It was a bad night for the Carolina Hurricanes Saturday in New Jersey, as the Canes fell to the Devils 7-4 on the road.
Carolina took an early 2-0 lead, and led 3-2 in the second period, but couldn’t keep the Devils out of its net. Jack LaFontaine made his first career start in goal for the Hurricanes and it didn’t go well, with the Devils putting seven past the rookie.
Following the loss, Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour,
On his assessment of the game: Not good. I didn’t like it.
On if there’s any positives to take away: We had a couple guys play pretty well, but not 20, which is what you need. Give them credit. They played hard and did what they wanted to do. I didn’t think we did much of anything.
On what changed after the good start: Well, we were fortunate to be up two, I thought. We got a lucky bounce. We just weren’t sharp. We had a couple that were good, but when you’re off a little bit that’s what it looks like.
On what he says to LaFontaine after a game like this: Their goals were real goals. We gave up 40 shots. That’s not going to win games. I hate that that’s how that went for him. But we’ll get a plan for him. That’s part of it. But the group in front of him wasn’t good enough.
On when he found out Martin Necas would play: He got cleared this morning right before we got on the plane. So, that’s when I knew.
On his goal: It was a puck up the wall from [Tony] DeAngelo and then [Jesperi Kotkaniemi] chipped it. I was fortunate to have speed and make a nice little chip shot over the goalie.
On getting his first goal of the year: Yeah. Obviously not the way, I would hope we would win, but it’s nice to get that out of the way.
On having the back-to-back with the weird travel situation: It’s the NHL. There’s no excuse. We know we’re a good team. We just didn’t come out with our best effort. We’ve got to get back to work here and know as a group that that’s unacceptable.
On how you encourage a young goalie when they have a tough one: It’s the NHL. There’s a lot of good players out there. He’s coming from college. He made a lot of saves still. I think they had 40 shots. He’s got to keep his head high. It wasn’t his fault. I don’t think our team played the greatest. The way we can play, I think he would have had a better outcome. He’s got to keep his head high. He’s got a lot of hockey left.
On his assessment of the game: It definitely wasn’t the way we wanted to play. It’s not our game. Our game is getting pucks behind their defensemen and making it hard on them. We’ve got to learn from this, but everyone in the locker room knows that’s not the way we play.
On LaFontaine: We didn’t help him out at all. We left him out to dry on a few of those. It’s tough. His first game, but we’ll be there to support him. We know he’s a good goalie, and he’ll bounce back from this.
On if it’s easy to lose track of the game a bit when you may be pressing to help a young goalie: I don’t think so. I think the way we are used to playing, we don’t give up many chances. It doesn’t mater who is in net. We feel comfort. The way that we play, usually it’s very aggressive. We just didn’t have it tonight. We’ll have to move on from this.