CUP FINAL OFF-DAY TRANSCRIPT: Alain Vigneault

50

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: Practice Day

Alain Vigneault
THE MODERATOR:  Questions for coach.

Q.  Obviously Dan’s pass did not lose the game last night.  When a guy makes a play like that that’s so out there at the end, what is the dynamic of how difficult it is when you have two days till you play another game?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  I haven’t talked to him yet personally.  I do know a couple of my assistants have.  I do know that Dan’s got great teammates.  I’m sure that they’ve all talked to him.
It was a bounce.  It was a bounce that unfortunately didn’t work out.  He couldn’t put the handle on it.  Stuff like that happens.  You got to turn the page and move on.

Q.  Do you feel you let one get away as a team on this one?  And what sort of adjustments do you have to make to get a win?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  Well, I’m in the process at this time of watching the game.  I haven’t watched the whole game yet.  I’ve watched parts of it.
One thing that’s real evident to me, and it should be to our whole group, is we’re not going to beat this team if we do not all bring our A game.  It is that strong of an opponent that we’re playing against.
We had Hank that brought his A game last night.  We had a couple guys.  I don’t want to name who I think brought their A game.  But our B game won’t do it.  We’re not going to win if we bring our B game to the table.
They’re one of the best teams I’ve seen in a long time.  Areas to exploit, they don’t jump out at you.  We’re going to have to be better than we were.

Q.  What changed over the course of the game, especially from the first period leading to the third period?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  Again, like I said last night after the game, I thought our first 40 was good.  Both teams were battling real hard.  I’m not quite sure yet what happened in the third.  I haven’t sat down with our players yet to discuss it.
But obviously our game in the third wasn’t good enough.  They had a real strong push.  We’re going to have to be a lot better than we were.

Q.  Not asking your lineup, but if John Moore does come back in, what element would he bring?  Have you missed him in the lineup?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  Well, Johnny’s played some good hockey for us.  He skates with the puck well.  He’s left?handed D.  Think it’s easier to go D to D when you have right? and left?handers Rafa has done a good job for us also.  Johnny has been one of our consistent six defensemen that we’ve rolled all year.
If we do go that way, I’m sure he’s going to be ready for it and he’s going to look forward to the opportunity.

Q.  Saying they’re one of the best teams you’ve seen in a long time, did your opinion change of the Kings last night?  Are they better than you had originally thought?  Are they better than the versions you coached against when you were in Vancouver?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  They were a good team in the years past.  They’re a real good team now.
It’s obvious they’ve got more experience.  They play their game plan to a T and they don’t deviate in any shape, way or form, so that makes it real challenging for the opposition.

Q.  When you say something like that, that everybody has to bring their A game, is that the message to your team?  Is that a challenge to them?  If so, how do you think they’ll respond?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  It’s exactly what we talked about prior to going into the series.  This is something we were aware of.  It’s something we discussed, how good the opponent was.  That’s a challenge.
You know, at this time of the year to win, you got to bring your A game.  That’s each and every player.
When we played Game 6 against Montréal, each and every player brought his A game.  It’s not an easy thing to do.  But against this opponent, I do believe our expectations are to win, got to find a way to do it.

Q.  What about this team, seeing them in person in Game1, watching on film, jumped out at you in terms of realizing this is what these guys are?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  Nothing jumped out at me in the sense that everything that I expected, everything that we had talked to our players about, about what to expect, they did it down to a T.  They keep doing it.  They stay with it.  They don’t deviate.
It’s tough to exploit any areas because they’re that good.

Q.  What is the most challenging part?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  To tell you the truth, I can’t name one.  They can play a fast game.  They can be physical when the opportunity is there.  They’re a good team.
But saying that, I believe in looking back at it, for 40 minutes we went head to head with them.  When they had a push, we had one guy that had a big push.  Our goaltender permitted us to stay in that game.  We were one shot away.
So I think our group can be better.

Q.  Where would you rate the physicality of the three teams that you beat to get here compared to what you saw last night?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  The three teams we met before were different.  Philly was a physical team.  They played on the edge.
Pittsburgh played more of a skill game.  But they also had quite a few players that played on the edge.
Montréal was, you know, a real structured team.
So they were three different opponents.
This one here is structured.  They’ve got skill.  They’re physical.  Makes it a pretty big challenge.

Q.  A lot of us probably think that last night’s game was a game you had to win because you would be catching them when fatigue might be in their legs still.  How different is that from how you guys feel?  Is that a message you can’t afford for your team to think?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  Well, I mean, we went into last night’s game focused on that game.  Obviously our expectations were to win it.  We didn’t do it.
You guys can analyze why we didn’t do it, if that was our game to win.
We’re going to turn the page.  Obviously we’re going to make a couple of adjustments that we need to make.  We’re going to focus on the next game and give it our best shot.

