home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


May 25, 2016

Ken Hitchcock

San Jose, California: Game Six

San Jose – 5
St. Louis ‑ 2


Q. Hitch, you talked about how they were going to hit you with a knock‑out punch early. Is scoring that early kind of equal, getting their crowd into it, giving them life scoring that early?
COACH HITCHCOCK: No. I thought the first period was as expected. I think when we didn't score on the three or four chances we had in the second when it was 2‑0 gave them a little bit of a gap. We had a big push at the end of the second.
I thought the third goal allowed them to play with five back. Then we had to take some risks.
But for me, the third goal was the killer.

Q. Obviously it was an amazing season. Were you satisfied with the effort of your team? Can you describe the effort of the other team?
COACH HITCHCOCK: You mean, over the series or the game?

Q. In the first period.
COACH HITCHCOCK: First period we were fine, did a good job. Managed the game. Knew what we were in for. I thought we did a great job. Managed it well. We knew we were in for a big push. We watched them play in other games when it was closeout time. I thought we managed it well.

Q. Ken, your team played its 20th game tonight. Any sense at all whether they were starting to run out of gas at all as a factor?
COACH HITCHCOCK: Not the team. We had individuals that they were struggling, guys that were high‑minutes players. We're going to look back on a lot of things. But one of the things that hurt us energy‑wise was our inability to close out when we had the opportunity. It extended the series. Ended up forcing us into playing players multiple minutes. Ended up really hurting us in this series overall.
Taking nothing away from San Jose. Their ability to check won them the series. They were committed a little bit better than us. They did a great job. Their forwards really worked and put a lot of pressure us on from the backside, constant pressure, and had the energy to play that way.
We made some tired decisions late in games, late in periods, late in shifts that we hadn't made.
But I think if you're going to look at one aspect, it's our inability to close off those first two series and get the rest that San Jose got by closing off L.A. so early.

Q. Two shutouts earlier in the series, then you didn't score until the third tonight. Why were they so effective against your offense in this series?
COACH HITCHCOCK: They're fully logged in checking. That's how you win at the end. Offense will take care of itself if you're fully logged in to check and you're 100% committed to forwards working for Ds, everyone working for the goalie. You're going to win.
It's very difficult to do. It's very demanding. It's what we preach from day one in training camp. When you get a buy‑in like they have right now, it's like gold.

Q. I know the moment is tough for you right now, but can you appreciate on the other side guys like Thornton and Marleau that have stuff said about them over the years, now they're finally there?
COACH HITCHCOCK: I have a lot of history with some of those players in various competitions. But I see the devastation in our locker room right now. Guys aren't even able to speak. I'm more worried about our guys right now, to be honest with you. We got some guys that are pretty shook up right now, so...

Q. What did you say to the team?
COACH HITCHCOCK: I'm not going to talk to them for a day or two. They need their space with each other. They've bonded together here better than any team I've coached in the last 10 years. They need their time together. They don't need me interrupting them right now. We'll talk at an appropriate time. But right now they need to be with each other.

Q. Is this one most disappointing because of how close you came?
COACH HITCHCOCK: Yeah. Yeah, it's really disappointing. It's so hard to win in the league right now. It's so hard to win a series. So hard to just get in the playoffs. When you get this far, you get this close, you think you got the opportunity.
When you have a team like us, which is very much a team, you want to see them successful. They poured a lot into it, poured a lot into it through a lot of adversity, then came out on top.
But they're hurting right now. We're all hurting. You don't want this to be our best opportunity. You want this to be a building block. In this game, in this era, in this cap world, you don't know where you're going to be a year from now.
This was a great opportunity. Guys are really, really disappointed.

Q. What do you think a run like this will do for the franchise, for these players, even though you didn't get to the end goal?
COACH HITCHCOCK: You mean, like for the fan base, for the city?

Q. The franchise as a whole. Finally getting over that hump we've been talking about for years.
COACH HITCHCOCK: I think the city of St.Louis, the fans, the people of St.Louis fell in love with the team because of this never‑say‑die attitude they have. They're disappointed like we are. But they fell in love with a hockey club that just poured it all in every night and had to.
It wasn't just connected to winning. It was connected to the way we play, the way the players carried themselves, the way they dealt with you folks in a very classy way. This was a special bond created by the players. They won the fans over and they won the people in the city over.
It's pretty impressive. I'm sure there's people in the city of St.Louis that are as disappointed as they are right now. But they won them over. They deserved to win them over by the way they acted and behaved.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297