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May 14, 2018

Jon Cooper

Washington, D.C.: Practice Day

Q. (Indiscernible)?
COACH JON COOPER: I don't know. I don't know if there's an art to it. We've just been on both sides of it. I can point out scenarios in the New Jersey series, definitely scenarios in the Boston series where, you know, you earn your breaks and things go your way, and you take advantage of that. Then the other side of things is what's happened to us the first two games where I'm not so sure we've earned our breaks the way we did in the previous two series.

When you don't do that, sometimes bad things happen. So you just have to regroup and that's it, and figure out why things haven't gone your way. But I know we can do that. We're doing some things in the series that we just didn't do in the playoffs. Partially some of that is attributed to Washington's play, but a lot of it's our play too.

Q. (Indiscernible)?
COACH JON COOPER: It's hard to explain. If we could, maybe we wouldn't be down 0-2. But it's quick. It goes fast, it's within 48 hours. You know, the series is two games over and we're on the wrong side of that. So the teams that have played (Indiscernible) over the last month we've done well getting ourselves to the Final Four. Haven't had a good last 48 hours and we need to fix that.

Q. (Indiscernible)?
COACH JON COOPER: Yeah, the one thing is emotions are so high and so low. The way things were going so well for us, one of the big things is don't jump on the cloud nine and sit here and say, oh, well, I thought we did a great job with that. So now that we're not on cloud nine, it's like, well, don't feel sorry for ourselves. It's just the opposite effect. We're okay. There is a reason we're here. We've done well with that all year, so I'm not too concerned about that. We just have to stay the course. Don't let every little thing bother you, and you'll be okay.

Q. (Indiscernible)?

Q. (Indiscernible).
COACH JON COOPER: If he's ready to go, then we'll have to make some decisions about that. But like I said, I'm not judging the playoffs in 48 hours.

Q. (Indiscernible) how do you go about that?
COACH JON COOPER: I'm trying. I'm trying to figure it out. It's okay.

Q. (Indiscernible)?
COACH JON COOPER: Oh, well, one thing about Alex, Alex is having -- how can I say this? How many years has he been in the league? 14 years. I think he's taken 14 years of frustration out in one playoffs round. Not round, like one series, or you know what I'm trying to say. Not just us. Like his whole playoff season. He's taking it out on that. There's a reason he has 600 goals and he's done all these wonderful things in the league.

In the past he's not had playoff success, and when you do get to taste a little bit of it, it really feels good.

In saying that, the one thing about Ovey is you can't allow him to have the puck in situations where he can shoot it clean, and last night's a perfect example. You just give him a 2-on-1, and you're going to give a guy of his talent that much time and space to put the puck in the net, he's going to do it. Some of those -- Game 1, that shot he takes, that's on his tape. When he does that, you've got to block those shots, and we're just not doing that, and we've got to do a better job.

Q. (Indiscernible)?
COACH JON COOPER: I don't know if there's anything different. I'm just confident in our group. So they've got 113 points for a reason. There's a really good group of guys there. They have a ton of experience. When their back's been against the wall they've shown a propensity to do it. We've lost two at home, and it's definitely not an ideal situation, but we're not done. It's not over. Just the mood in the room after the game wasn't depression, it was more of an anger. Like we want to go back. Let's get things going here.

Q. (Indiscernible)?
COACH JON COOPER: Well, couple things. One, we're probably not following the structure that we have in the previous two series. That's one thing. Second thing is we hit on his execution. If we get a chance to make plays and our team has the ability to make plays and we're not, it's either the pucks on the skates or it's too far ahead or putting it somewhere where they can't handle it. Well, it's just unlike us. I've been saying that, in an 82-game season, I can probably count 15 games where that happened. You know what I mean? It happens. Nobody plays a perfect game. Nobody goes 82-0. Nobody goes 16-0 in the playoffs. It's just heightened when you're at this time of the year and this time.

Is it discouraging that this has happened to us right now? There's no question. Come on, let's regroup, do what we do best, do what got us here and we'll be okay.

Q. (Indiscernible)?
COACH JON COOPER: Yeah, Vasi is our guy. He's been the rock of this team all year. To be honest, I don't think it matters who's in goal right now. Some of the chances we've been giving him and the number of chances. You played defense as a team. Your goalie's the last line of defense, and when you stack them all up and (indiscernible). But regardless who is in the net, you're going to give up the chances and that makes it hard on your goaltender. Believe me, he's the last guy we want to let down.

Q. (Indiscernible)?
COACH JON COOPER: You do. You need everybody. You just can't depend on a couple guys to do all the work for you. The problem is right now we're not getting any production other than from our power play. It's probably very reminiscent of what we did in Boston, and maybe not getting the power play on five-on-five, and that's happening us to Washington. That's not just a one line thing. That's a four line thing, and that's what we have to get better at.

Q. (Indiscernible)?
COACH JON COOPER: One thing about our fans and this team, I think we're just kind of a family together. When something's going great, everybody's happy for everybody in the family. When it's not, I think everybody's down. If there's one thing this team has done is we've kind of ridden the emotion of our fans and tried to pick them up, and they've certainly picked us up. I think the people that have been around this team long enough know what kind of heart is in that room, and they'll be all right.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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