The Carolina Hurricanes played their most complete game in about two weeks Sunday night, topping the Florida Panthers 4-2 thanks to goals from Sebastian Aho, Vincent Trocheck, Warren Foegele and Nino Niederreiter.
Trocheck, Aho, Foegele and Rod Brind’Amour spoke to the media after the win; here’s a full breakdown of everything they had to say:
On this being a complete game: It was a good effort all the way. We didn’t really have any lulls. There wasn’t a lot going on for stretches, but it was because there was no room. Both teams were playing on top of each other, and I liked the fact that we hung in there, didn’t get frustrated, just kept playing and then made some big plays when we had to.
On the desperation up two goals at the end: That was great to see. We’re up two, it’s not like one, but the desperation was there. There was a lot of sell out. Everyone was sacrificing. That’s team stuff. You’ve got to have that if you’re going to be successful. So that was really encouraging. It was a positive night all the way around.
On Vincent Trocheck: He’s got a lot of confidence. I think he’s a good player. He’s figured out how we need to play. I think he’s found a home. It’s no different than any job, I think when you’re feeling good about yourself and where you fit, I think you have success. Obviously you don’t expect him to score at this rate, but we’ll take it for as long as we can.
On Martin Necas: That’s an asset, for sure. That’s that game-changing ability that he has. You’d like to have that on your team. He’s never lacked for confidence, really. He’s always had a lot of that. But that’s also what makes him a good player. You’ve got to have the confidence to make plays. It’s my job to make sure he doesn’t try them all the time, teach him the time and place. But it’s his job to do that, and he’s been good.
On a two-day break: It’s that mental break, and it’s not even a break. We’re talking one day off, and then we had a practice. But it’s just getting a day where the guys can stay home and have a life for a little bit of time, I think just kind of recharge the batteries, then we’re right back on the grind. Did it help tonight? Maybe. We weren’t great, but we certainly were good. And we were good throughout the game. That’s what was positive.
On Tevuo Teravainen and if he had symptoms pop up: That’s exactly what’s going on. Whenever you have those kind of injuries, nobody really knows how long it’s going to be. Is he going to be a couple days? A week? We’ve had things go on in the past for a long time with this stuff. We always err on the caution with the players, you have to. Unfortunately right now, he’s kind of in the middle of something that doesn’t feel great. So hopefully turns really quickly and we’ll get him right back.
On the decision to do Storm Surges as a salute to front-line workers: I think we wanted to somehow give back and give our gesture to appreciate all the front-line workers that are helping us out here. Just continuing to do the storm surge and to appreciate them is just a small gesture of saying thank you to them.
On playing with Sebastian Aho: It’s nice to play with one of our best players. You’re just trying to work hard every game and support him out there, give him the puck. That was a great play by [Brock McGinn] to chip it out to me, but for me it’s just trying to stick to my game with whoever I play with, and just try to be a complimentary player.
On the Panthers: Every game means so much, because everyone’s in the same division. But you can tell that there’s something brewing here for sure. You’re playing the same team eight times this year. You can see there at the end, the emotions are up. It’s part of one of the reasons why you love the game, playing with some emotion and fire. It’s nice to see the guys stick up for each other out there.
On the Storm Surge: It’s fun. It’s good for the crowd. Obviously, everyone here loves it, so it’s a good thing that we do to keep them involved. Especially right now. First time that everybody’s getting back into the arena and it’s fun.
On what’s working for him: I don’t know (laughs). We have a really good team. My linemates are obviously doing a lot, power play’s been great.
On him scoring in every game against the Panthers: I think it’s just been the luck of the draw on that one. It’s nice to get one against the former team. There’s motivation every night, so I don’t think it’s any different. Just luck of the draw.
On this win feeling a little bit more complete: I definitely feel that we played a full 60 minutes tonight. We had been struggling to get to that the last few games. This has been the best one of the last four.
On the desperation at the end being about guys fighting for each other: That’s a big part of it. Our D were doing everything they could to make sure the puck stayed out of our net, especially late in the game there. Pesce and Slavin did a great job selling out on every shot and keeping us in it. It’s obviously a big part of it.
On this win feeling like a more complete one: I felt like that was a really hard fought game. Two good teams with not a lot of room out there. Every inch mattered and our mentality and the way we played was good right from the start. It was a good win.
On perhaps a new rivalry with the Panthers: It was our fourth game against them. I think it’s more of just two good teams playing intense hockey. Maybe there is something brewing, but it’s hard to say. Sometimes the games are just the way they go. It was definitely intense and fun to play.
On what happened at the end of the game: Good question. I was on the ice with a guy on my back the whole time, so I can’t tell you.
On if he anticipated the stretch pass from Slavin on his goal: I thought I was the only guy there, but we were both up there, me and [Martinook]. It was a great heads up play by [Slavin] and [Martinook] too. It was a nice pass on his backhand. But that just shows how good of a player [Slavin] is. He can make those plays time and time again.