Blue Notes

Steve Zipay takes you inside the locker room, home and on the road, with the New York Rangers, and also writes about the NHL, off and on the ice.

Transcripts of Therrien, Gionta, Plekanec interviews today

Michel Therrien, headc oach of the Montreal Canadiens,

Michel Therrien, headc oach of the Montreal Canadiens, speaks to the media during a press conference after Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Final. (Credit: Getty Images / Elsa)

From ASAP Sports/NHL:

BRIAN GIONTA
Q. Is there anything from 2010 that you guys can draw on coming back in the series?

BRIAN GIONTA:  Well, the guys that were here, you know, you remember the situation and you remember the feelings that you had.  At no point in that series did we feel we were out of it, and the same holds true now.  We believe in the team that’s in here, and we believe we can win this series.

Q. When you have a goalie who is young like Dustin, do you go out of your way to try and lift him up may more than usual?

BRIAN GIONTA:  No, no, no matter who it is.  A key loss like that, you’re going to try to support him, whether it’s Carey or it’s Dustin.  He’s played extremely well for us.  He gave us a chance to win last night, and some of the big saves he made were the reason why we were in that game still.

Q. When facing someone like Lundqvist, is there any tendency, anything at all that he shows that you guys feel like you didn’t exploit yesterday?

BRIAN GIONTA:  No, he’s like any goalie.  He’s great at making the first save, and you’ve got to get screens and tips and rebounds on him and make sure you get second and third opportunities.  That is how it is across the board with all the goalies nowadays.  It’s tough to beat them on that first shot.

TOMAS PLEKANEC
Q. In terms of energy, overall energy, looking at the two games in New York as a whole, did you guys have the energy level and the urgency that is required for the situation?

TOMAS PLEKANEC:  I definitely think so.  I think it’s more just we’ve got to start playing more with the confidence, making the right plays at the right time.  When there is a play, we’ve got to make it.  When there is no play we have to go for the puck.  Sometimes we didn’t make the right decision.

 Q. Do you remember when you were down 3-1 to Washington that year? How does it turn psychologically or was the confidence always there?

TOMAS PLEKANEC:  I think when your back’s against the wall, anything after that is playing kind of loose.  Just going out there every shift and going hard and trying to get, like I said, trying to do everything you can to keep the series going.

COACH THERRIEN
Q. Are you and the players encouraged to see Carey out on the ice, even in just a light capacity?  Even though you’re not expecting him to be back from this series?

COACH THERRIEN:  He’s not going to play, like I said before.  He’s not going to play in the series, you know.  It’s just part of the rehab, that’s all.  It’s a great sign.

Q. The Rangers have scored first in three of the games in this series and you were able to overcome that in Game 3.  But what is it about this year around the league, one goal, the opening goal seems to give such momentum to the team for the night?

COACH THERRIEN:  Yeah, prior series against Tampa Bay and the Bruins we were the team scoring the first goal and it gave us a lot of momentum and confidence.  Obviously, in this series, it doesn’t happen.  But we did not to try to change our game plan.  We want to score that first goal, and we know it’s important.  It gives confidence to teams, so we’ve got to be ready.
We’ve got to play hard right from the start and try to make sure we score that first goal.  But at the end of the day, it’s not the end of the world.  Because usually to win a hockey game, you need to get three goals to win games. Usually.  Yes, we’d like to score that first goal, but even if you score early and we get scored, there is still a lot of hockey to be played.

Q. With all the goings on in this series there is a portrayal that you and Alain have been at each other’s throats and mind games and whatnot.  There was some TV footage yesterday of when Alain was driving into the Garden and you guys had a little chat, and it looked like it was pretty amicable.  Can you just share at all what that was about?

COACH THERRIEN:  I saw him coming and I told him to go away because I didn’t want him to hit me and he laughed about it.  He thought it was funny.

Q. As a follow, what’s it going to be like down the road after this series when you two get together?

COACH THERRIEN:  You know what?  Like I said before the series, and what I said yesterday, I’ve got tons of respect for Alain Vigneault, but right now we’re competing for the same thing, and we want our team to participate in the Stanley Cup Final.  So he’s doing everything he can to prepare his team, and I’m trying to do the same thing.  It’s nothing personal.  It’s nothing personal because we both respect each other.  When the series will be over, it’s going to be over.

Q. When you have a tough loss like you did last night with a young goaltender in Dustin, how do you approach him?  Do you speak to him about it or how did you handle that?

COACH THERRIEN:  I let Stephane Waite deal with the goalie, so…

advertisement | advertise on newsday

NHL videos

Vote

What was the biggest issue in the Rangers' Stanley Cup loss to the Kings?

Offense Defense Power play Coaching Something else

@stevezipay

advertisement | advertise on newsday