Can you sum up this win, especially the overtime finish?
LEFT WING - DET
Goals: 10 | Assists: 11 | Pts: 21
Shots: 136 | +/-: 4
“I think everybody dug in deep tonight. An amazing job to stick with it even going down that late in the game to find a way to battle back, get bodies in front of the net, shoot and clear up an ugly one. It was just a nice feeling to see that OT goal go in.”
Just how tough was Lundqvist today?
“He was pretty great out there. He made a couple saves that guys were thinking were going into the net but that’s why he’s one of the best goalies in the world. He makes those saves and he’s a big part of that team. It’s great that we found a way to get one extra (point) on them.”
Can you describe the game-winning play?
“Just a rush, DK threw it to Pav and I just tried to use my speed to get to the front of the net just hoping for some kind of puck, pass or whatever. If not, then I just wanted to be a screen. Luckily Pav just shot one and it hit off my stick and found a way in. I don’t know how it found a way in but I’m happy it did.”
How relieved are you guys that you came away with two points today?
“Well, I think we’re playing with a little more determination and heart, and it’s a good feeling when you put everything on the line and come out with wins.”
When Kronwall went down, was anything said during the second intermission?
“I think it’s just a moment when you have to dig down a little deeper. I thought from the start with him we were great and without him we played hard. Guys stepped in and made a difference.”
You had a game-high eight shots on goal this afternoon, was that a concentrated effort on your part?
“Yeah, I always want to get pucks to the net. Anything can happen when you’re shooting from any angle, rebounds, sneaky goals, just trying to create opportunities, and the guys I’m playing with right now are doing a great job forechecking and finding the pucks and getting them to me. We’re just making an effort to put pucks on the net and create chaos.”
What do to these last two games tell you about this team’s will?
“This is kind of the time that the leaders need to step up and I think they’ve been doing that. Obviously, Columbus was a disappointment, the first period (against) Winnipeg was a little scary but, that was kind of a moment that we looked at each other and knew we had to dig in and find a way to win some games and put some points up, and make a final push.”
What were your thoughts when you scored your first goal?
“I thought I was a little more open, nobody really around me. They’re a good defensively team, they make good plays. My focus was to get a couple quick shots off. The first one didn’t work and the second one did. Happy it did.”
You had to be lucky when they failed to score on the empty-net goal?
“Absolutely. But when you work hard, pay the price in front of the net, that’s when you get lucky bounces. It goes off Abby’s butt and finds its way to Richie and he pots one in. So that’s a guy working hard to create opportunities and tie the game.”
Can you sum up this win for your team?
Goalie - DET
GAA: 2.20 | Sv%: .924
“Huge win for us. The standings are so tight, these two points help us get back on track and get us tied with guys like Florida and Tampa.
Disappointed with the game in the final minute of the first period?
“I think we did in the first period a great job, had lots of chances and couldn’t put anything in. Lundqvist made some big saves and they score. We talked about it in the dressing just keep doing what we did in the first 19 minutes and the goals are going to come.”
What did you think of the job that Lundqvist for the Rangers today?
“Lundqvist was outstanding but I’m very happy we scored three goals and won the game.”
What are your thoughts of this team’s last two games?
“We played really good defensively, helping each other getting the puck out of the zone and a strong penalty kill.”
How concerned are you with the loss of Kronwall this afternoon?
“Kronner’s a great defenseman. Hopefully it’s not going to take long and he’s going to be back soon.”
You got knocked around a little today, did you just have to refocus and get back at it?
“Couple times they come hard to the net. They have big bodies and they try to create chaos in front of the net.”
Do all of these games feel like playoff games now?
rIGHT WING - DET
Goals: 20 | Assists: 20 | Pts: 40
Shots: 178 | +/-: 18
“That was a playoff game. It’s a huge two points for us against a good team. So, we had to do it again, find a way to win and we did. It was a huge two points.”
What have the last two games shown you about this team?
“I think when our backs are against the wall, I wouldn’t say it total was, we were still on the inside but we lost (three) in a row there and our leadership really stepped up and really took charge and carried us to two big wins. It’s an exciting time now but you’ve just got to keep moving forward and keep progressing as the season goes on.”
Did you think you’ve be OK in this game because you were getting chances?
“I think the way we were playing, you look at the shots, we half-iced him. We didn’t give him much room in the first and second there. That’s the way we gotta play and use our speed and really work to support each other and then move to offense as fast as we can and smother teams and dominate them and that’s what we can really do to give ourselves the best chance to win.”
How relieved were you when Richards scored to tie the game and Helm scored in OT?
“When Richie scored I jumped up pretty high. It was a big goal for us to get it into overtime and then when Helmer scored it was even bigger. So it was a great team win.”
Sure takes a lot of shots to eventually bet Lundqvist, doesn’t it?
“He’s one of the best I’d say, probably the best goalie. So calm and plays so deep. His reaction is like a cat. You gotta get in front of him like we did on a few of them and when you have him point blank you’ve gotta pick your best shot because he’s gonna have a shot to save it.”
Are you seeing details of playoff hockey in the last two games?
rIGHT WING - DET
Goals: 9 | Assists: 13 | Pts: 22
Shots: 138 | +/-: 4
“Yeah, you seen we had to be patient. Overall we played a lot better hockey but sometimes the bounces don’t go your way, some things happen. The last two games did go – the start against Winnipeg we played some good hockey but were down – and tonight it felt like we were doing a lot of good things and we were down a lot of the game. But you have to play a full 60 and stay with it and don’t break away from the game plan. It’s a good sign that after a tough road trip we came back and showed some resiliency against some adversity here.”