Q.  To your trained eye, how do you tell when somebody has their A game?  Is it their effort?  Their concentration?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  I would say it’s a combination of compete level, execution, and sticking to the plan.  When your players are executing, and they won’t be perfect, you can’t be perfect all the time, but you can put yourselves in situations that when you’re not perfect, you can still make a play.
Compete level, all the one?on?one battles, and there are tons that you can see there, when you see that your guys are there, you know they’ve got their A game.  When it’s not there, B is not going to cut it against this team.

Q.  With Nash, what is it going to take to get this guy going and could potentially putting him on a power play help get him ignited?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  Not sure if you followed our series very closely, but Rick has been playing some real good hockey.  He’s competing.  He’s using his size.  He’s done some great defensive plays for us.  He’s been a big part of why we are where we are and why we have a chance to compete for the Cup.
He’s getting some looks on our team.  Throughout the playoffs, he is the one that is on the most positive as far as scoring chances for and against.  He’s getting some looks.  You got to believe that sooner or later they’re going to go in more consistently.  But they did go in against Montréal.

Q.  You always hear when coaches analyze a game, We don’t want to turn this into a track meet.  Given the speed advantage that your team has, would this be a case where you actually would want to turn it into a track meet?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  Well, we need to play to our strengths.  Let me put it another way.
We need to find a way to play to our strengths.  They’re probably the best opponent we’ve met.  For us to win, we’re going to have to find a way to play to our strengths.  Speed is definitely one of them.

Q.  You played Ryan McDonagh nearly half the game last night.  What is it about his game that you have that much faith in him to show him that much time in a game?
COACH VIGNEAULT:  His stamina is phenomenal.  It just seems that throughout this playoffs, he’s been getting better.  Anybody that followed us knows that during the Philly and Pittsburgh series he was trying to get his legs and trying to get them going.  He’s got them going now.
He just seems to be able to play tons and play well defensively and offensively.  He can be physical when the opportunity is there.  When he sees and sniffs that there’s a possibility offensively, he goes.
He’s our best player as far as our defensive group right now, and we need him to continue to play how he is.
Thanks, guys.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

Photo by Getty Images.

 

About Author

50 Comments

  1. I actually turned to Sonny Boy after Nash’s 3rd shift last night and said….”the big dope looks like he came to play. Do you think they told him LA is a suburb of Columbus?”

  2. Would love to know how somebody can suggest a team is intimidated and/or demoralized from the TV screen. I didn’t see even a shred of evidence that either is the case.

  3. eddie eddie eddie on

    papa – on his first shift, Nash fanned on his shot…a fortelling of what was to come

    robbie – give up? or are you hungry for more?

  4. Doodie Machetto on

    Boyle went 12-24-36 with one of the most potent offenses in the league.

    I’m going to go ahead and he does less on the tire fires, if he even is dumb enough to sign there. Maybe he can sign there and then hope to be dealt at the deadline to a contender.

  5. eddie eddie eddie on

    could someone please confirm that if the entire population is comprised of 22, 20, 15, and 7, that the mean is 16 and the SD is 6.6

    i feel like I’m taking crazy pills

  6. A stat to look forward to on Saturday.

    Wes McCauley 4 will work game. The kings have won there last 12 home games with him working in LA.

  7. Later all…..seriously don’t have it my head to read any negative vibin….I’m not even reading about it anywhere, but here….TA for now!

  8. Admiral Akbar on

    That’s right – gotta play that speed game and back LA up a bit.

    Would like to see some scoring off the forecheck too.

  9. eddie eddie eddie on

    eric – Stats are misleading and confusing…ask robbie :)……the rangers had won every opener this playoff run and lost last night…..Wes McCauley will bring the Rangers luck in game 2.

  10. Rob in Beantown on

    Is “standard deviation” one of those oxymorons, like jumbo shrimp?

  11. Admiral Akbar on

    Tire Fires fans buying up LA Kings jerseys already…

    Trolls, all of them.

  12. Doodie Machetto on

    Admiral, the irony there is still nobody is buying the Tire Fire jerseys.

  13. eddie eddie eddie on

    Rob – not sure about the oxy part, but moron seems apt to some :)

  14. Admiral Akbar on

    Doodie

    That’s an impressive observation. Suddenly there are more Kings fans around than Tire Fires and Derbils. Much more important for the Tire Fires fans to see Rangers (aka “Rags”) lose than the Tire Fires win.

    Keep hoarding those draft picks and elder defensemen, Tire Fires, that’ll fix that playoff series winning drought!

  15. eddie eddie eddie on

    It’s not that the Islanders were a bad team, it’s just all the rest of the teams were a lot better….

