The Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank has scheduled an emergency drive-up food distribution event at PPG Paints Arena.Coronavirus In Pittsburgh: Emergency Drive-Up Food Distribution Event Scheduled At PPG Paints Arena This Friday — CBS Pittsburgh
Pirates pitcher Jameson Taillon, who underwent Tommy John surgery last year, won’t pitch in 2020 even if the season runs late into the year.Jameson Taillon won’t pitch this year — HardballTalk | NBC Sports
HEAD COACH SHELDON KEEFE
On what he liked about the team’s performance tonight vs. the previous two games:
I think we’ve talked about it before. We’ve shown at different times that this is a group with a lot of character and a lot of pride, and we showed that today with how we responded.
On if the performance tonight started with success in the faceoff circle:
Yeah, for sure, those guys had strong nights. I think it’s just a sign of how engaged we were in the game. I would say that was where the game begins in a lot of cases. Guys were hard on the puck in all areas of the game.
On Muzzin’s performance tonight:
Just complete. He battled, he was competitive, he shot one into the net, found a way to get a couple of assists. Just all over the game. He was a real leader for us back there.
On Kerfoot’s role in kickstarting the third line tonight:
Yeah, I think it really helps us. That line has really been struggling for us to find an identity and to find some consistency. It’s tough for us because I thought Kerf was doing an excellent job with [Tavares] and [Nylander] and playing well there. Just talking we said the acquisition of Malgin gives us an opportunity to give him a look with those guys. I just thought that Alex could bring something back to that line. We wanted to give him a chance to be a centre and get that line going. The wingers, Engvall and Kappy, are two guys we think have more to give us. That happened today.
On Andersen’s performance on a late first period penalty kill:
Yeah, he was excellent. He was perfect, he keeps it out of the net. He battled, he looked solid there. It was just a really good sign for our team. He made saves on the pucks that they were throwing around the net, but there was also a lot of loose ones hanging out there. Our guys collapsed real hard on the loose pucks to maybe not necessarily get it out like we would have liked, but at least kept away from our net and allowed us to settle the game. I thought that penalty kill was a really important time in the game, obviously it didn’t crack. It was a good chance for our penalty kill, which had been outstanding for us. I think the 12 games or so in the month leading up to the game in Pittsburgh we had the number one penalty kill in the NHL. So the penalty kill has been really strong for us and today was a chance for us to bring it right back.
On Kapanen’s impact on the game tonight:
That’s what he’s capable of doing. That’s the impact that he has on our team. So just really great to see that. It gives us consistency all throughout our lineup.
On the challenge of trying to maximize the team’s performance after the last two games:
This season is going very different; different things. It’s going to require different things from me, it’s going to require different things from our players. We didn’t like how the last little bit has gone. I was excited about the opportunity to get to work yesterday and put in the work and respond. You’re playing against the same team, it has a playoff feel to it when you take a beatdown in the first game, you have a chance to regroup and make a plan and push your team, challenge the team, motivate your team. That’s the best part of this game. I was excited about it; I think our players were too and it showed tonight.
On if there were any keys to getting the right response from the team after Tuesday:
I think there was a lot said, a lot done and all that kind of stuff, but a part of it too is you just don’t like to get embarrassed. Our guys have a lot of pride in themselves, a lot of pride in the jersey and the organization. So, we could have said or done nothing, and we might have gotten this type of response. We’ll never really know. Regardless of the route, we like that we got the response, we like the outcome, we love the result. Get the shutout and didn’t give up much against a very good team. I thought we controlled play for good chunks of time against a very good team. A lot of really good healthy signs here so we’ll enjoy it.
FREDERIK ANDERSEN (24 SAVES)
On the effort from the team’s blueliners tonight:
It was great. I think we responded the way we wanted to. I think the guys played really good. Muzz especially I thought was unbelievable today. Obviously, a great goal and amazing break out pass for Kappy’s goal, I think it was. Overall, a really good effort by the guys.
On the team scoring first and building its lead:
I think it goes without saying it’s better to score than give anything up. I thought we did a good job.
On if the team defended differently late to shut down Pittsburgh’s attack:
No, I thought we just stuck with our game for the most part of the game. We played a complete effort. That was a great response by everyone, I think, the way we want to be like.
