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May 23, 2017

Mike Sullivan

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - Postgame

Ottawa-2, Pittsburgh-1

Q. Could you give us the explanation you received on the no goal, and just wondering if you were satisfied with what you were told.
MIKE SULLIVAN: On the no goal?

Q. (No microphone)?
MIKE SULLIVAN: I didn't get an explanation.

Q. Would you have liked one?
MIKE SULLIVAN: I didn't really ask because it doesn't matter. They're not going to change their minds. They're going to make the call that they think is right, and it doesn't matter what the rest of us think.

Q. I feel like overall your team played a really solid game. Are you pretty confident, if you keep playing the same way, you'll get the results in Game 7?
MIKE SULLIVAN: Yeah. I thought we played a real good game. I thought we dominated zone time. We had lots of chances. We didn't score tonight. The puck didn't go in the net, but if we continue to play the game that way, then I believe we'll get the result.

We did a lot of really good things out there. We had a lot of shots. We had traffic. We had zone time. We had possession time. There were a lot of things to like.

Q. Mike, on their game winner, I guess, what did you see? Was it a situation where you didn't have enough guys on the right side of the puck or just kind of a blown assignment in the defensive zone?
MIKE SULLIVAN: Well, obviously, it's a three-on-two with a chaser. We're right there, but it starts deep in the offensive zone. We get beat with a guy coming out of the corner, and they end up with a three-on-two. We've got back pressure on the puck. It's not like we didn't have people in the area. It was one of those -- just one of those hockey plays.

Q. Mike, your special teams have been pretty good. Tonight was one of those nights where you had -- if you had some early power plays, you could have grabbed the game. Were you happy with how those went?
MIKE SULLIVAN: I think we've executed better on the power plays in this series. It wasn't our best tonight, but I don't think it was terrible either. I think they did make some plays.

You know, I thought Ottawa was a little bit more aggressive, which is something we had predicted.

In the penalty kill, it's a five-on-three goal. Those are tough to defend.

Q. Do you feel like you guys did anything different in the offensive zone than maybe you did the last couple of games that you didn't do tonight? I mean, just goaltending and finishing, and that's about it.
MIKE SULLIVAN: I think, when you look at the offensive zone time and the possession time and the shots we had and the traffic in front and the amount of scoring chances that we generated, you know, it's hard to not like a lot of that. The puck didn't go in the net for us tonight, but I believe, if we stay the course there, then pucks will go in.

Q. Coach, would you say that Anderson stole one tonight?
MIKE SULLIVAN: Oh, I don't know. He played well for them, I'll say that. He played well. He made some timely saves.

Q. What's the mood like on the bench during a game like that? When you're doing a lot of good things, but the puck's not going in, how do the players respond to that? How do the coaches respond?
MIKE SULLIVAN: It's fine. We just kept playing. We told them, just keep going. Don't get discouraged. Just keep playing the game the right way, and we'll just keep trying to score and just do it the right way. I thought, for the most part, our team did. It's not like we gave up a lot of scoring chances at our end of the rink either. The goals they got were a little bit opportunistic, but that's hockey. We've got to put it behind us and look to the next game.

Q. Geno was a little bit critical of himself, felt like he should have scored a couple more tonight. Did you see anything that would give him a reason to be critical in the second period?
MIKE SULLIVAN: I thought he was a force. He had a lot of opportunities. I think he has high expectations of himself, and he had a lot of really good looks. He scores one goal. Could he have had more? Sure. But I like the way he was playing. I thought he was -- I thought he played a determined game.

Q. You missed your chance to finish off a team in each of the first three rounds the first try that you had. Do you see any common denominators in those games? Are there any lessons to be learned from those experiences?
MIKE SULLIVAN: No, I don't see a common denominator other than the fact we're playing good hockey teams. I think it's hard to win. So we're playing good hockey teams, and these guys, they're playing with their backs against the wall. I really liked a lot of our game.

I thought we had a great start. You know, we talked about having a good start. We had a great start. I thought we had -- you know, as I said, we won a lot of face-offs. We had some zone time. We controlled the shot clock. There was a lot of this game to like.

Obviously, we're disappointed in the result, but I don't think we can get discouraged by that. I think we've got to take the positives from it, and we've got to build on it, and we've got to become a more determined team for Game 7.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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