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NHL STANLEY CUP FINALS: BRUINS v BLACKHAWKS


June 20, 2013


Joel Quenneville


CHICAGO, ILLINOIS: Practice Day

Q.  Two quick ones with Brent Seabrook.  How much has his game elevated since the start of the Playoffs?  And just hearing the banter between him and Toews kind of lifting your captain up, does he have a bigger leadership role than we see from our side?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:¬† I think Seabs, since I've been here, he's one of the guys that doesn't wear a letter but he's definitely a big part of our leadership group.¬† Even at a young age here, five years going back, he was probably the one voice that you hear a lot in the locker room and probably the most on the bench or around even practice or game time or preparing between periods.¬† I think he's the one guy that usually says‑‑ you'll hear him the most.¬† He always says the right things, and he's a great teammate, a great competitor, and I think he got excited about getting back playing with Dunks and getting more ice time, and I think his game responded accordingly.

Q.¬† Joel, how did you solve the face‑off situation between Game 3 and Game 4 where there was such a disparity in Game 3 and in Game 4 you tightened it up?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:¬† Yeah, there were two things that we definitely paid attention to was our face‑off and our power play.¬† We wanted to make sure that we were more of a factor in those areas, and I thought one goes hand‑in‑hand with the power play's effectiveness, and starting off with a loss draw.¬† But I thought we studied it, we looked it; the discrepancy was just at a different number.¬† We had never seen anything like that, so we had to do something different.
I think all the centermen talked about it, looked at it, and any way we could get a 50/50, have the wingers help out or tie them up or whatever could play into our favor, but I thought the guys got a good start in the game.  I thought they got better as the game went on.  But certainly I thought the awareness and preparing for it was in the right place.

Q.  Joel, I'll get this one out of the way early:  You've got a backup goalie who set a wins record, I believe, this year, he's played in the Final, he's got a lot of experience.  Given where the goals seemed to be going in on Corey, do you even consider at this point making a change at all?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  No, not at all.  No, we're very comfortable with Corey.  Corey has been rock solid all year for us, and when he's got the ball, he's been outstanding, and he's the biggest reason why we're here today.

Q.¬† Piggy‑backing off the face‑off question, when you go to address that after that deficit, what kind of thinking goes into it?¬† Is it emphasis, more film, practice?¬† How do you combat when the team does that?¬† And has the importance of face‑offs kind of changed over the years given the advent of more statistics involved in hockey than maybe decades ago?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:¬† Well, I think everybody places a different emphasis on stats, and certain stats can be important when you look at the importance of winning a key face‑off or meaningful face‑offs.¬† Usually you look at starting special teams with winning a draw.
But when you look at it almost down to the science of what they're doing to beat us on certain face‑offs, you're looking at your approach going into it, and I think that's how you start off, and then anything you can do differently to start off from a different point, that might be part of it.
I just think you're starting to be a little bit more familiar with that same face‑off guy.¬† There's things you can try to do differently, and I think that repeatedly getting beat certainly gets your attention, and you'll try to do different things, but that's going to be an ongoing challenge.

Q.  That game was obviously a lot different than the other ones in the series, but why?  What were the biggest reasons?  Why were you guys able to find so much more open space?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:¬† I think there's been stretches in all the games where it's probably been a little bit more free‑flowing than others.¬† I think Game 1 had a lot of action; the start to Game 2 was going up and down the ice; last night's game started off like it was kind of ‑‑ not a lot of room, but I think once the puck started going in it seemed like it was end‑to‑end.
But I think in all four games, and basically from every minute of every game, the pace has been high‑end, and you've got to make sure you're moving.¬† They're quick.¬† We want to make sure we use our quickness, as well.
Sometimes whether their odd man breaks or you're getting through the middle of the ice cleanly, but sometimes you know if you're going to get something at the other end you'd better cash in or you'd better take advantage of the puck because you know it's going down the other end, so you want to make sure you manage that better.¬† I don't think you want to just get out there and exchange high‑quality chances because the team that's a little more patient will probably have a little more success if that's the case.

Q.¬† Jonathan's role on this team is obviously well‑defined, and part of that role is to score goals.¬† As a coach can you be satisfied with his game when he's not scoring goals?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:¬† Well, I think he's one of those players thatwhat he brings to our team is what you look for in a leader, in a captain.¬† He brings all the ingredients of how you want your team to play, how hard you want your team to play, plays it the right way.¬† You know, he kills penalties for us.¬† Offensively I think he gives the opponent a lot to be concerned with.¬† He's going to play heavy minutes.¬† He's going to play the match‑up minutes against their top D.
In all four series he's given the opponent a lot to be concerned with.  I know he hasn't scored a lot, but the guy he's playing out against game in game out in these series, Johnny has been basically at least even with him or ahead of the game.
We measure scoring chances at the end of the every game, and over the course of the season, regular season, Playoffs Johnny always finds a way to be on the right side of that.