KASPERI KAPANEN (1 GOAL)
On playing with emotion tonight:
I think the whole team showed a lot of emotion tonight, not just me in particular. You know, that’s the outcome when we play like that, we play with emotion and we stick to the structure and play the Maple Leaf way. That’s what happens and it was a good game throughout.
On his fight:
Stuff happens on the ice. I think Sandin got hit there and if it wasn’t me out there, I’m sure someone else would have stood up and defended one another. He came over and it just happened.
ALEX KERFOOT (1 ASSIST)
On Kapanen dropping the gloves:
It shows emotion, that’s what we were looking for. We wanted kind of a little more bite to our group. He’s a fiery guy at times and he had a great game tonight. I thought he was all over the forecheck, he was physical all night. When you see a guy like him drop the gloves, everyone on the bench gets a boost from that.
On if it’s frustrating why the team can’t have this effort more consistently:
I don’t think frustrating is the right word. I think maybe it’s disappointing the effort we’ve had a times this year but whether you’re a team who wins games or can’t win games, every team in this league can win games so it’s not a matter of we’re some upper echelon team that on certain nights can win games — I think that there’s a lot of teams in this league that when they’re playing well can win games. We’ve just got to find that energy, that bite, that jam that we had tonight and be able to bring that on a consistent basis.
DENIS MALGIN (FIRST GAME AS A MAPLE LEAF)
On playing his first game as a Maple Leaf:
I was trying to do my best you know, I felt good.
On playing with Tavares and Nylander:
It’s a great opportunity for me and now I’m just going to build off it.
On what being traded felt like:
Actually I don’t think so much, so I just took it and I was happy to be here.
WILLIAM NYLANDER (1 GOAL)
On tonight’s win:
I think it was a solid team game. I think this is what we needed. We had two terrible games, so to come back this is a good start, but we’ve just got to stick with this kind of game and keep playing like this and we’ll be good.
On what led to this effort after two straight losses:
Getting ready for the game, it’s just think that we haven’t been practicing so much and yesterday was a battle practice so we got into that kind of mode again. I think that was a good practice for us just to refresh in those kinds of areas of the game, which needed to improve.
JOHN TAVARES (2 ASSISTS)
On what he liked from the team tonight:
I think the intensity of the group, the way we started. It was a tight hockey game and we just stuck with it, got our opportunities, capitalized and didn’t let up in their end, I think that’s key for us. Good win, but obviously we’ve got to turn the page and get ready for Saturday. Lots of big hockey games coming up.
On the team’s success in the faceoff circle:
Yeah, we got a couple [goals] off them, so you just try to be as well prepared for those situations and those scenarios and take advantage of them when you can. Great shot by Muzz on the first one and then anytime you get a 5-on-3 and you’re able to win it clean, you’re able to get a good look right off of it. So good play [Matthews], great shot by Will. Just good areas to be sharp in and we generate a lot just everyone competing, hard work and fighting for their space and that led to open ice and good looks and following up on second opportunities.
PITTSBURGH PENGUINS (37-16-6 – 80 Points) vs.
TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS (32-22-8 – 72 Points)
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 20, 2020
ON THE SCORESHEET
- Jake Muzzin put the Maple Leafs on the board at 7:45 of the second period and later had the secondary assist on Kasperi Kapanen’s second period goal and the secondary assist on Zach Hyman’s third period goal. Muzzin has points (2-4-6) in four consecutive games. With three points tonight, Muzzin ties his career-high for points in a game (3 – 8x).
- William Nylander scored the second Toronto goal of the night on the power play at 10:01 of the second period. Nylander has points (1-1-2) in two consecutive games. He has seven points (3-4-7) in nine games played during the month of February. Ten of his 27 goals have come against Metropolitan Division opposition.
- Kasperi Kapanen scored the third Maple Leafs goal of the game at 13:04 of the second period. He has scored six of his 12 goals in 18 games against Metropolitan Division teams. He ranks fifth among Maple Leafs in even-strength goals (10).
- Zach Hyman scored the fourth Toronto goal of the night at 3:56 of the third period. Hyman has eight points (5-3-8) over his last eight games played. He has 18 points (9 goals, 9 assists) in 19 games on home ice this season.
