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Sharks Head Coach Answers The Media

by San Jose Sharks Staff / San Jose Sharks
Q. I know it's early, fresh, but your thoughts on this, the sweep?

COACH McLELLAN: You got to give Chicago credit. They're a helluva team. They seemed very destined right now. They have a goaltender that's on fire. They're getting scoring not necessarily from their superstars, I mean that with all due respect to the Byfugliens, the Bollands, those type of players. They're doing the things they need to do to win. They're a helluva team.  They certainly deserved the series. I thought we played hard with them. We competed with them. You know, we battled. We were in every minute of every game, but we were the second-place team.

Q. Not that it would have been easy under any circumstances, but the fact you had a two-goal lead, kind of disappeared, make it even more painful?

COACH McLELLAN: A loss is a loss right now. Our year's over. We gave up a two-goal lead. We're not pleased about that. You know, a bit of a disputed goal, then a four-on-four goal.
But we still had our opportunities to crawl back in. It was a bit of a slow third period for us. Ended up taking the penalties, burned a lot of players out trying to kill them. It eventually caught up to us.

Q. You had just three people scoring in this series. Was it a case of just not enough help?

COACH McLELLAN: Well, I think my comment on Chicago probably answers that question. You need to have depth, scoring depth, to win, to have success. It's not always the superstars that have to get it done. There has to be some grunt work done by some of the other people. Great to see Logan score tonight.  Guys that have been there for us and went dry, you know, to get to that ultimate level where the Blackhawks are going now, you need those people.

Q. Dany Heatley hesitated when I asked him if he was a hundred percent. Now that it's over, can you confirm?

COACH McLELLAN: Kind of is probably a good answer. Dany Heatley had a very bad groin injury in the Colorado series. He really gutted it out. Over time he's got better. In my opinion, I don't think he's ever got back to where he needed to be skating-wise. I think it was evident.
You know, he's a pretty noble guy. He's going to tell you he's pretty close to being good, but he never really got back to where he needed to be.

Q. It may be too early, but does getting swept change the way you look at the overall season at all?

COACH McLELLAN: Well, I'll answer for myself. We've come a long way as an organization. We won the Presidents' Trophy last year. We went into a situation against Anaheim where we didn't play very well. You know, we held an evaluation of our team that was very intense and we scrutinized it very closely. A number of players were put on notice. We made a number of changes.  What we did was we fought through the season. We've come a long way. Six of our players on tonight's roster had played in this series before. Other than that, nobody else had experienced it. Only two were Sharks at the time. We've gained a lot of experience.
I think we can look at what the Blackhawks did last year and how they grew through losing. Sometimes it's part of the process. Jumbo now has been there. I looked at Jonathan Toews' statistics, I think he ended up with 13 points, they went out in this round. Now look at him, what he's got there, close to 30. He's been there, he's done it. Their team has been there and done it. They've learned through it. I'd like to think we could be that team.

Q. Your GM will have some decisions to make. Key free agents. You believe in this group as it is pretty much?

COACH McLELLAN: I definitely believe in this group. You know, there's going to be a lot of people sitting behind a computer and a typewriter writing their stories tomorrow. I know exactly how they're going to come out because that's what you guys do.
But when you're in between those walls, in those bricks, you know, we believe in that group. We have that experience now. You know, we've gone through that. Maybe we can expand on it.

Q. You referred to the first goal as a disputed goal. Did you still feel that way after seeing the video?

COACH McLELLAN: There's a rule that is in the league right now that if the referee has the intent to blow the whistle, it's dead. The problem with the rule, like a lot of 'em, is there's a lot of gray left in there. Nobody knows what the referee's thinking.  You know, I certainly respect the job that they do. Although his whistle was going towards his mouth, the intent wasn't there and we have to live with that. That's the way it goes.

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