Q.  Was there something early in the game yesterday where you saw that maybe Nick wasn't going to be as effective, and with a young guy do you explain that to him, make sure he keeps his head up even if his minutes are reduced?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:¬† No.¬† In the course of a game, I think every game is different.¬† We went into the game, I think we were waiting to see how things played out.¬† Certain match‑ups you're looking for in the course of a game.¬† And we're on the road sometimes you can't get it, and sometimes the score reflects it and sometimes you get deeper in the game and you're going to wait and see, but I think that was probably the case last night with the lead.
Later in the game we didn't go to him too much, but we'll definitely visit with him as we go along here before the next game.

Q.¬† You mentioned that end‑to‑end hockey, which seems to suit you guys maybe better than the Bruins.¬† As a coach do you want to see things tighten up as the series goes on, or would you like to see that back‑and‑forth game continuing?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:¬† I think we'd like to get down the ice as quick as possible.¬† We don't want to let them go down as quick as they can go.¬† I think there's a lot of skill and speed on all their lines.¬† There's a give‑and‑take as far as the quality and quantity we give up.¬† We always measure how we play is what we give up, and they can generate stuff.
But I just don't think we want to just exchange scoring chances, knowing that we're giving up odd man breaks.  That's not part of our game and it's not part of the way we want to play.

Q.¬† The Johnny Toews that we see is not a guy that gets very high or low.¬† He never looks like he lacks confidence, but Seabrook has gone to him in the penalty box once to calm him down once in these Playoffs, given him a little pep talk about goal scoring and getting in the right frame of mind for that.¬† Is Jon just like everybody else when he goes through those up‑and‑down moods and his confidence levels?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  Well, Johnny, you look back on his regular season, he had quite a year this year.  He got off to a really good start and had a stretch of games where he was as good as a player as there's been at any point over the course of the season.
And now we've gotten in the Playoffs, and now we see the focus is on not scoring much, but I still think the other intangibles to his game bring so much to our team.
Obviously you're a player and you're a scorer, you love to score and you get excited when you score, but not scoring really as far as him getting down and getting frustrated, you can look at that one period in Detroit where he didn't get to the bench, but I still think his approach, getting prepared for the game and preparing his team, or our team, for the game, he hasn't changed his demeanor.
He knows how important, what winning is all about and that's his focus and that's his motivation.

Q.  It looked like your defense was a little bit more active in the offensive zone.  Is that specific instructions, especially coming off two games where you only scored one goal?  You're just trying to create more?  What do you tell them, to take a few more chances but not too many?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  Well, I think you look at the way Boston plays, and puck possession is important.  If we can keep it as long as we can in any zone, we'd like to do that.  Managing the puck is something we emphasize going into the game.  Incorporating our D off the rush or in the zone is something we've done all year, and if we can get that, that alleviates a little bit more freedom with the puck, just give them more options away from the puck is something you'll visit with.
But I thought we had a little more puck possession time, which is easier said than done against that team, but something that will be ongoing challenge.

Q.  Jonathan said earlier he actually thought the first couple games you guys may have been giving Chara a little bit too much respect.  Do you agree with that, and was there a more concerted effort to go after him last night?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  You know, I think when you're playing against that guy, he's out there for half the game, and I think that whether it's staying away from him, going after him, playing through him, working his side or the opposite side, it's something thatwith their team game, I don't think you want to strategize too much, and where you travel around the ice, I just don't think you want to get distracted just because he's there.  You don't want to go where you have to get to to be successful, and that means the front of the net.
I thought we did a much more effective job of getting to the net last night.  That's something that we have to do, and I think we should be more prioritized with getting in front of the goalies than worrying about Chara.

Q.  Have you noticed anything about Corey?  I know you're so confident, but have you noticed why he's having so much trouble with the glove side?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  You know, last night's game was one of those games where pucks were going in.  We'll visit with that, but all year long Corey has just moved on and he just moves from save to save and it doesn't faze him.  I'm sure he'll be excited about getting back in there and get a good practice under our belt in the morning skate, and he'll be back to doing his thing.

Q.  Not so much last night but a couple other games it looks like he's kind of had his struggles.  What do you want to see from him?  Do you need to see more from him?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:  Well, Nick has got some nice assets, and I think quickness, getting up in the attack and turning pucks from defense to offense right away is one of his strengths, and in the puck area make sure we're killing plays and defending quickly in the puck area and eliminating players with a puck possession game by them in their zone is what we're looking for.
But at the same time, Nick gives us a nice presence on the back end, gives us nice balance.  We didn't play him a ton last night, obviously not much, but we still think that we'll be home tomorrow, we look to get him back going.  I shouldn't say tomorrow, Saturday.

Q.  Along those same lines, Nick Leddy was such a big part of the effort this season, all regular season long.  Is this part of maybe the maturation process of a young defenseman still at this point?
COACH QUENNEVILLE:¬† Well, we look at our defense, we've got a nice defense for sure, and we've had some depth, and we didn't even have to address one of the‑‑ even Michal Rozsival half the games didn't play, and in that rotation we know he was capable of absorbing way more meaningful minutes than he was playing, let alone not even playing some nights.¬† So it was always a decision, but we felt our depth on the back end, we've been much better than we've ever seen here.
Last night those five guys basically assumed those same kind of minutes across the board and rotated those guys evenly.  Basically the first time we did that all year, and we'll see how that goes out.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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