- Justin Holl registered the primary assist on Muzzin’s second period goal. He has recorded seven (1 goal, 6 assists) of his 16 points against Metropolitan Division teams.
- John Tavares had the secondary assist on Muzzin’s second period goal and later had the secondary assist on Nylander’s second period goal. Tonight’s game is his fifth multi-assist and 16th multi-point game of the season. In 15 games against Metropolitan Division teams this season, he has recorded 19 points (6 goals, 13 assists). He has reached the 30-assist mark for the 10th time in his career.
- Auston Matthews recorded the primary assist on Nylander’s second period goal. Matthews has points (1-1-2) in two consecutive games. He has 13 points (7-6-3) in 11 games during the month of February. In 31 games on home ice this season, he has recorded 47 points (30 goals, 17 assists).
- Alex Kerfoot registered the primary assist on Kapanen’s second period goal. Kerfoot has five assists in 11 games during the month of February. He ranks seventh among Maple Leafs skaters in primary assists (11).
- Mitch Marner had the primary assist on Hyman’s third period goal. Marner has four points (1-3-4) over his last five games played. He has registered 33 of his 46 assists on home ice this season. He ranks ninth among NHL skaters in primary assists with 29.
- Frederik Andersen stopped 24 shots to earn his 25th win of 2019-20. He is the first Maple Leaf goaltender to earn a shutout against Pittsburgh on home ice since February 1, 2012 (1-0, James Reimer).
SHOTS ON GOAL (5-on-5 in brackets)
|PITTSBURGH||14 (8)||8 (8)||2 (2)||–||24 (18)|
|TORONTO||10 (10)||10 (8)||10 (9)||–||30 (27)|
SHOT ATTEMPTS (5-on-5 in brackets)
|PITTSBURGH||24 (18)||13 (13)||20 (19)||–||57 (50)|
|TORONTO||20 (19)||26 (22)||18 (17)||–||64 (58)|
NO PLACE LIKE HOME
|Record at Home||16-8-7 (31 Games)|
|All-Time Record vs. Pittsburgh||84-80-17-7 (188 Games)|
|All-Time Record vs. Pittsburgh at Home||47-32-11-3 (93 Games)|
|Record vs. Eastern Conference||17-14-6 (37 Games)|
|Record vs. Metropolitan Division||8-6-4 (18 Games)|
MAPLE LEAFS LEADERS
|Shot Attempts||10 (Tavares)|
|Faceoff Wins||15 (Tavares)|
|Faceoff Win Percentage||100% (Hyman, Spezza – 1 won, 0 lost)|
|Blocked Shots||4 (Muzzin)|
|Takeaways||1 (Kapanen, Kerfoot, Malgin)|
|Power Play TOI||3:12 (Matthews)|
|Shorthanded TOI||1:49 (Holl, Muzzin)|
|Shifts||24 (Five players tied)|
|5-on-5 Shot Attempt Percentage||75.0% (Engvall, Kerfoot – 12 for, 4 against)|
|Tied after 1||14-7-4|
|Lead after 2||23-2-2|
|Score one power play goal||10-8-4|
|Do not allow a power play goal||18-8-4|
- The Maple Leafs went 1-for-1 on the penalty kill and 1-for-3 on the power play tonight.
- Toronto’s line of Kyle Clifford, Frederik Gauthier and Jason Spezza started 16.7 percent of their 5-on-5 shifts in the offensive zone, which was the lowest mark among Maple Leafs.
- Denis Malgin skated in his first game as a Maple Leaf.
- Justin Holl was on the ice for a team-high 26 Toronto shot attempts-for at 5-on-5 tonight. Holl had a 5-on-5 shot attempt percentage of 59.1 percent (26 for, 18 against).
- John Tavares was 10-for-13 (77%) in the faceoff circle when taking offensive zone draws.
