The Carolina Hurricanes went into Dallas this weekend and took a pair of big games to improve to 9-3-0 on the season and remain unbeaten against the Stars this season.
Jake Gardiner, Jordan Martinook, Alex Nedlejkovic and Rod Brind’Amour talked about Saturday’s shootout win with the media over Zoom.
On trading Ryan Dzingel for Cedric Paquette and Alex Galchenyuk: It’s tough anytime you make a trade, especially on a game day. Dzingel was a good player for us, it just wasn’t the right fit as far as finding him the right role. It just didn’t get quite work out. Nothing against him. I thought when we did have him in the right role, he was fine, it just wasn’t going to work out that way. I think these are the kind of trades that help both teams in a way. For sure, in Paquette, we’re getting a fourth-line, probably center role, just to help out where we’re kind of missing there. Although tonight, I thought Lorentz played great in that spot.
On Jordan Martinook: You’re always rooting for guys that do it right and work hard. He’s such a team player for us. He got us back in the game. That line, we were kind of going nowhere there I felt like, in that game, and they kind of got the tide changed for us. It was a huge goal, and their line was good tonight.
On Alex Nedeljkovic: I think it’s great. He hadn’t played in so long, so that first game, I thought, OK, that’s the rust out a little. And he was actually fine in that game. But tonight, he looked solid, all the way around. Obviously the shootout, that’s tough. They’ve got some high-end players coming in on him, and he was right there with them the whole way. So good on him. He was, I think, the difference in the game tonight.
On being able to sweep the back-to-back in Dallas: It’s very nice. We weren’t able to get a couple of early ones to start the season. Obviously, we’d like to put it away and get that empty-net goal, but the team battled hard and we were lucky enough to get it done.
On getting past the rough start to the second period before scoring two late goals: We weren’t clicking. We were a little off, but good teams find a way to win. I think there was a shift, it might’ve been Lorentz’s line that got us going a little bit and got us some energy and we got a few goals at the end of the second period that propelled us to this victory.
On if he feels more comfortable now in his second season with the team: I think any time you come to a new team, it’s a change of systems and change of personnel, getting to know your d-partners. When I played with Fleury last year, we just weren’t on the same page and I’d say this year we are. We’re kinda reading off each other well. It’s been a good start for the team and myself as well.
On the trade and if he likes Cedric Paquette: Usually, I don’t. I’m not a big fan of Cedric Paquette, playing against him, so it’s usually a good sign for a teammate. To have a guy like that is going to be huge for us.
On finding their game and pulling out the win: I don’t even know if we figured it out, we just came out with the win. It wasn’t our best game, but at the end of the day, we got the win. It’s nice to come out with four points, that’s for sure.
On the team’s success in overtime and shootout: I think you look at the skill on our team and it translates pretty well to overtime and shootout. I think if you ask any guy in our room, we want to finish it before that, but knowing we have the confidence and those games have been going our way, it’s definitely nice to get that extra point. It’s nice to have the skill guys go out there and do their thing. I don’t know if it’s a great strategy to run with, but we’ll take the win.
On Teravainen scoring his first goal of the season: We want to get Turbo going, and it was just a matter of time. Obviously, with the COVID break, there are a few guys in the same thing, you’re just trying to get your timing back and get back to feeling good. It’s definitely nice to see Turbo get one, and hopefully, there will be a lot more to come. I have no doubt in my mind that’s the case.
On the acquisition of Cedric Paquette from the Senators on Saturday: We haven’t seen him this year, but just seeing him every (so often), he was the guy that was kind of the energy guy in Tampa every time you played him. He’s in on forecheck and he hits and he plays that hard-nosed game. I’m excited to have him, just because I feel like I can relate to him. If me and him can get it clicking and have that heavy fourth line, that’s something that’s crucial, especially in a shortened season. It’s nice to have the guys that can take a load off the top-end guys, especially when you’re playing every other night.
On the shootout: I wouldn’t say it was really that big. Just in the spur of the moment there at the end, you get excited, and you win. It was an intense game. They came out firing, and I thought, were the better team in the first period. We kept coming back there, they get a goal, we get two late. It’s frustrating to give up two late goals, probably both of them, honestly I’d like to have back. But to be able to just get the win, honestly, nowadays, just finding ways to get that extra point.
On standing up in the shootout: The first one, I kind of got a little lucky on. I misread it a little bit, I thought maybe he would kind of try to lift it off the ice. I just got a little lucky that I had my stick in the right spot there. The third one, it’s just reacting to it. That’s how I try to play the game in its entirety is reacting. I don’t like to do a lot of blocking and things like that. Just on that side, I guess, if you were to go into it on the third shot there, he really didn’t give himself much space to shoot being a lefty coming down that side and trying to go glove. You just find a way to make saves.
On Trocheck’s shootout goal: I’ve seen that a time or two. He’s pretty good at it, and I can honestly say I’m not sure what he’s going to do when he comes down in practices on me. So that was something really nice to watch. It was special.
On the mental process going into a shootout: Just one shot at a time. You can’t try to be perfect and say ‘I’m going to go 3 for 3’ or whatever. You’ve got to just focus and take it one guy at a time. I know some guys like to do some pre-scouting on guys and their moves or what not. To me, it just comes down to you’ve just got to react. Because you never know what they’re going to do, what they’re thinking. If you miss an angle by an inch, they’re going to take advantage of it. So it’s just trying to be as prepared and as centered as you are in the moment.