The Hurricanes walked away with a point against the Columbus Blue Jackets Thursday, but couldn’t do enough to get the second in a 3-2 overtime loss, despite two goals from Sebastian Aho and Dougie Hamilton extending his point streak to 10 games.
Aho, Hamilton and Rod Brind’Amour spoke to the media following the loss, here’s a full breakdown of everything they had to say:
On not letting things spiral: You don’t ever want to lose. It can snowball, but I don’t think it will. Tonight was obviously not a good start. The first period was really bad, which I somewhat expected to happen, to be honest with you. That was just the way our last couple days have been. We kind of got going and it was a pretty even game after that, but it’s tough to play 40 minutes in the NHL and expect to win.
On the first period and if he expects all the games against Columbus to be like this: Yeah. It’s a good team. They’re going to grind you, and they do it right. You have to fight for everything you get. That’s what happened tonight. That’s par for the course. We know what we’re getting into, we just weren’t quite ready to dig in at the start of the game. Then we did in spurts the rest of the way. I think it was a pretty even game after the first period and even overtime, we had our chances. That’s how it goes.
On starting on time, and how he can help that happen: There’s nothing I can do. We talk about it all the time. We talk about it so much that they’re probably sick of hearing it. They know the message. The other team gets paid a lot of money to get their game going in the first period, too. This notion of ‘You’ve got to play 60 minutes and dominate’ is absolutely absurd. We’re not going to be able to do that. Nobody does that. But, when I say play 60 minutes, it means it has to look the way it should. And it didn’t in the first period. We were late to everything. And when you’re late to everything, you lose all the puck battles and that’s just not how we play. That’s on the individual to ramp it up. That’s what you have to do in this league. There’s no other way to do it.
On Sebastian Aho: He’s played well all year. I hate that we have to always talk about “He’s scoring, that means he’s playing well.’ No. I don’t even notice that. I don’t even look at the stats on those things. To me, it’s he’s played well all year. He’s a great player, he’s going to score. He may go in spurts where he doesn’t, but that doesn’t mean he’s not playing well. I think he understands what he has to do as a leader on this team, and he’s done that.
On finding their game in the second but losing it in the third: I thought we outplayed them in the third to be honest. I think we had a rough start obviously. Had a couple of tough days the past couple of days. It was tough for us to get going I think. It was good by us to get better in the second and third, but it was a tough first period. That was the problem.
On his goals: It was a good pass on both goals by my linemates. We won a lot of puck battles back during our power plays. Obviously they were gassed. Made a nice play in the slot and I just one-timed it. It was nice to see them go in.
On coming out better in the second period: We didn’t like our first period at all. We weren’t skating hard enough. We just gave the first period to them too easy. We got back, which is always a nice thing to see that a team digs in and comes back, but yeah. The first period was not good enough.
On the third period: There wasn’t too much going on in the third, but we had our chances. Obviously they had a good goalie today and he made some nice saves. We didn’t lose because of that. It’s more the beginning of the game that kind of cost us. Third period was fine I felt.
On being careful to not let things slide the other way: Absolutely. We can’t be too negative. Obviously we have to learn from the mistakes, but we just can’t let this creep in. We’ve got to keep our heads up and go back to work. It’s just the key to our game. That we outwork the other teams. That’s our goal for the next game.
On the message to start on time: As individual players we have to take care that we’re ready right from the get go and just try to build good team spirit in the first too. To me, individual players have to take care of the body and more importantly, be ready mentally.