Following a 3-2 overtime loss to the Nashville Predators Tuesday night, the Hurricanes are one step closer to the real thing.
Rod Brind’Amour, Ian Cole and Ethan Bear spoke to the media following the game, here’s a full breakdown of everything they had to say:
On his thoughts on the overall game: I thought the first half was a little rough. I think the guys that hadn’t played, the pace wasn’t quite up to speed. Then I thought in the second half the game was really, really good. It was exactly how we want to play, so it feels nice. I feel really good about the game. Obviously the result, whatever. Overall, I’d much rather finish the second half and play that way than the other way around. It’s a positive for me.
On Seth Jarvis: He played pretty well. He certainly doesn’t look like a teenager in his first camp. That was a real team out there. They were coming hard. He was impressive. That’s all I can say. He looks like he belongs in this league, that’s for sure.
On Ethan Bear and Ian Cole: They were a real good, solid pair. This is why I love playing these games. I don’t know these players, really. Now I get to see it. You know they can play defense, but they created a lot of offense too, which was great. They had a really good game, solid game. Probably our best pair back there tonight.
On if it’s hard to think of a kid like Jarivs playing in junior: For sure. That’s the problem with the system, unfortunately. There’s still a huge learning curve. There’s still a lot of mistakes being made, and that’s not just from not being here and understanding it, but he’s a quick learner from what I’ve seen in the time I’ve been with him. So yeah, the system on kids like that, it definitely doesn’t help them.
On if the second half of the game made him feel better about where the team is: Exactly. That’s what I meant. I didn’t like how we were playing in the first period, then we started getting a little better. It felt like, ‘Oh man, we’re not doing things how we want.’ But then you could see things clicking a little bit. Still a long ways to go, but it was positive for sure.
On if Jarvis will play in the final preseason game: We’ll kind of take a breath here and see. We’ve got a couple of days. There’s a lot that goes into a decision like this. You don’t want to rush a kid, for sure. That’s the worst thing you can do. But put it this way, he’s doing all he can do. That’s what you like.
On if he feels similarly about Jack Drury: That one is different. He played well, too. He didn’t look out of place. The first couple of preseason games were hard to judge because they weren’t really the lineups that you’re going to see. Tonight they had a real good NHL lineup and played hard. They were playing to win, and he didn’t look out of place. That’s good. A good showing for our young guys, for sure.
On Antti Raanta: He was good. He made some big saves, especially early when we were running around a little bit. Then he didn’t really have a lot of work for, I don’t know, almost a period there. He made a couple of big saves there at the end of the game to get us into overtime.
On if he’s earned his spot on the roster: Yeah. I think I put a lot of work in this summer, and obviously coming off of last season, I don’t want to say I knew what to expect, but I knew what the battle level was going to have to be every single time I stepped on the ice coming into this camp.
No spot is given, especially when you are trying to break into the league. I’m proud of myself for my hard work, and I think I really put the work in in the summer and this is kind of the best I’ve ever felt coming into camp. I just try to play a simple game, and I don’t try to do too much. Obviously the offense is nice. Seeing the puck go in tonight, it’s a bit of a sigh of relief. I didn’t have too many last year. I felt good tonight working with my line, and I feel like overall we had a pretty good game.
On if this game felt more like a regular season game: Absolutely. We played those guys, it felt like, 100 times at the end of last season. I think that rivalry is still there a little bit. As you could tell, as the game went on the rough stuff started to pick up and the game was a little chippy. Guys were starting to throw some more hits.
That’s the intensity that was brought in the playoffs, and it’s nice to see that carry over. Those games are a lot of fun to be a part of. You never don’t have your legs in those games because the intensity is always on and you’re always engaged. It’s nice to have that competition. I hope every game is like that.
On if they got into their game Tuesday despite the end result: Yeah, and that’s the beauty of preseason. Coach came in and told us that it’s preseason, so at the end of the day it doesn’t really matter. A loss is a loss and nobody wants to lose, but there’s so many positives we can take away from that game. Early on we showed a little bit of rust, and that’s to be expected. That’s what preseason is for. But eventually as the game went on, we started to get into our habits a little bit better. Once we started playing our game, I think you could tell we were a little bit more relentless in their end. All in all, there’s a lot of good we can take away from the second half of that game. We’ll go to video tomorrow and look over our mistakes and the things we did well.
On if it felt more like a regular season game Tuesday: Yeah, I think it did. Certainly the pace was up and mistakes were getting taken advantage of. I thought we did a pretty good job later in the game. I think earlier we were still knocking a little bit of rust off with our full unit, but I think as the game went on we got stronger and stronger. I think that it was certainly a good stepping stone going forward.
On where he feels the group is in terms of getting on the same page: I think that we’re all in a pretty good spot, to be honest. I’m not going to say that there’s not going to be some things here and there that might be a little different, but for the most part every team in this league wants to play similarly. They want to give no time, no space. They want to close quick. They want to end plays, transition and go play on offense.
Using that as a foundation, every team pretty much plays the same. Every team wants to do the same thing. They go about it in different ways, and that’s where the reads are going to be a little bit different, but if you keep that same mindset then it will all kind of work out.
On playing with Ethan Bear: I thought we played well. There’s certainly room for improvement there, and it’s only the preseason. But I think for the most part we did a good job. I think that he reads the game well. He’s aggressive. He knows when to play defense and when to play offense. He skates really well. I think we read off each other pretty well with the limited amount of time that we’ve played together. Like I said, it’s a good stepping stone for us as a team and us as a pair and us as a D corps, too.
On Seth Jarvis: I think he’s been great, to be honest. You can see the confidence that he plays with, which is one of the biggest determining factors in my mind of guys that are going to be able to kind of wade through and stay continuing to grow, mature and get better. I think he has that. He certainly has the talent. He has the head for it. But I think his confidence level is high, and he’s trying to make plays. He’s making the right reads. He’s playing defense. He’s doing all of the things that you want to see. I think that coupled with the skill that is already there, I think he’ll grow and mature into a heck of a player.