Your line was again aggressive at putting pucks on net, how frustrating is it that more pucks aren’t going in?
Left Wing - DET
Goals: 4 | Assists: 7 | Pts: 11
Shots: 34 | +/-: -4
“For sure, especially when you hit the post and the bar. We were shooting the puck. It just didn’t go in. We have to do a better job at net front. It was a tough game. We play up and down and they score goals.”
Can you talk about battling from behind in the third?
“There’s no easy games here. I can tell you that. Obviously we are frustrated. You feel you should do better and you could win the game but there are games like this. You won’t score a goal and they will. I feel this was one of them. They played structured and we just have to do a better job.”
You’re getting chances, so are you confident that offense will come?
“Yeah for sure. With this game I felt like we had lots of good opportunities we just didn’t put the puck in. Over the time, when the chances are coming, you feel more comfortable and score more goals.”
What did you think of the job Datsyuk did in his season debut tonight?
“He was great. Again, he hit the post, too. It could be different if he put that in. It’s not easy to come with no training (camp) like this and I think he did a pretty good job.”
How much did you know about their goalie?
“I think he’s doing a pretty good job this season. We watched some highlights and I think he’s pretty solid.”
|Dylan Larkin looks to make a play in front of the Sharks net during the second period of Friday's 3-2 loss at Joe Louis Arena. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Detroit Red Wings) |
Your thoughts on the game tonight?
“I thought we came out and played pretty well. I thought until their third goal we played with good energy. I thought we did some things really, really well. I thought their third goal deflated us too much. We can’t allow that to happen. I would also give credit to them a little bit, they did a real good job of clogging up the neutral zone so we had a really hard time once we gave up the lead like that of getting through the neutral zone to create enough pressure. Some of that credit goes to them but some of it we allowed it to deflate us too much.”
Did you like that your team had a 28-14 edge in shots?
“I just talked to come of our people that were upstairs; the one concern was we didn’t win enough one-on-one battles in the offensive zone, so we got to be a team that pays an extraordinarily hard price to score because we’re not the biggest team. That’s fine. We got really good players that I’ll take on our team any day but we got to be ultra competitive and I didn’t think the second half of the game we were ultra competitive enough. From a possession standpoint, we got a lot more time in their end than they had in our end. They had little time in our end but we got to pay a bigger price to score goals.”
Were the Sharks’ first two goals problems with sort outs in the defensive end?
“The first one it hit the boards, it hopped on Miller, so then it’s kind of like a quick turnover and it’s hard to recover from that. The second one was a little bit of a sort out there where one guy kind of lost his guy going around the net and we didn’t have enough recovery on that. The biggest thing on that is we got to find a way to score more goals because you’re going to have some of those issues. I think we’ve defended great, I think we’ve gotten great goaltending all year. We got to find a way to score more goals.”
Were you guys too fancy instead of shooting puck?
“I haven’t thought that until maybe the second half of tonight. I really didn’t think that in the games against Washington and Dallas. I thought we shot but just didn’t get pucks through enough. But I thought there was times tonight maybe we started to turn into where we were too cute. I don’t want a bunch of guys squeezing their sticks and shooting too early but we’re going to have to do a better job of knowing when we get opportunities we got to shoot the puck. And you got to make the other goalie makes saves.”
What did you think of the night Datsyuk had in his return?
“It’s what I expected. He did some good things. He didn’t have a training camp. We’re 15 games deep already. I think the expectations that he’s just going to hop on like he does at the end of the year … well, it takes anybody, even as good as he is, time to get going. I thought he played fine, I thought there were moments of greatness but I also think he’ll be a lot better five games into this than he is today.”
Can you talk about mixed up the lines like you did in the second and third periods?
“We just felt we were really starting to lose our speed so we tried to mix up our lines to give us a little more speed. I’m going to evaluate the game and decide what I’m going to do tomorrow.”
You had four shots, how did you feel?
Center - DET
Goals: 0 | Assists: 0 | Pts: 0
Shots: 4 | +/-: E
"I have good chances but I need to score with at least one. It would be good for me and for team. I not score. It's not the shots that matter, how many shots."
Conditioning-wise, did you feel good?
"Always when you come back the first game it's like everybody flying past you, you're just kind of passed a little bit. But it's common, every shift is better and better. But I got tired a little bit in the end."
The team has had trouble scoring, what do you think the biggest problem is?
"I see in a few games where they're playing and now, I think we need more shoot and follow rebound. I think we just sometimes keep the puck and we need to shoot any shot and keep it dangerous."