- Saturday, February 22, 7:00 p.m. vs. Carolina Hurricanes (Sportsnet, FAN 590)
- Tuesday, February 25, 7:00 p.m. at Tampa Bay Lightning (Sportsnet Ontario, TSN 1050)
- Thursday, February 27, 7:00 p.m. at Florida Panthers (TSN4, FAN 590)
- Saturday, February 29, 7:00 p.m. vs. Vancouver Canucks (Sportsnet, TSN 1050)
- Tuesday, March 3, 10:30 p.m. at San Jose Sharks (Sportsnet Ontario, FAN 590)
PITTSBURGH PENGUINS (37-15-6 – 80 Points) vs.
TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS (31-22-8 – 70 Points)
FEBRUARY 20, 2020 ▪ 7:00 PM EST
SCOTIABANK ARENA (TORONTO, ON) ▪
TV: TSN4 ▪ RADIO: TSN 1050
MAPLE LEAFS HISTORY versus PITTSBURGH
|ALL-TIME RECORD:||83-80-17-7 (187 Games)|
|ALL-TIME AT HOME:||46-32-11-3 (92 Games)|
MAPLE LEAFS CAREER LEADERS versus PITTSBURGH
|GAMES PLAYED:||John Tavares (48), Jason Spezza (47), Cody Ceci (19), Morgan Rielly (19)|
|GOALS:||Jason Spezza (19), John Tavares (11), Tyson Barrie (4)|
|ASSISTS:||Jason Spezza (33), John Tavares (22), Mitch Marner (9)|
|POINTS:||Jason Spezza (52), John Tavares (33), Jake Muzzin (11)|
|PENALTY MINUTES:||Jason Spezza (31), John Tavares (12), Kyle Clifford (6), Martin Marincin (6)|
MAPLE LEAFS – PENGUINS TEAM STATS
|GOALS FOR (Rank):||212 (2nd)||193 (t-8th)|
|GOALS AGAINST (Rank):||200 (29th)||154 (4th)|
|POWER PLAY [%] (Rank):||40/165 [24.2%] (4th)||37/169 [21.9%] (8th)|
|PENALTY KILL [%] (Rank):||131/171 [76.6%] (25th)||131/158 [82.9%] (6th)|
|SHOTS (Rank):||2034 (3rd)||1848 (19th)|
|5-on-5 SHOT ATTEMPTS FOR (Rank):||3064 (2nd)||2539 (25th)|
|5-on-5 SHOT ATTEMPT % (Rank):||52.3% (t-5th)||50.6% (12th)|
|FACEOFF % (Rank):||52.8% (3rd)||48.4% (t-27th)|
MAPLE LEAFS – PENGUINS NOTES
|First Matchup between Clubs:||December 13, 1967 (Pittsburgh 2, Toronto 1)|
|All-Time Record:||83-80-17-7 (187 Games)|
|All-Time Record at Home:||46-32-11-3 (92 Games)|
|All-Time Record on the Road:||37-48-6-4 (95 Games)|
|Last Win vs. Opponent at Home:||February 2, 2019 (Toronto 3, Pittsburgh 2)|
MAPLE LEAFS MILESTONES vs. PENGUINS
|Kyle Clifford||First goal as a Maple Leaf (February 18, 2020 at Pittsburgh)|
|Kasperi Kapanen||Selected by Pittsburgh in the first round (22nd overall) of the 2014 NHL Draft.|
First NHL goal (April 8, 2017 vs. Pittsburgh)
|Jake Muzzin||Selected by Pittsburgh in the fifth round (141st overall) of the 2007 NHL Draft.|
|Morgan Rielly||First NHL Goal (December 16, 2013 at Pittsburgh)|
|John Tavares||First NHL game (October 3, 2009 (NYI) at Pittsburgh)|
First NHL goal (October 3, 2009 (NYI) at Pittsburgh)
First NHL point (October 3, 2009 (NYI) at Pittsburgh)
MAPLE LEAFS LEADERS
|POWER PLAY POINTS||22 (Matthews)|
|SHORTHANDED POINTS||2 (Engvall, Kapanen)|
|FACEOFF WIN%||57.3% (Gauthier)|
|5-on-5 SHOT ATTEMPT %||55.2% (Nylander)|
|BLOCKED SHOTS||100 (Muzzin)|
|TOI PER GAME||24:15 (Rielly)|
|PP TOI PER GAME||3:05 (Marner)|
|SH TOI PER GAME||2:50 (Ceci)|
MAPLE LEAFS SNAPSHOTS
|Faceoffs||– The Maple Leafs rank third among NHL teams in faceoff win percentage (52.8%) and are tied for third among NHL teams in offensive zone faceoff win percentage (53.7%).|
|Goals by Period||– Toronto ranks third in the NHL in goals scored in the second period (77) and fifth in the NHL in goals scored in the third period (72).|
|When Leading||– The Maple Leafs are 15-2-1 when leading after a period, which is the fifth-highest win percentage (.833) when leading through 20 minutes.|
|Power Play||– The Maple Leafs are the lone NHL team to score at least 40 power play goals with fewer than 170 power play opportunities.|
|Penalty Kill||– Toronto has been shorthanded 171 times this season, which is tied for the eighth-fewest times shorthanded in the NHL.|
|Scoring First||– Toronto has a .778 win percentage when scoring first, which is tied for sixth in the NHL.|
MAPLE LEAFS PLAYER NOTES
