I asked him about what Fedotenko means to the team, for the column I’m writing:
“He is a guy that, he’s been good. He’s been good in the series. He does all the little things and he’s very underrated as far as his hitting, how stiff he is as a player. He does the little things on the boards. We’d like to see him score some more and that’s in him. But he’s very similar, for me on the bench, when I’m looking for someone because Cally isn’t there, he’s kind of turned into my Cally. I’m looking for him in all situations and he’s played very well.”
On coaches meeting with the director of officiating before each playoff game:
“I stay away from (the meeting). Glen does that. I’ve just got too many things going on in my mind. Glen handles all that stuff.
”(those meetings are about) points of emphasis, I think, of what’s going on in the series, this, that and the other thing. But Glen’s handling it.”
On Bruce Boudreau’s charge that the Rangers are targeting Mike Green’s head:
“Well, I guess, our mindset is just focusing on what we need to do, how we play, play the right way, and get ready for Game 4. That’s our main focus. We have confidence in the league, we have confidence in the officials, that they won’t be influenced by all the whining going on here right now. So, we’re staying away from it. We’re focused on what we need to do. And like I said, we have confidence in the league that this doesn’t affect the series. It’s a pretty good series, two pretty good teams going at it pretty hard.”
On the anxiety over one-goal games, and the two leads that evaporated in Game 3:
“We’ve handled ourselves well. We’ve been in a lot of one-goal games this year. It’s a different situation in the playoffs. But again, we had, especially in one game, we had a lot of obstacles to overcome as far as our mindset. And we’re just going to go about our business. That is our mindset. We’re not going to get into any type of convoluted thinking. We’ll worry about playing and handling the surges and the ups and downs of what goes on in games and we’ll try to find our way.”
On the physical play:
“That’s part of playing. That’s a big part of playoff hockey. But you have to be really careful that you don’t lose your emotions, you stay within it, play between the whistles, go about your business the right way.
“Two days … we got asked the question the other day, two days between games. I’m sure both teams are chomping on the bit. I know we are. We just want to play.”
On how Sean Avery’s play contributed to Mats Zuccarello’s demotion to Connecticut for the AHL playoffs:
“We’re pretty confident with our lineup here. And, again, you still have to shuffle around in your mind as far as developing players, too. They’re in the playoffs down there. To bag skate Zucc every day here is kind of counterproductive to him, where he could be playing in the American League playoffs. And that’s part of the process for him. He’s done some really good things for us here. But we have to find exactly what he is as we continue growing as a hockey club here. So this is good for him.
“And it is, it’s two-fold thing. It’s for him, for development, and we’re pretty comfortable with our lineup right now.”
On the new look on the club:
“Those silly moustaches?”
Are you not going to follow suit?
“No. no. I … what are you trying to talk about, that I’m gray? No, I’m not. I … no.”
On the decision to skate at MSG tomorrow instead of at Greenburgh—he was reminded that he did it in the 2009 playoffs, too, but didn’t remember:
“New York is a different animal from other places that we’ve coached in. It’s a dynamic that, I still have a lot to learn in what is best. But in playoffs, we’re not sequestering our players in the hotel. We’re trying to do the best for them. We’ve had meetings on that. But as far as game-day, three-quarters of the team is down there. We will have meetings on game day during playoffs, there will be an optional skate. So four or five guys from Westchester will be in the city tomorrow. That’s the way we’re going to go about it.”
On going with Stepan and Anisimov during the remaining 4-on-4 after Dubinsky’s go-ahead goal late in Game 3:
“Well, they weren’t playing that bad at that time. I thought with Artie—it has been a little bit of a struggle for both of them. I don’t think Step was bad at all during the game. I thought Artie came on as the game went on, made a couple of offensive plays around the net. I have faith in him, and honestly in the 4-on-4, it worried me as far as, I wanted to make sure we got through it without getting scored on, because I respect some of the people that they can throw out there. They’re two pretty good defensive players, and we came back with them. I just didn’t feel comfortable at that time putting anybody else out there. I felt they were our two best at that point in time. I had just finished Dubi and Feds.”
On what he wants his team to carry over from Game 3:
“Focus. Focus. I have full faith in the club that they’re not going to get involved in anything around us and just focus on the job at hand. And they’re focused in practice. As I said, they’ll be ready to play. Whether it comes into a win or a loss … there’s so many things that determine winning and losing, but I know these guys will be ready to play. That is the key. Stay focused on the job.”