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May 16, 2003

Jacques Martin


Q. Your thoughts on what your team has to do tomorrow to really stay in the series?

COACH MARTIN: Well, I think -- I don't think we are surprised from the standpoint that when you look at the teams, you have to expect that it's going to be a tough series. They are a good hockey club and we are probably in a similar situation that Jersey was after the first game where a win tomorrow ties the series, and you're looking at a best-of-three with two games in your own building. So, I think that you've got to look back, and how we played in the third period I think was our best period last night. It's amazing how the games have been segmented games where it's really a chess match or there's not lots of opportunities. You've just got to be patient and keep to your game plan. When you look at last night's game, the first ten minutes of the first period, two chances by either side and then you make a mistake, you try to do something out of the ordinary and it catches you. And then I think last night, we took some undisciplined penalties, which is uncharacteristic of our hockey club. I'm sure we're going to come back with good discipline and good determination, and I think we have to play like we did in the third period last night. I think we play best when we are aggressive and we do a good job forechecking. When you look at most of our chances, that's how they are created.

Q. Do you feel you are not fighting through the checks hard enough and battling?

COACH MARTIN: Well, I think it depends what you're talking about. I think in the third period, we did a much better job of getting to the net and winning some battles. A lot of times some games are determined by that. If you win the individual battles, you get the loose pucks, you've got to fight for your space. That's part of playoff hockey. That's part of being successful. You know, if you bring the attitude and the determination required, you're going to get the results.

Q. When the players have not been to this level before, seeing a goaltender like Martin Brodeur, does it get into their heads?

COACH MARTIN: I don't think so. I think that, like I said, we didn't put a lot of rubbers at him, we didn't throw a lot of pucks at the net. We tested him last night in the third period; we had five chances. You know if you play three periods like that, you get 15 chances, you have a better chance of scoring it. Doesn't matter whether it's Brodeur or somebody else at this time of the season. You're going to get goals. We just have to look at in Game 1, how we scored the goal. The first goal was not a hard shot in the slot. The second goal was really a nice play from down low, moving the puck back to the point shot. Most of the time, that's how goals are scored. You look at their goals, it wasn't a pretty goal; it was a turnover, point shot deflected.

Q. Do you need Alfredsson to step up or how would you rate his play in this series?

COACH MARTIN: I don't think it's one player. I think the whole team, we know that, I think we realize that to beat this team, you're going to have to play better and play within our strength and do the things that we can do right.

Q. Some of the players talk about the lack of emotion that was in that game last night, is that something that you can do as a coach to try to spark that kind of an emotion?

COACH MARTIN: I don't know if there's a lack of emotion. Like I said, I think the first ten minutes, it's almost like a chess game. I think sometimes -- this is not a team that you're going to overpower. This is a team that's smart. This is a team that plays well without the puck. That's why they were No. 1 all season as far as goals against. That's their style of game. You've got to be prepared to match that and make some smart decisions, attack when it's there. I think what you need is the intensity to win the battles, the determination to win the battle one-on-one. It's not overcommitting.

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