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June 4, 2013

Joel Quenneville


THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  What was the thought behind not skating this morning?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  Well, it's a 6:00 game.  I don't think we've skated too many 6:00 games with travel in there.  That's all.

Q.  Whenever you put the big three together on the first line, Game5 in the last round, would you have been able to do that if you didn't think Michal Handzus could play?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  When we did it, we had two goals in three games.  We were looking for any kind of offense and it didn't matter where it came from.  Hopefully that could ignite us offensively.
We had a chance late in the season to play him, Kaner and Sharpie.  It clicked.  Basically it was an experiment we tried for a couple of shifts.  We exited that game thinking, Let's give it another look here.  Seemed to be progressive.  Had some looks in the Detroit series and the Minnesota series, as well.  Handzie gives it some consistency, defensively responsible.  But he's certainly playing with a couple real nice players that complement him as well.

Q.  The notion of momentum, is that still going?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  Well, we want to keep it.  Having momentum is something we talk about going into games and series, that you want to keep it as long as you can when you have it.  When you don't have it, you want to get it back as soon as possible.
That Detroit series, we couldn't capture it for a while.  Now we want to sustain it.
Easy to say that, but the start of the game tonight is critical.  That's probably what we want to show, that we keep it.

Q.  (No microphone.)
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  I think he's handling it fine.  He got a little more ice time last game, I think he's fine no matter who he's playing with.  He's a threat offensively.  He's dangerous with the puck.  We use him in both special teams units.
He gets some different kind of ice time.  I think he's a threat no matter who he's playing with.

Q.  Antti Raanta, is he a guy that can challenge?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  We'll address that later.  I know there was talk about him during the season.  I know they're excited about him, there's a lot of people in on it.  We were fortunate to get him.
Playing over in the Worlds, he did a real good job.  We're happy to have him, but we'll talk about that later.

Q.  Darryl Sutter has said Richards won't play tonight.  Does that affect you at all?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  I think we were surprised going into the last game, but I think it's about us going into the game.  We want to make sure we got four lines going.  We want to start that way and see how that goes.
We want to dictate the pace.  He is one of their key guys.  But we'll see.

Q.  They've had trouble scoring.  Do you expect that at any point they could turn it on, wake up?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  Well, I think we want to make sure that we check, check the right way.  I think offensively we want to limit what they're capable of doing.  We expect them to go to the net hard.  We expect them to get their forecheck going, spend time in our end.
But I think we want to make sure that we spend some time in their end.  Hopefully they're not in attacking us all night long.
It's a situation, whether you're talking about adjustments they're going to make, how they play in all zones, something we'll have to be aware about right off the bat.
I think it's important what we have to do in trying to set the tone.

Q.  Being able to get your transition going, against Detroit it took a while to get going.  Does team speed have anything to do with that?  Was Detroit a faster team?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  I think with Detroit, the way it started, they came at us Game2 different than Game1 where they had a real press on us.  They were forechecking aggressively.  I think it took us a little bit, Game3, where we got cleaner out of our end zone.  At least we didn't spend the quantity of times a Game2.  I thought we progressed in that series, had more outs and less time.
They did have good team speed.  L.A. has good team speed.  They have back‑end guys that can get involved, as well.
I think we're respectful what they can do both sides of the puck.  We want to make sure we are getting exits out of our zone, whether they're clean or indirect, spend as little time as possible is the objective.

Q.  Coming back to Handzus, can you talk about his integration into the team?  Has he become kind of a leader by example?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  He's that kind of guy.  He's low‑key, kind of quiet about his disposition.  Him and Hoss have a history.  Good friends from home.  Played on different teams together.  He played for Chicago before.  Was comfortable coming back here.  He's one of those guys that fits in seamlessly, very aware of what his role is, what the expectations are, fulfilling anything that can contribute to the team's success.  That's basically how he's gone about his business.

Q.  Talking about Detroit turning up the pressure on the forecheck, was that a good wake‑up call, was that good practice for this series?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  Certainly got our attention.  Very tight series, competitive.  They were on the ropes.  We feel we've gotten better and faster in our team game.  We want to try to continue to get better as we go along right now.  I think there's been a nice progression to how we're playing.

Q.  They've been so good at home.  Do you expect to see a different Kings team for tonight's game?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  They certainly play well here.  It's something that we got to make sure that we're aware of going into the game.  They start hard.  They start well.  They want to pressure you.
Let's be proactive knowing don't wait for it to happen, let's do our share.
Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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