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2019-20 Rangers

What David Quinn said about Shesterkin, Kakko and more

David Quinn spoke after the morning skate today and said (NYR):

On Shesterkin’s play in the AHL during the break, “it’s not a surprise that he goes down there and stops pucks and wins hockey games, it’s all he’s been doing in the AHL. That is the thing that has been so impressive about him, he comes over here and is highly touted and had an awful lot of success at a lot of levels and he gets sent down, which I’m sure he is disappointed about, but he doesn’t sulk about it, he went down and was the best goalie in the AHL. During the break we send him down to play some more hockey and he goes down and continues to play well. I think that is a testament to his mental makeup.”

Is Strome good for tonight, “yes, he’s good to go.”

On Kakko since the break ended, “a very happy 18, soon to be 19-year old. He needed it and we’ve touched on this, I think people lose sight of the fact that before he’s an 18-year old NHL player he’s an 18-year old human being. All of the challenges that 18-year olds face, regardless of being in the NHL or night, are still true to a kid that is playing in the NHL. He was very happy he went home.”


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Have you noticed Kakko be fatigued, “not really, if you talk to him, he hasn’t played as many minutes so that offsets it. (Laugh) We were joking about that yesterday. I don’t see the fatigue with him. I think he had a little bit of that in November, along with some of our other younger guys, but I have not seen it.”

Is it possible Kakko moves back up in the lineup, “there will be opportunity if he does the things he was doing in that game, to be moved up. One of the things that I think people lose sight of, when you put an 18-year old on the top line, they are going to face the other teams top d-pairing and that can be a tall task. That is a little bit of part of the decision making process. Buchie has also played well, he’s been sick, he didn’t play great before the break but this is a guy that, I know statistically, hasn’t been rewarded but he’s done a lot of good things and a good fit for that line. That being said I wouldn’t be hesitant at all to put Kakko up there.”

What is the biggest challenge for an 18-year old in the NHL, “An 18-year old from Europe, there is a lot of challenges. The game is so different and he and I have talked a lot about that, the game is different for him. The pace of the play, strength of the players, the schedule, and you factor in that he’s moving to a different country and he’s just in a whole different set of circumstances. I always draw the analogy to Jack Hughes, Jack Hughes’ life hasn’t changed that much other than he’s playing in the NHL. He’s still living in the same country, his friends are close by, his family comes and sees him all the time, not a lot of an adjustment from a life standpoint. Kakko’s making a lot of adjustments in his life and that is a lot to throw at an 18-year old and I think he has done a good job handling it.”

On why Lindgren will be paired with Trouba, “I met with all the guys and halfway through the game I may put them back. This is more about being curious and trying to see, ‘we like what we have done, can we be better? I just want to see how this plays out.”

Do you need these points tonight, “Right now, regardless of who we are playing, these points are point we have to have. When the season starts every team says they want to make the playoffs and we are no different than anyone else and we can’t think about that. We have to think about taking care of the task at hand and being dialed in night in and night out regardless of our opponent and not thinking big picture and thinking about winning our next hockey game and taking it a period at a time. I know that might be cliche is, but it’s the truth and the only way you can put yourself in a position to achieve what we want to achieve.”

Did you do the math to figure out the playoffs, “I was never good in math so I didn’t want to burn my brain over the break.”