|Frederik Andersen||– Tied for fourth among NHL goaltenders in wins (24).- Ranks fifth in the NHL in saves (1,232).- Has a save percentage of .915 in 17 games played on one day rest.|
|Tyson Barrie||– Has five multi-assist games, which is tied for 14th-most among NHL defencemen.- Tied for 12th among NHL defencemen in multi-point games (9).|
– Averages 14.71 shot attempts per game at 5-on-5, which is the fourth-highest average among NHL defencemen who have played in at least 50 games.
|Jack Campbell||– Has a 3-0-1 record with a .919 save percentage and a 2.40 goals-against average since being acquired by the Maple Leafs.|
|Kyle Clifford||– Recorded his first goal as a Maple Leaf on February 16 at Buffalo.- Tied for sixth among NHL left wingers who have appeared in 50 games in 5-on-5 shot attempt percentage (54.7%).|
– Averages 15.04 shot attempts per 60 minutes of ice time, which ranks 18th among NHL forwards.
|Pierre Engvall||– Has scored four of his seven goals in nine games against Metropolitan Division opposition.- Has played 32.7 percent of Toronto’s shorthanded ice time since joining the team, which is the second-highest shorthanded time on ice percentage among the League’s rookie forwards who have appeared in at least 30 games.- Has an on-ice goals-for percentage of 53.3 percent at 5-on-5, which is the eighth highest among NHL rookie forwards who have appeared in 30 games.|
|Justin Holl||– Ranks second in 5-on-5 shot attempt percentage (52.2%) among NHL defencemen who have started less than 45 percent of their 5-on-5 shifts in the offensive zone (43.6%).- Has the highest unblocked shot attempt percentage at 5-on-5 (52.6%) among NHL defencemen to have started fewer than 45 percent (43.6%) of their shifts in the offensive zone.- Has recorded six (1-5-6) of his 15 points in 17 games against Metropolitan Division teams.|
|Zach Hyman||– Third among Toronto skaters and tied for 27th among NHLers in points since January 1 (9-9-18; 20 GP).- Ranks fifth among Maple Leafs skaters in points per game (0.80).- Fourth among Toronto skaters in even-strength time on ice per game (15:58).|
|Kasperi Kapanen||– Has drawn 14 penalties this season and taken five, which gives him the highest net penalties among Toronto skaters (+9) and ranks tied for 26th among NHL forwards.- Ranks second among Maple Leafs and 13th among NHL right wingers who have appeared in 50 games in assists per 60 minutes of ice time (1.20) at 5-on-5.|
|Alex Kerfoot||– Ranks second among Toronto skaters who have appeared in 40 games in assists per 60 minutes of ice time (1.23) at 5-on-5.- Tied for eighth among Maple Leafs in even-strength points (7-15-22).- Tied for seventh among Maple Leafs in primary assists (10).|
|Mitch Marner||– Ninth among NHL skaters in assists (45). Has the most assists among NHLers who have appeared in 50 or fewer games.- Has 12 multi-assist games, which is tied for the fourth-most among NHL skaters.- Averaging 1.20 points per game, which tied for is the 13th-highest average in the NHL.- Averaging 1.83 assists per 60 minutes of ice time at 5-on-5, which is tied for fourth among NHLers who have appeared in at least 40 games.- Ninth in the NHL in primary assists (28). His 28 primary assists are the most among NHLers who have appeared in 50 or fewer games.|
|Auston Matthews||– Tied for first among NHL skaters in goals (43).- Leads the NHL with 32 even-strength goals.- Leads the NHL in goals scored at 5-on-5 (27).- Leads the NHL in wrist shot goals (26).- Second in the NHL in multi-goal games (10).- Tied for 10th among NHL skaters in points (43-29-72).- Fourth in the NHL with 247 shots on goal.|