Did you like the scoring chances?
"I only remember my own. I like my own but I need to score. I not keep chance, keep it goal."
How much confidence do you take going into Saturday’s game in Boston?
"It's like every game, it's much better. Being more focused, more consistent, more keep pace with team. They don't want to wait me when I just finally come back in the offensive zone."
It must have felt good to be back, right?
"After I wait lots of time and lots of being outside of the game, it's fun to be in the locker room, it's fun to be with team and like, had to score. But next time I need to try, I need to score."
What was the biggest difference tonight?
Defense - DET
Goals: 0 | Assists: 3 | Pts: 3
Shots: 11 | +/-: -5
“I think that when we skate we’re a very efficient team. I thought tonight maybe we started a little slow but in the third period as we picked up our pace we started to play a little bit better. So we need to continue to do that tomorrow night and we’ll be fine.”
You doubled them in shots, how frustrating is it knowing that only two went in?
“A little bit. Their goalie played well. We did have some good second chances that were quality. I think Datsyuk had a couple and Abby had one. We’ve just got to make sure we bury those. That’s the difference in the game really.”
Positive that Pavel will only keep getting better?
“Absolutely. It was really good to have Pav out there. He just creates so much. It seems like he opens up the ice a lot. Definitely a blessing to have him back.”
What can you do to get more 5-on-5 scoring?
“Maybe just funnel a little bit more pucks to the net. Sometimes you get a lucky bounce right to somebody’s stick, or else it goes off a pad and in. I think we need a couple of those.”
The Sharks’ first goal, was is a structural breakdown?
“A little bit. The puck kind of popped and I think maybe we were focused a little too much on looking at the puck, including myself – especially myself. We’ve just got to make sure we’re grabbing guys in front. We work on it enough in practice. We should know.”
Are you surprised that this team is still struggling to score?
“Yeah. We got chances and I think that’s the main point, that we are getting chances. It’s not like we’re not creating and whatnot. They’re going to go in. They will. For sure.”
What did you think of the game?
Left Wing - DET
Goals: 4 | Assists: 11 | Pts: 15
Shots: 34 | +/-: -1
“I think we came out and played really good in the first. We spent some time in their end. In the middle of the second period they took over. Sometime in middle of second period they took over a little bit. Then they really played on their lead. Played real simple. Really was tough for us to get anything going. We couldn’t sustain any pressure in their zone.”
What did you think of the effort in the third-period comeback effort?
“We knew we still had a chance going into the third. Obviously it would have been nice to get that second goal earlier. But unfortunately we couldn’t get the third.”
What did you think of Datsyuk’s return?
“It’s great. It’s great to have him back. Obviously we’ve been missing him a lot here. It’s great to see him healthy and back playing.”
Do the Sharks need credit for their defense limiting your chances?
“They played really tight in front of him. When they got that two-goal lead they stacked up in front of the goalie. It was tough to get pucks through and tough to get into their end, just got to find a way to be a little crisper. Too many turnovers at the end the second, beginning of the third, and we couldn’t get anything going.”
How disappointing was the Sharks’ third goal?
“That’s how it goes sometimes. Obviously the third one was a bang-bang type of shot. There’s nothing you can do about that one. Obviously we have to create a little bit more than we did. We got almost 30 shots but a lot of them was not really good quality chances.”
It seemed that they didn't have a lot of chances but were able to score on them, what did you think?
Goalie - DET
GAA: 2.20 | Sv%: .922
“That first one can't go in. When the guys aren't scoring, that first one can't go in. Tonight's on me for them to battle out of the hole."
Overall, with Datsyuk back, did you like the balance?
"Yeah, I think so. We've grown and we love Pav so much. He hasn't played in a long time so it might take him a couple games to get used to the speed again. Even though he is Pavel Datsyuk, he is human. But still, liked what I saw out of him tonight. He was slick with his stick. He's only going to get better so that's only going to make us more dangerous."
Did you see the third goal? Did it deflect a couple of times?
"No. From what I saw on the big screen, it looked like it was a shot from Martin and Pavelski went and skated in front and got a stick on it."
Joe Pavelski always seems to hurt you guys, doesn't he?
"Yeah, I guess you guys would know more than I would. I don't know. Maybe he just seems to have our number right now."
Was there much said in the dressing room between periods?
"I think it was just getting on the inside. They did a good job of playing, collapsing five and playing tight around their net. Just get inside them and we skated. We did a lot of good things but definitely room for improvement out of all of us."
DetroitRedWings.com managing editor Bill Roose contrtributed to this report.