Despite a hard-fought effort, a Hurricanes team that played with just 19 skaters fell 3-2 in Columbus Monday night.
Rod Brind’Amour, Nino Niederreiter and Alex Nedeljkovic spoke to the media after the win, here’s a full breakdown of everything they had to say:
On only having 19 skaters tonight: That’s a better question for [Don Waddell]. I just was told we wouldn’t be able to do it. It’s salary cap stuff and all that. I don’t really know how all that works; I just know that’s the way we had to do it.
On if that was frustrating: Not for me, so much. I think it’s part of it. It’s the way it’s going this year. You’ve just got a lot of injuries and it’s part of it. We’re spending to the cap now, so it’s a good problem to have when we’re going after, getting and keeping players, I guess it’s just one of the things you have to deal with.
On Vincent Trocheck: I know that he thought he thought he might be able to play so I’m hoping it’s not too long. I don’t really want to get into too much about it. I think it’s that he took a shot and it didn’t feel right. So we’re just making sure. We’re playing it safe.
On Brock McGinn: He plays hard every night. He’s very consistent in that. And I think he’s getting some bounces that he doesn’t normally get. He didn’t get much last year. Now he’s gotten a few. And obviously we’re playing him with more opportunity and in a different role right now. He’s been really good.
On if Trocheck will be back quickly: I can’t comment one way or another. I’m hoping so but I really have no idea.
On Columbus being awarded a penalty shot: I’ve never seen that, a penalty shot called from that blue line. Usually they give you a chance to see if the guy’s going to catch them or whatever, but I guess that’s the rule now. I’m not sure.
On giving up a goal late and the mistake on the late goal: You can’t have it anytime. I know exactly what happened. We’re working hard to come back, our defenseman thinks he’s got help and the help thinks that ‘It’s your guy and take him.’ It happens, and it shouldn’t. It’s certainly not a lack of effort. We really worked hard tonight, being short staffed and on a back-to-back, I thought we grinded it out and probably deserved better.
On Alex Nedeljkovic: The first one goes off our guy, it’s a crazy bounce. And then the penalty shot, what are you going to do there? And then really we gave up two breakaways, so you can’t really fault him there. I thought he was good the rest of the way.
On how encouraged he is individually with his good start to the season: It always helps when you get on the board very early. But at the end of the day, it’s tough talking about goals when you come off a hard loss. Tonight was a hard-fought game. We could have had a couple bounces for a chance to put another one in there.
On the difference in the third period: I think the biggest difference was that we got pucks in deep, which was definitely key. We didn’t do that in the first two periods, and I think that made it very hard on us playing the first two periods because we just didn’t play the way we wanted to play. The third period looked like what we wanted to do.
On if it was good for him to see a couple shots early: Yeah, like you said, they had a few shots there from the outside. The guys did a good job all night of keeping things to the outside for the most part. They really didn’t get much in tight there. It kind of made my job easy tonight. It felt good to get going right out of the gate.
On how he felt like he played overall: It was just not good enough. We did a good job defensively, like I said before, not giving up anything. I’ve gotta find a way to make a save. They got a fortunate bounce on the first one, and then two breakaways that just, they beat me clean. I didn’t get much of a chance on either of them. I’ve got to find a way to make one of them, if not both of them and try to find a way to bail the guys out there.
On getting to play in Columbus as an Ohio native: It’s awesome. It’s a lot of fun. This is a good building. I remember the first game. It was like a Tuesday or Wednesday night, there definitely wasn’t a full barn, but they were loud. It was loud. That cannon, it gets you. Even when you’re ready for it, it surprises you. It’s definitely a cool environment to play in.
On if he’s ever seen a penalty shot awarded on a play where the skater wasn’t even past the red line: I don’t know if I’ve seen it in that scenario. From my end, it was hard to tell where he was in comparison to the D and if he really was clear cut or not, or if we could have chased him down. For what I thought, either way it looked like I was getting a straight breakaway, so it was just delayed a minute maybe because they had to get everybody set up. Like I said before, I’ve got to find a way to make a save on that or that last one.