|William Nylander||– Leads the Maple Leafs in game-winning goals (5).- One of 10 NHLers to average at least 14:00 minutes per game at 5-on-5 (14:34) while maintaining a goal per 60-minute rate of at least 1.20 (1.26).- Tied for eighth in the NHL in goals scored at 5-on-5 (18).- Averaging 13.20 shot attempts per 60 minutes of ice time at 5-on-5, which ranks ninth among NHL right wingers who average 14:00 per game at 5-on-5 (14:34).|
|Rasmus Sandin||– Ranks sixth among rookie defencemen who have appeared in at least 10 games in points per 60 minutes of ice time (1.12) at 5-on-5. – Has a 5-on-5 shot attempt percentage of 54.6 percent, which ranks third among rookie defencemen who have skated in at least 10 games.|
|Jason Spezza||– Averaging 2.05 points per 60 minutes of ice time at 5-on-5 this season, which is the fourth-highest average among Toronto skaters who have appeared in at least 40 games.- Averaging 0.90 goals per 60 minutes of ice time at 5-on-5 this season, which ranks fourth among Maple Leafs who have appeared in at least 40 games.- Averaging 1.16 assists per 60 minutes of ice time at 5-on-5, which is the sixth-highest average among Toronto skaters.|
|John Tavares||– Tied for 23rd among NHL skaters in multi-point games (15).- Has 10 points (5-5-10) in 10 games during the month of February.- Tied for 13th in the NHL in faceoff wins (529)- Has drawn a team-high 15 penalties this season. – Has 17 points (6-11-17) in 14 games against Metropolitan Division teams this season.|
CURRENT POINT STREAKS
|Kyle Clifford||Has points (1-1-2) in two consecutive games.|
|Jake Muzzin||Has points (1-2-3) in three consecutive games.|
|Jason Spezza||Has assists (2) in two consecutive games.|
|William Nylander||Two games from 300 games.|
|Jason Spezza||Three assists from 600 assists|
|Kyle Clifford||First goal as a Maple Leaf (February 18 at Pittsburgh)|
|Egor Korshkov||First NHL game (February 16 at Buffalo)|
First NHL goal (February 16 at Buffalo)
First NHL point (Goal) (February 16 at Buffalo)
|Timothy Liljegren||First NHL point (February 15 at Ottawa)|
|Cody Ceci (Ankle)||On injured reserve.|
|Andreas Johnsson (Knee)||On injured reserve.|
|Ilya Mikheyev (Wrist Laceration)||On injured reserve.|
|Morgan Rielly (Foot)||On injured reserve.|
|Man Games Lost: 160|
|February 19||Acquired forward Denis Malgin from the Florida Panthers in exchange for forward Mason Marchment.|
|February 18||Loaned forward Mason Marchment to the Toronto Marlies (AHL).|
|February 16||Recalled forwards Egor Korshkov and Mason Marchment from the Toronto Marlies (AHL).|
Placed forward Andreas Johnsson on injured reserve.
|February 14||Loaned forward Pontus Aberg and goaltender Michael Hutchinson to the Toronto Marlies (AHL).|
HEAD COACH SHELDON KEEFE
On what the process is for a team getting its confidence back:
Well it looks like the process that we want to go through is to just get embarrassed enough to the point where we just really look in the mirror and recognize what’s required for us to be able to compete at a high level at this stage of the season.
On if he is bewildered with recent performances:
Yeah, I am. It’s a different issue again today. We’ve talked about that. It’s been a little bit different each night. So if you had special teams on your bingo card of things that are hurting our group, then you’re happy today and get that one filled. But I think, ultimately, as we look at the different things, whether it’s giving up leads in the third period a couple weeks ago or getting scored on early on home ice or today special teams or what have you, I think the common denominator is just that the overall urgency and competitiveness of the group — I mean, special teams are the issue today, but we get a power play early in the game, we get a chance to take a hold of the game on the road against a very good team and we’re just not there. They’re just competing at a higher level than we are and then they get their chance and they just make it pretty clear what the difference is.
