. Helm can do a lot of skating for both those guys, can get on pucks and provide lots of energy. We think it’s been a good line."

Do you expect Ericsson back next game?


"We’ll judge tomorrow. We’ll see tomorrow."

How important is it to take advantage of these home games?

"You just want to win every game. And certainly we’ve had a large stretch here at home. You want to make your road easier than harder, but you want to win every game. I feel real confident that we can go on the road and win. I think it has everything to do with our play. Now with that said, the building’s been rocking. It’s been great. The fans have been great. We understand that and we think this is one of the real momentum-building rinks in the league. We talked about the second period, that’s the type of energy and momentum you can gain from it. We want to win everywhere, on the road and at home but certainly to take advantage of these types of crowd is a great thing."

This is the second game in a row you’ve dominated in the face-off circle, how important is that?


"I had one analytics guy tell me you should be at 49.5 percent in order in order to maximize. You should lose more than you should win. If you’re 49.5 you’re perfect. If you’re 50.5 you’re not as good, so I’m not sure. Two areas where face-offs are critical. Power play and penalty kill. I think specialty team face-offs are even more important that five on five. But certainly having the puck – we’re a team that wants the puck. We don’t want to give the puck up, so starting with the puck I believe helps out. That guy didn’t."

What are your expectations for Nosek and Ouellet?

"I’m not sure if they’ll play or not but if they do, Ouellet’s been a real good defenseman every time he’s been up here. He’s been real good and at a consistent level for Grand Rapids. We think he’s ultimately an NHL defenseman. If he gets an opportunity to play we expect him to play at a high level.

"I’m a big fan of Tomas Nosek. He does a lot of things right. He’s a very smart player both offensively and defensively. He’s a real good penalty killer. One of the reasons we brought him up is his ability to kill penalties."

DetroitRedWings.com editor Dana Wakiji contributed to this report.

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