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Tortorella pre-game

Posted By On April 7, 2011 @ 5:23 pm In Hockey,New York Rangers,NHL | 30 Comments

John Tortorella:

(He was in a good mood, wanted to know if he finished in the top three in the voting for the Halligan Good Guy award for cooperation with the media, which was won by Callahan. Then he joked that he wanted to get nowhere near that (byfuglien) award).

On Gilroy playing the PP:

“Probably not. I have other people that I’d rather use there. You might see him play a little defense at times, but on the power play, as of right now, not in my mind. You never know what goes on, but not right now.”

On the challenge for him to make the move to forward:

“I don’t know, and to be honest with you, I’m not sure how much I’m going to use him there. I’m going to bounce people in and out of there in that spot. I think, we’ve gone over what he needs to do. It’s a bit of a challenge. He hasn’t played it a whole bunch, but we feel he can handle it. If he can give us a few shifts, plus have the flexibility to use him as a defenseman at certain times, we felt we wanted to go that way versus bringing someone else up.

“So I don’t think it’s a tremendous challenge. It’s a little bit of an adjustment as far as wall play. We’ve gone over some things as far as that’s concerned. And just play. Once you get it out of your end zone, we want him to play and be creative and see where we go from there.”

On the knowledge that they’ve succeeded without Callahan being  a positive:

“Well, we won. When Cally was out, we won. I’m not sure what our record was, but we won some hockey games without him. You move by it right away, and we’ve talked about it as a team. There’s no more conversation about it. We just need to find a way and continue to play our game and other guys will be slotted into different spots to take his ice time. And they need to accept the responsibility and get things done.”

On taking Callahan’s spot in front on the power play:

“Dubi will be there. He’ll probably move up … again, I’m not sure what my units are. He’ll be one. I may use Brian Boyle a little bit in those situations, depending on his play. There are people. There are people. Fedotenko’s willing to stand in front of the net. So there’ll be a number of different people as we get going and playing tonight and we’ll see what happens.”

On Drury skating again today:

“There’s no timetable on Dru. No.”

On Dubinsky taking so many key faceoffs lately:

“I’m not sure, I don’t have all the stats, but he’s been really good for a long time here. So, we’ve done it that way. Brian is in and out, more out lately, as far as faceoffs. So I’ve been using Dubi quite a bit. Vinny Prospal’s actually done a pretty good job on faceoffs on the power play. I think it’s feast or famine with Vinny. He either wins them clean or loses them clean. So it’s a situation, as situations come, I’m trying to get people out there. I’m hoping Brian … Brian is a guy that we’re hoping can help us there, as we get into these types of games, and maybe if we can extend our season, we’re going to need someone else to try to help us out there.”

On using Prospal or Stepan on draws when that line’s out.:

“Yeah, (Prospal) will probably take some. Step has taken some and has been better. Step has been better. I’m not using him much in our end zone, but has gotten some better results on his faceoffs. So they’ll talk about it; they’ll figure it out, and however they’re going … I try to leave it up to them as far as who they feel (comfortable) against taking faceoffs. They talk to one another. So Vinny will probably take a majority of them.”

On D-zone draws when a winger takes the faceoff, either by design or after the center is tossed:

“The coverage isn’t affected. You go through the situation, win or loss in that situation, and the centers and wingers understand that. So it’s not trying to switch off right away. We try to stay within the coverage or the breakout if we have control of the puck.”

On his way out, I asked him if Lundqvist would start in goal. First he couldn’t believe somebody would ask such a stupid question, then he figured it was a joke and he laughed and shook his head.


For details about this weekend’s Bonehead festivities in NYC, see the previous thread.

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