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May 18, 2017

Zack Smith

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - Practice Day

Q. Do you have to worry about complacency after something like that last night?
ZACK SMITH: It's something you kind of have to keep in the back of your mind, for sure. You don't want to get too comfortable. You know, a lot of positives when you score that many goals. You win at home in front of your home crowd, you have to check your emotions too. So we'll have to be aware of that tomorrow.

Q. What are you expecting from the Penguins?
ZACK SMITH: Expecting a big pushback from them. You know, I don't think that was their typical game, obviously, they played last night. So we'll be ready for a lot better game from them tomorrow. They're a proven team. They've been here. So they know a thing or two about composure as well. I think we can expect a big pushback from them tomorrow.

Q. A lot has been made about how you guys are frustrating teams. Is that a pretty good example, what you saw last night?
ZACK SMITH: Yeah, I mean, I can't speak for them whether they're frustrated or not, but we play a tight system, and we don't -- I think we limit our offensive chances in terms of what the other team gets a lot more than maybe most other teams. So that might tend to get frustrating. But I'm sure it's nothing the Penguins haven't seen. I'm sure they're going to adjust and be ready for it.

Q. Expecting to see Matt Murray tomorrow?
ZACK SMITH: You know, it's -- not sure what to expect. It doesn't change our focus at all who's in net. They've got two great goaltenders over there to choose from, whether it's Fleury or Murray. They're both proven goaltenders.

So in terms of our game and what we do to get pucks to the net, how we get pucks there doesn't change for us at all. We're not too worried about that.

Q. Were you surprised at the success that you were able to have on Fleury?
ZACK SMITH: No, I don't think necessarily surprised. We've played pretty well for the most part this series, except for the one period in Game 2. We knew, if we stick with it, we'll get some bounces going our way, and we did. You know, we had definitely some fortunate bounces, call it what it is, and we were able to capitalize on them.

You know, we'll just have to be ready for whoever they come back with tomorrow.

Q. Both coaches have said in the playoffs that momentum doesn't carry over from game to game, but does anger? Things got a little bit nasty at the end of the game, not unexpectedly, but momentum might not go from game to game, but does anger?
ZACK SMITH: Yeah, I think that's a very true statement. You can research many different series so far this playoffs, and there's been games where teams have won by a few goals, and then they come back the next game, and the momentum's not there. You're starting from scratch.

You know, we're kind of conscious of that. We talk about that too. But at the same time, I don't think, like you said, the anger, some of the frustration towards players within the game goes anywhere. That's always there.

Q. Was the crowd loud enough for you?
ZACK SMITH: Definitely the loudest I've heard the crowd here. It was exciting. Definitely nice to get off to a good start and get the crowd into it. It was nice to be in front of our home crowd again. Pittsburgh had a very loud building there, so it was nice to kind of reciprocate that.

Q. Zack, do you see any indication that Pittsburgh is wearing down physically?
ZACK SMITH: No, I don't think so. Yesterday was one game. The game before that, they played very well and probably deserved to win that game. So I don't think they're wearing down. They're a good team. They've got lots of guys jumping into the lineup to fill spots. We're ready, though.

We just have a lot of respect for that team over there. They're the Stanley Cup champions, and I think, if you start thinking like that, that they're getting worn down, you know, that might come back to bite you.

Q. What did you guys do in that game that you (no microphone)?
ZACK SMITH: I don't know, a few bounces, I guess, was pretty much the start of it. You know, Hoffman's goal to get us started was a big one. We like playing with the lead. We can play our game. We don't have to -- you know, we seem to turn over the puck less when we're playing with the lead.

So the start was huge. Like I said, we got some favorable bounces that we capitalized on and just kind of built from there.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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