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NHL STANLEY CUP FINALS: KINGS v DEVILS


June 10, 2012


Peter DeBoer


LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: Practice Day

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Coach DeBoer.

Q. Was this one of the more pleasant flights that your team has taken?
COACH DeBOER: I don't know if there's a pleasant cross‑country flight. Eight hours after you finish playing a game...
Obviously the fact we're still playing, we've still got another game to play makes everything good right now.

Q. The Flyers were able to do it. Do you think in this era, the 3‑0 deficit isn't quite as insurmountable as it used to be?
COACH DeBOER: You know what, I don't know. That's for you guys to debate and talk about. Like I said when we got down 3‑0, we didn't feel we belonged in that hole. We felt we were better than the spot we were in. We're trying to claw our way out.
That's for you guys to decide the magnitude of it and how important it is, where it fits in the history of it.

Q. Last game, did you feel that was the first time in the series the Kings lost their composure and you maintained yours?
COACH DeBOER: I don't know about 'lost their composure.' You could see some frustration. Understandable. That's the spot we want to put them in. We want to keep that pressure on them.

Q. You talked before the last game about if we can take this one, that could really turn the series. Do you feel you've shifted the pressure on them?
COACH DeBOER: I don't think there's any doubt about that. I know if we were in that spot, people expected this to be over two games ago. So the fact that we're in the spot we're in, I don't think there's any hiding from that pressure.

Q. Your thoughts on Zach Parise. I would compare him to Sidney Crosby in terms of his ability level matching his compete level. They're both very high. Would you agree with that?
COACH DeBOER: Yeah, that's fair. They have a lot of similarities. Both smaller in stature than players like Stoll and Kopitar, but so strong on the puck. They play a power game combined with skill. I think that's a fair comparison, especially in what he brings for us.

Q. A couple of the Kings players admitted this morning they were distracted, family, friends, tickets. When you're coaching a team that's 0‑3, clawing its way back, is it in some way easier to coach? Is focus easier?
COACH DeBOER: I think any time you're at home in the Stanley Cup Finals, focus is an issue. It's the biggest stage, biggest time of year. Everyone's got people come in wanting tickets, accommodations. That's something every team tries to eliminate.
I don't think that's something we're immune to. I think it's definitely an advantage to be on the road and to have those distractions limited. I think that is probably why you see the good road records you do deep into the playoffs.
But we're not immune to that. That's something that we've had to deal with, too.

Q. Are you someone who not only knows about hockey history, but appreciates it? Does it allow you to appreciate the position you're in, what you're trying to do?
COACH DeBOER: No, I don't look at it that way. I don't look at it as what a great accomplishment to be in, a 3‑0 hole and to claw your way back out. We're trying to win a Stanley Cup. If I had my way, we would have never got in that hole.
I didn't feel we deserved to be in that hole. That was the hand we were dealt. We made a little bit of our own bed there and now we're stuck with trying to get out of it.
But you're giving me too much credit to think I'm thinking bigger than that or beyond that.

Q. 4‑0 your team when facing elimination. Where does that come from?
COACH DeBOER: I think it's a testament to character, to gut check, to leadership in the room, all those things. That's when the rubber hits the road, so to speak, for your season and for your team.
We have had an ability to rise to the occasion.

Q. Back to Game4. It seemed like a party atmosphere in that building. Did you notice that? Was that any motivation, they seemed to be ready for a coronation?
COACH DeBOER: Sure, that's motivation. When your bus has to pull by the 10 limos parked on the road for the after party, that's definitely a motivation.

Q. With the comebacks, we see what Marty does on the ice in those big situations. Does he do something with the team behind closed doors that is important in those situations?
COACH DeBOER: I can't put a finger on exactly what he does. It's how he carries himself, how he interacts. He's unflappable. You never see the pressure, the situation we're in. That's contagious to the guys in the room, around him, and how we play.

Q. You talked about focus. Apparently young Taylor Stevens tweeted she'll be behind your bench again for Game 6. I wonder if you expect your players will have the same inspiration?
COACH DeBOER: We won last time she was there. I'll buy her a ticket if we can do that again (laughter).

Q. A few times in last night's game, third period especially, you juggled some of the lines around. What was going on?
COACH DeBOER: You know what, just playing with the lead. We went from kind of four to three lines and moved some guys around. We had a few skate issues, some guys in and out of the dressing room with some lost edges that we had to shuffle some guys. It was nothing more than that.

Q. How many times does Volchenkov have to be hit in the face for him not to come back?
COACH DeBOER: His reputation for this time of year precedes him, from his playoff runs in Ottawa. He's delivering exactly what we thought. He relishes the contact. He relishes this time of year, the physical play. The more of those guys you have on your side, the better this time of year.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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