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Game Report

Stanley Cup Final (Off Day Quotes): Detroit Head Coach Mike Babcock


Pavel looked pretty good today. Is he pretty close or what do you think?
I don’t know. What we’ll do is we’ll go for the optional skate in the morning and see how he responded today and see how he felt.            

I haven’t talked to him since he got off, and I haven’t talked to Pete. He was still out there well after I got off, so we’ll see how he is.

This might sound stupid, but do you feel you need him more now because you’ve lost a game in this series?
Well, no, I thought we needed him the day we lost him against Chicago. And I think we’ve needed him every game since. But I think just what I said earlier, guys have stepped up, done a real good job and given us an opportunity. Just like last night, they gave us a good opportunity, and we weren’t able to finish.

After a loss in these Playoffs, you guys have played some pretty good hockey. How have you done that? What happens after you lose a game?
Well, you know, I don’t know the answer to that. I think what we try to do is just like anything that’s a great reminder how hard it is and how determined you have to be. And the other thing that’s a lot of fun in the Playoffs, it’s a roller coaster ride. You feel great one day, and the next day you don’t feel that good. And it’s all based on winning and losing. 

You know, the big thing for us is no different than Game 3 was. It was a huge game. Game 4 now becomes a huge game. It’s the game we’re playing. 

It’s a big test for our team. We have to respond, we understand that. 

When we look at the game here today, our first scoring ?? we got a face?off play and Leino got a chance, but our first chance in the game came  with 12:39 left on the clock in the first. So that’s basically, you’ve gone 7 minutes without generating offense. And then we had a good second period and then again in the third period, and I could be wrong on that by a minute or something. But I think it was 12 minutes again.   So we played a real good 30 minutes in between, but we didn’t start like we’d like to, and we didn’t finish like we’d like to.  

With the skill and talent you have, the goaltender you have, you still must be disappointed with your penalty killing percentage. Can you just talk about that a little bit?
Well, it’s not even the percentage, it’s when you give them up. You know, that’s huge. Last night we needed a kill. Without any question, it was a 2?2 game. We needed the kill. I went through it today without emotion. The first power?play goal they got, I didn’t like the way the goal went in. But I hated the play, went half wall across and you can’t give that up.

Just to clarify, is Draper in or out, or are you not saying? 
I can tell you if you want. He’s in. I don’t know who is out.

Zetterberg was up over 24 minutes last night. Is that ideal for him or is it a little much? What is your thought?
I would have liked him not to be at that. I thought he was in a real good situation going into the third period. But we were also down there at the end, and we have a day off. So anything for me with him is 22, 23 doesn’t ?? I don’t want him to be 24. I think he was 24:11 though, wasn’t he? Okay. Who has the time sheet? I don’t know if the extra 20 seconds killed him. 24:19. After the game he asked Pete, how many minutes did I play? And Pete told him. And he said, gee it didn’t feel like that tonight. 

The other thing we’ve got to take into account is sometimes at home your guys are right on top of those key guys because you’ve been on them over the years to make sure they’re not wrong. And sometimes on the road you’re not. When you’re getting people and on off the ice like we were last night, I didn’t think we overplayed him.

No surprise that Draper is in.  He needs some fresh legs in the lineup because even Helm looked tired during last night’s 3rd period.