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June 15, 2015

Joel Quenneville


Chicago – 2
Tampa Bay - 0

THE MODERATOR:  Questions for coach.

Q.  Does it ever get old?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  No.  No.  It's the greatest feeling in the world.  Once you do it once, you can't wait to do it again.
It was special tonight doing it in front of our own fans.  The building was electric.  The town had a buzz to it.  Had some good ups and downs.
Stamkos hits the post early.  We had a couple decent looks ourselves.  Scoring first was definitely important tonight.  I thought we played a really good game.  I thought Game5 and 6 kind of comparable to the way we rose to the challenge in the Anaheim series.

Q.  How fitting is it that Duncan Keith opens the scoring, the Conn Smythe Trophy?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  Great selection, right guy, based on a lot of reasons.  But a huge goal for us tonight.  Active in the play.  Defends as well as he does, he still creates a lot of offense for us against top players.
Kaner makes a little play off the entry, the second goal was special as well, very timely.
It was great to share with our fans tonight.

Q.  To see Kimmo lift that trophy, what was that like for you?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  It's a great moment.  I was very proud of him, especially coming here.  Wanted to come here.  Wanted to end his career with a chance to win the Cup.  Very fitting.
I told him not too many guys, I remember Ray Bourque did it, maybe Dallas Drake are the only guys.  Not too many guys get to play their last game hoisting the Cup.
Very happy for him.  Ups and downs.  Thought he would give us some real predictability in the last three games here, settle our own team down in our own end.  Played smart, simple.  Got a good stick, stayed strong in puck areas and gets to go out a champion, which is special for a great career.

Q.  What can you say about how challenging it was to beat the Lightning and what did you tell Cooper after the game?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  I told him you should be proud of your game.  You've got a great young team.  You're going to have good runs going forward.
They're a great hockey team.  I guess the area, few people out west knew how good they are, are going to be.  There's a lot of good things they've got to look forward to.
But they're fast.  I think that took us a while to get going a little bit in our own speed game.  It's how well they check and how quick they are.

Q.  Now that it's over with, what sort of challenge with those top four defensemen, Oduya?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  He's great.  Battles.  Comparable to the way they all do.  You could talk about Hammer, Dunks, Seabs, the guys that came in, Riemer out of nowhere.  Kimmo coming back in.  Losing Rosy.  I thought no matter who came in was reliable, dependable, not big minutes, but effective.
Then we get back to the big four, with all the long games we played in the Anaheim series.  This series, didn't get the chance to relax at any moment.  Every shift was huge.  That's why those guys' consistencies in their game was a big factor, how well we checked.  It started with those guys and Crow in the net.

Q.  What is the toughest part about assuring the continuity of a team over six years, with personnel changes, et cetera?  What is it that's most important?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  Consistency, the way our top guys prepare.  They want to be the best they can.  They make players around them better.  Their focus, concentration, each game is important to them to be the best they can be.  They lead the charge and they play the right way.
Even looked like an example, Kaner, this series, a lot has been made of his production.  You knew it was a matter of time before he would deliver.  But he's still a threat.  It's tough to contain as many top guys as we have night in, night out.  The balance of our team is one of our strengths.

Q.  This is obviously a special group of players with Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews.  What has it meant for you as a coach to be able to share the ride with men like that?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  Fortunate to be around them.  I walked into a team ready to go.  They took off and they keep going.
It's kind of like what we just talked about, how they make guys around them better, play the right way, send the right message, and consistency.  New guys coming into the team, they see that's the message, how important winning is to the team, to the players, to the town, to the organization.  It's infectious.

Q.  How soon do you start thinking about next season?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  It's a long way away right now.  I thought about it last year when we lost Game 7.  It's going to be a battle and a war just to try to make the playoffs.  I'm going to enjoy this one first (laughter).

Q.  Can you divulge some of the things the guys had to fight through in the playoffs?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  No, it's still fresh.  Shawsy was a game‑time decision tonight.  I knew he'd end up playing, but he almost couldn't go.  We could go on and on.  That was just today.

Q.  You talk about what you had to go through last year, the frustration.  What you went through last year, now to what you accomplished this year...
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  It's pretty remarkable.  You got a Game 7 at home.  Two‑goal lead.  They go on to win the Cup.  Lose in overtime against a really good L.A. team.  It shows you the competitiveness of our group, how tough it really is to get back to where we were.
That's why we're excited about the fact we got to where we were when we started the series.  It was a great achievement.  I think the guys remember last year, how important it is to find a way.
As the series progressed, we just kept getting better.  It's the guys that deserved it, basically how they compete and how they push each other.
THE MODERATOR:  Thank you, Joel.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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