Does this team feel it’s due some puck luck?
“Yeah, you don’t think like that. Usually if you work hard and keep doing … our mentality of getting pucks to the net, shooting pucks and being more aggressive on our toes has been better the last two games. Not waiting for the other team to take it to us. When you do that, things start to go your way and the biggest thing now is consistency, you got to keep doing it the whole way in.”
What did you think of the job done by Lundqvist?
“He’s a great goalie, a lot of big saves tonight. It was fortunate to get him when he was out of position there in the end. You just got to keep peppering him.”
Can you describe your tying goal?
“Heard a lot of people tell me to shoot for five or six seconds. There’s so much traffic I couldn’t get anything through. I was waiting for Z to pop out and he got something through – well, not through, it hit Abby – but I kind of snuck back there and everybody was looking at Z I think. I snuck in there, the puck came to me and those are fun when you see an open net.”
Do you sense something different with this team over the last two games?
“We’ve put together wins before. There’s still a lot of hockey left. It is like playoff hockey, where you lose a game and you think everything is coming to an end and you win a game and people are excited. But you got to be even keeled, stay calm, huge game tomorrow, can’t let the foot off the gas, got to keep backing up these points.”
What do you think about the Rangers’ trade philosophy versus how the Wings build through the draft?
“It just depends on how it all sets up. The reason I went there when I did was you know management and ownership want to try to win every year and they do that. It doesn’t mean if you don’t make trades you’re not trying to win. There’s always different times in a franchise’s play … they feel right now they have a window, the last 5-6 years with that goalie. Why wouldn’t they try to keep adding if they can? Just like this team probably did in the late 90s and early 2000s. That’s what’s good about playing Original Six teams, they all have pride where they want to win every year. The ones I played on anyway. It’s about right now. There’s always different processes but it’s fun to be a part of.”
|Darren Helm scored a goal and set up a screen on Pavel Datsyuk's overtime winner against the New York Rangers. (Photo by Getty Images) |
What is your assessment of that one?
"I think the first thing I'd say is that I thought our process was great. I thought throughout the game I thought we were really, really, really good. Obviously you don't want to have to come from behind, you don't want to have to do it that way but I do believe a lot in process and that results follow, and not always in the short term of a singular game but if we play like that on a consistent basis, like we have the last two in terms of our determination and our energy, we'll beat lots of teams."
Was that one of your better 60-minute efforts lately?
"I think it's one of our better ones in a while. I think lots of games have ebb and flow and I don't want to take away from other efforts. Like I said before, I thought there were moments of real good in Chicago, even in Columbus, but this one from the drop of the puck, I just thought we were really, really strong?
Any updates on Kronwall?
"I have no updates, no more than what's been said. He's going to be evaluated so we should have more in the morning."
What was your overall reaction to the Richards' tying goal?
"That was a big moment for sure. I can't say I was unbelievably even-keeled at that point because it was a big goal, there's no question. It was good to see it go in because in some ways, I thought we deserved that. Again, I was real happy with the way we played."
How about Helm's game? He had eight shots?
"If you go back to Columbus, he had a bunch of shots in that game, I thought his determination at the end of the game last game was unbelievable, so he's really, I think, playing at a real good level right now. I haven't used him tons in the 3-on-3, but Tony Granato and Pat Ferschweiler both felt like we should definitely use him. Thankfully we did."
Richards said after Columbus game that details of playoff hockey have to come to the forefront, have you seen that these last two games?
"I would say he's right and I would say we've done that to a much better degree. I just think these aren't huge differences, I think we play hard all year long, but I thought we were a little, not a little better, we were much better with the puck, we didn't have nearly the number of turnovers we had at different times of the year, we were strong on battles and I thought we were overall pretty good defensively. They're a really good team, they created some chances but I didn't think we gave them lots of easy chances."
When you're not getting any goals despite good process, do you just remind them of the process?
"One hundred percent. Not that they necessarily need reminders, but 100 percent that's what I always try to do. I try not to coach on the emotion of the score, I try to coach on the process and sometimes the score doesn't tell the story. That's just hockey. We're just reminding them to keep doing the right thing. Even when we went down with four to play or whatever, I just felt like if we kept doing the right thing, we were going to have a real chance to tie it."
You only had 22 shots in New York but 43 today, how big a difference can that make?
"A little bit of that, obviously we got in at 2 in the morning in New York. I think the one thing in the league that is true is the schedule and that was a tough schedule game for us, just getting in real late. I don't think I got in my bed until 3 so I don't expect those games to be the same. I thought our effort was good that night though, but our effort tonight was exceptional."
Any thought on Lundqvist's ability to draw penalties?
What did you think when you had the empty net and they missed it twice?
"When they hit the post dead-on, I said to myself, lots of times when that happens it turns around the other way so I thought boy, we might actually score here. So I was happy to see it not go in."
You've had more than 30 shots for several consecutive games, is that a concerted effort to just shoot more?
"Yeah, I think so, I think a better effort to make sure we get the pucks and pucks to the net create chaos and I think we've done a good job of creating chaos in the last number of games, just getting them to the net and making sure we have bodies to the net."
DetroitRedWings.com editor Dana Wakiji contributed to this report.