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NHL EASTERN CONFERENCE FINALS: DEVILS v RANGERS


May 23, 2012


Peter DeBoer


NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK: Game Five

THE MODERATOR:テつ Questions for Coach DeBoer.

Q.テつ Patrik Elias, what have you learned about him this year and what is important about him?
COACH DeBOER:テつ You know what, his hockey IQ is so high because he's been around, he's been in every situation imaginable.テつ There isn't any situation that has come up this year that he hasn't been through before.テつ He's got a coaching mind in the dressing room for us.
In all honesty, it was critical that he bought into what we were selling as a coaching staff early so that it would translate to the room.テつ Probably him more than anybody because he had played here for so long.テつ Obviously a different style.テつ It was critical that we got him and Marty to buy in.
He was all in from day one.

Q.テつ I imagine no lineup changes.
COACH DeBOER:テつ Same lineup.

Q.テつ I don't know how much you break it down, do you have an idea of how many scoring chances you've allowed the first periods of these games so far?
COACH DeBOER:テつ We break down scoring chances by period and game.テつ I usually concentrate more on the final number, which has been very good through the series for me.
So I haven't looked closely enough at the individual period.テつ I imagine it's pretty good.テつ Our first periods have been great.

Q.テつ Can you just talk a little bit about Peter Harrold, this is a guy that wasn't on the team for most of the year, now playing important moments.
COACH DeBOER:テつ Yeah, I think when you look at the strength of our defense, their strength is to keep it simple, compete in the tough areas of the rink.テつ We don't have a lot of what he brings to the table.テつ I think that's what was attractive about him coming up when he did come up during the year.テつ I think he only came up once.
But you saw that.テつ I saw enough, we saw enough as a group, you know, that we felt he could add something.テつ And he has.テつ In a series like this where point play, especially at the offensive blueline has been critical, he's given us something there that we didn't have.

Q.テつ (No microphone.)
COACH DeBOER:テつ Well, Lou, he does nothing but win.テつ He knows how to win.テつ He knows the formula.テつ I think that's where the bar is with him, and it has been here since the day he got here.

Q.テつ Could talk about your philosophy of trying to keep fresh in the playoffs?テつ How do you kind of gauge that?
COACH DeBOER:テつ There's no formula.テつ It's just feel.テつ I have great help in my assistant coaches, Adam Oates, Larry Robinson, Chris Terreri, Dave Barr.テつ They all played a long time.テつ I think they have a real good feel for our room, what's needed.テつ I can rely on them a lot.
You know, we have an older team, especially at some key positions.テつ We've also got some young guys playing some key minutes, too.テつ We've got to manage that.

Q.テつ Can you talk about what you've gotten out of Steve Gionta and how important that is?
COACH DeBOER:テつ Same thing at Peter Harrold.テつ Really, he didn't play a game for us during the regular season.テつ The coaching staff we had before had him up for some guys, Larry and Chris kept telling me that this guy was reliable, he could help us, play at different positions.
When we were looking at the names when Josefson went down late in the season, he was the guy, top of the list that fit the criteria for what we needed.
We needed somebody to come and keep our fourth line identity, and he's done that.

Q.テつ How essential was it to you to show trust right away in that fourth line and how important is it to have a fourth line that you can use for the way you guys play?
COACH DeBOER:テつ Critical.テつ You know, I can't overstate the importance of it.テつ It's no secret that our season turned from the All‑Star break on when Lou added some depth up front and we got to the point where we could roll four lines.テつ We went out and got Ponikarovsky, we brought Bernier up and Zajac got healthy.テつ Our season turned at that point.テつ You can't overstate the importance.

Q.テつ Henrik is pretty calm and cool.テつ Have you seen him nervous at any point in the season?
COACH DeBOER:テつ Not once.テつ He's unflappable is the word I've used since day one.テつ Pretty special kid.テつ Might have been in a card game once with Kovy (laughter).

Q.テつ Pete, is there a certain point in Game4, or a game, where as a coach you feel as though you're crushing the will of the opposition?
COACH DeBOER:テつ I don't know about crushing the will.テつ You definitely feel that momentum.テつ We thrive off that momentum.テつ You're also very aware that the teams that are left in the playoffs here are very resilient, including the one we're playing, and capable of turning that momentum very quickly.
You know, you look at their last series against Washington.テつ I think Game5 or 6, empty net, score in the first shift in the overtime.テつ You're dealing with teams that are very resilient.テつ We want to push the pace and dictate and play our game.テつ When we are, that's when we're at our best.テつ We're also very aware these teams can turn that on you very quickly.

Q.テつ Previous seasons have been a tale of two halves.テつ Are you wondering which half you've got?
COACH DeBOER:テつ You know what, I was pretty confident that after meeting with some of the guys in the summer, getting through camp, that we had a real captive audience, a group the previous year did not sit well with them.テつ First time in the playoffs in 15 years.テつ They took that personally.テつ I got that feeling very early that they were willing to listen and do whatever they had to in order to make sure that never happened again.
It was a good feel right from the start.テつ I wasn't afraid of a repeat of the first half of the previous year.

Q.テつ What's the worst thing you heard from the people behind you, the crowd behind you?
COACH DeBOER:テつ At the Garden?

Q.テつ That you can say on the record.
COACH DeBOER:テつ No language there you can say on the record (laughter).
You know what, it's a great building, a great environment.テつ That's what playoff hockey is all about, the fans screaming at you, the passion in the building.テつ You try to tune that stuff out.テつ I can't give you a specific insult, but there's lots of them.
THE MODERATOR:テつ Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports


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