On if the team relies too much on skill rather than hard work:
It’s an easy narrative to latch on to. I don’t think we were relying on our skill or our talent or our work ethic at all today. But it’s not just today, and it’s not everyone either. Some guys are there consistently. You see the difference between a team that’s good some days and not so good others and a team that’s good all the time, no matter who’s in the lineup and you see that in the game tonight, the difference between them and us. They just work and when you do that, then the skilled players are having the puck a lot more and good things are happening and all that kind of stuff. We have to make a decision here what we want to be as a team because we’re going to run out of games.
On how the group finds urgency:
It’s a good question. I think it’s a decision to be made, obviously I have a role to be played in it in terms of demanding it from the group, in terms of accountability amongst the group, all those kinds of things. I think what’s happening here is as the injuries have piled up and as the schedule has gotten harder and the League has gotten harder, the time of the year and how desperate and urgent things are, more and more issues are coming up with our group in terms of some of our habits and details that are lacking and that’s where our team really has to grow. The skill is there, the other part of it has to be there. Without that foundation you don’t have a chance.
FREDERIK ANDERSEN (19 SAVES)
On the difference on special teams tonight:
I mean that’s a big part of the game. I think they capitalized on their chances, we didn’t and that’s usually when a team wins that category that bad, usually they come out with a win.
On his level of concern with the team’s recent performances:
It’s not been good. I think today was good lesson in seeing a team that’s built championship teams and they haven’t really missed a step. Every time they’ve had a guy hurt, they have another guy coming in and playing their bag off with their effort and their detail. Something we can learn from and hopefully we can, like I said, use it and learn from it, but we better do it quick.
AUSTON MATTHEWS (1 GOAL)
On if special teams told the story tonight:
Just early we had a power play and they were pretty quick and obviously still sleeping and then they get their power plays and they capitalize on pretty much all of them and that’s pretty much the story of the night. We just weren’t good from the start.
On his level of concern and wanting to turn things around:
I mean, it’s frustrating. We don’t think we’ve played this poorly since the last time we were in this building a few months ago. It’s obviously frustrating, but I mean we’ve got 20 plus games left obviously, we need to have more urgency in our game. We’re running out of time and have to start playing some good hockey here and really figure it out within this locker room going forward because obviously you only have a certain amount of games left and we’ve got a pretty tough schedule here coming up.
JAKE MUZZIN (1 ASSIST)
On what the team needs to do to move forward:
Well, everyone’s got to take a look in the mirror, and we’ve got to be better. That’s unacceptable. We’ve got to find the urgency, the passion, the love of the game, the love to compete for each other. All of that needs to come. I don’t know why it’s not there. I think sometimes we, like I’ve touched on earlier, when we struggle, we want the easy game. When you play good teams it’s not going to be easy.
On what a hard game looks like:
A lot better than that. On the forecheck, finishing checks, working their D, talking in our zone, quick exits, a way better penalty kill, a way better power play, responding the right way, getting mad at yourself for not performing the right way. Lots of stuff.
JOHN TAVARES (15:48 TOI)
On tonight’s loss:
Well, we got dominated in special teams. We just didn’t respond very well at all when we faced some adversity. Our urgency just doesn’t seem to be there consistently. I don’t know what else we need in front of us to motivate us. We’re obviously at a crucial point in our season and time of year. You know, we’ve only got so many games left and we’re fighting hard so we’ve got to determine what we want to do.
More on tonight’s loss and turning things around:
Obviously, the way that special teams went today really put us in a tough spot. When things don’t go our way, we’ve got to find better ways to respond. We just don’t respond very well getting down a goal, getting down two even though the game wasn’t being dominated on either side for either stretch. We did some decent things early and then we seemed to, I don’t know, either get frustrated with the way we’re playing or feel like things aren’t going our way. That’s this time of year, things are going to be hard. You’ve got to find ways to overcome it.