  16. Hags has been flying. I didn’t realize he was the guy who broke up that wrap around in the final seconds. That was after he had the breakaway chance the other way.

    Flying.

  17. Will the Rangers bring in Calle Andersson to play over Dan Girardi because Girardi gave up the goal that made the Rangers lose???

  18. Za'rat (TheOtherGuysGreed) Jones on

    Excuse me people! I wasn’t aware that the NHL awarded the Kings 3 wins for last nights game. I was told it was ONE ROAD GAME. Did something change? Are we down 3.1/2 to 0?

    POZY!! Keep it pozy! They tried hard and lost. Big deal. They’ll win the next two I promise!

  19. Matty"DidYouKNowDominicMooreWentToHarvard??"Boy on

    Anyone hear Boomer said this am that Stastny wants to come here and Sather wants him?? Boomer seems to get good inside info.

  20. Doodie Machetto on

    I missed that, but Boomer is exceedingly correct on these issues. If that’s the case, it’s a definite buy out for Richards to afford him.

    However, I don’t know how the two sides ever would have been in contact with each other at this point without some back channel shenanigans.

  21. Garth Brooks is doing a hell of a job over there. Can’t believe he still has a job.

    Ray Shero is out of a job, and Jon Snow still has his. Amazing! If Wang had any brains, he’d fire Snow and reach out to Shero.

  22. I am the most physical, skilled and structured poster on this blog. You guys better bring YOUR A-games on Saturday night. And I don’t wanna see Carp hooking up with Lindsay Lohan again

  23. eddie eddie eddie on

    Carp’s boss…give him a raise….the dude is absolutely the reason for the season :)

  24. Carp holed up in a Compton motel…at least put him somewhere without gunfire

  25. ThisYearsModel on

    I have to agree with CARP–there is no sign of a team that is demoralized or intimidated. They have their teammates’ back (Girardi) and know they were very close to getting the win. This is a good thing. Game 2 is also a tossup. They know they can play with the Kings.

  26. I missed most of the day. Someone said the team was demoralized and intimidated, I gather? LMGO, that’s exactly why they are in SCF.

  27. Doodie Machetto on

    So then why were you calling him a two bit, no talent, hack clown who is a dog’s breakfast of a person and could be easily replaced by the Cookie Monster?

  28. https://ca.sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nhl-puck-daddy/ryan-mcdonagh–the-other-amazing-super-awesome-young-defenseman-in-stanley-cup-final-220058092.html

    Scott Gomez! LOL!

    Hey, does “DOOM AND GLOOM” Eric use the handle, “Eric from Plainview” when calling sports talk radio?

    I heard a guy named Eric from plainview call ESPN today, after the call was over I was sure the Rangers were going to lose and almost wanted to commit suicide! ;-) I figured it has to be the same king of doom who posts here.

  29. I saw the Pacific today at the Rangers hotel. Then back to the mean streets near LAX. But, hey, they have a McDonald’s here, just like back home!

  30. Anybody know how Greene got cut last night? I missed it but I don’t feel bad since so did NBC-they showed him so often I thought maybe it was a special effect. Agree with AV that McD can play 30 inutes- how many minutes can Girardi play?

  31. Robby Bonfire on

    Hey, Carp –

    If I recall correctly, a recap I saw mentioned that the Rangers were out-shot 15-3, in the third period. That the RANGERS, not the Kings, became gassed, to go with being intimidated, I maintain, is just NOT a good portent for their chances.
    Also, the hits recorded in the game broke down 43-27 for LA.

    So Carp, these bad guys in the black uniforms, are hitting and checking our mid-sized and small-sized players, are killing us in the shots on goal department, and all this coming when the Rangers figured to be sharper, coming in, same as they were at the outset of the in Montreal series.

    Your being in the building Carp, is great, I am happy for you, unless the press box at that arena is up there in pigeon heaven. I had a lesser-dimensional, but nevertheless damn good close-up perspective, watching the game on the enormous screen at Turning Stone Casino. Our respective vantage points for seeing this game, however good or poor, do not negate the facts and the numbers I have cited, above.

    Look, Carp, I have truly loved this team since the age of 13 when I saw my first game in person at the old MSG. I want them to win almost as much as the players want to win for themselves. But, I fear, the handwriting is on the wall for us, this time around. I am proud of them, win or lose, and stuck with all Ranger teams over the years, even those that missed the playoffs.

    If they win I will be elated, not a bit embarrassed that I handicapped this series from all the information at my disposal, and not from my “heart,” which always leans over backwards in their direction.

  32. “Eric
    Yev

    That was me

    June 5th, 2014 at 6:39 PM”

    Eric, the hosts TRIED to bring you out of your “DOOM AND GLOOM” mode. You should listen to them.. Nice job though, you sounded good.

Leave A Reply