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May 14, 2017

Randy Carlyle

Anaheim, California - Pregame

Q. Randy, is there any update if you expect Bieksa to be in the lineup tonight?
COACH CARLYLE: We have options. Like I said yesterday it hasn't changed. He skated this morning. We have options of either putting him in or Clayton Stoner or Korbinian Holzer. I haven't got any update further than that for you.

Q. Randy, there's a thought among a lot of us that this is a must-win for you guys. Obviously it's an important game. Obvious question. But where would you put the importance of this in terms of you don't want to put too much pressure on your guys but at the same time this is obviously the big game?
COACH CARLYLE: Well, it's a big game from the standpoint that we don't want to go down 2-0 like we did in the last series against Edmonton and force ourselves to go into their building with them with a 2-0 lead on the series. Obviously that's common sense.

But again it's all about trying to get better than we were in the last game. We felt we didn't play close enough to the level that we were accustomed to with our group. They had lots of energy. They seemed to have more energy than we did for specifically the beginning of the hockey game. And then we just seemed to be able to get our feet underneath us.

And we don't look at it as all doom and gloom because we did a lot of good things in the game. We took the game to overtime and they found a way to score a goal in overtime. Early in the hockey game obviously the ice was tilted in their favor, but that can happen again. It's important we get off to a good start and maintain it because we're playing a quality team.

Q. It often takes power forwards to develop in this league. What have you noticed about Nick Ritchie's development this year? And what's impressed you with how he's come along?
COACH CARLYLE: Again, with Nick, for him it was more about understanding the work that was going to be required during the offseason. That's the biggest transformation. And that happens with most young players. The commitment that it's going to take. He's going to have to follow up on that year after year -- that he's a big, strong kid naturally but there are some things that he can improve on.

And a lot of that happened over the course of the summer and committing to a full-time program with our strength and conditioning guy, power skating -- all those little aspects that take a personal commitment when you're in time down during the summer months for him to become what we believe is a pretty good power forward and then a guy that can, I think, offer more as we go forward.

Q. I know this goes back a number of years, but when you think about it how unique is it or special to see two expansion markets meeting in a Conference Final and what does it say about the growth of hockey?
COACH CARLYLE: Again, I never really thought of it in those terms. I think for the traditionalists, obviously, Original Six and whatnot, they would look at it a little differently.

But this is 10 years for me in this market, coming close to it. Time flies when you're having fun. And it's always nice to see. But the growth in the game in the south has dramatically been affected by the Gretzky era and LA. That would be the biggest change. I have interest in California hockey with my sons being involved in the AAA program down in San Diego.

So I realize how deep the roots run as far as hockey now. And it's the elite athlete in the United States is choosing hockey as one of its preferable sports.

Q. With Silfverberg, what about him makes him such a prolific goal-scorer in the playoffs?
COACH CARLYLE: Silvy is a guy that's kind of unassuming. I think the people that have watched him play and then watched him score in the shootouts, I think that was the thing that caught most people by surprise, the type of release he had in the shootout portion of regular season hockey.

Previous to this year, I think he was something like 80 percent in the shootout. So I think that demonstrated his release and what he's got and he's finding the net now.

And there's another player that spent the summer as far as we were concerned that had to make some changes on what the expectations were, because he wasn't traditionally a starter, a goal-scoring statistic in October. He was a November player. And that had to change. And that was the message last summer. Silvy, we can't wait for you to catch fire, if you're going to play with our group, the offense that's required, playing on the Kesler line is going to have to be something ramped up.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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