Starting Saturday, the Carolina Hurricanes will have a big opportunity to bank some points with an eight-game homestand.
Rod Brind’Amour spoke to the media before Friday’s limited practice, here’s a full breakdown of everything he had to say:
On if he’s figured out how he’ll handle the three-goalie situation: No, not yet. [Petr Mrazek] hasn’t really said ‘Hey, I’m 100% ready to play.’ We’ll wait and see. I think he is, but I want to make sure that I have a good conversation with him, which I haven’t had yet. He’s going on the ice right now, so I think that’ll be day to day, to be quite honest with you. We’ll just kind of monitor it as we go. But I don’t have an update for you right now.
On Vincent Trocheck: He’s been great. I said that after the first game, I thought it didn’t look like he missed anything. And obviously yesterday he was a difference maker. It’s a, I don’t want to say pleasant surprise, because I think we expect that out of him now, but just the fact that he had been out so long, that was impressive.
On being at home: It’s great, I’ll be honest with you. This year just feels really weird. It feels like we’ve had a lot of road time. I don’t know if guys look ahead that much. I don’t look ahead too much. The games just keep coming, so it’s all about getting ready. But I think it’s just nice to not be in hotels and stuff, to kind of refresh that way.
On managing the load on the players with a lot of games down the stretch: That’s what we’re doing now, to be honest. We’ve been doing that for the last couple weeks. We haven’t practiced very much. We’ve had a lot of meetings virtually and that’s our practice. That’s kind of what we did today. It’s not physically as demanding as people think. It’s the mental stuff. To get ready to play a game is a lot of mental energy that has to go into it. When you’re at the rink every day grinding, that takes a toll. So that’s the stuff you have to manage. And obviously the games, when they’re stacked in, that does take a toll, especially on certain players who play a really heavy game and heavy minutes. So all that has to get taken into consideration. That’s what we’re trying to manage.
On banking some points in the homestand: It’s crucial. Home away, it doesn’t matter. We’re in a fight every night to get those points. Certainly just because we’re home, it doesn’t mean we’ll be taking a breath, taking our foot off the gas or any of that. That’s not it at all. We want to focus on tomorrow and then the next game. It’s not an eight-game or whatever it is homestand that we’re looking at. We just have to stay in the moment and try to put our best foot forward every night.
On Teuvo Teravainen’s situation: It was concerning from the minute that he had the injury, came back and then got out again. Something wasn’t right, and then the fact that it’s gone this long is definitely concerning. It’s a tough injury. Nobody really has a handle on it. Hopefully he turns the corner. He’s going to go out and skate this morning. I don’t know what to tell you on that. It’s a tough one. We need him in the lineup, for sure.