3:43PM: David Quinn spoke after the morning skate and said (NYR):
- On Kakko, “I think he has had typical ups and downs and he definitely looks more confident with the puck for sure. There is definitely more swagger to him without the puck and I want to underline, without the puck, there is definitely more swagger to his game without the puck. As most 18-year olds need to learn, this game, especially here, is a lot different than over in Europe.”
- Why underline without the puck, “because like most 18-year olds it’s an area he needs to continue to improve on. When we are in crunch time, as we are now, you evaluate everybody’s total game, not just the flashes and I think a player of his magnitude is always under the microscope so when he does something well we all get excited, as we do, but it’s a complete evaluation of his game. He’s made great strides and he has to continue to make great strides and I always use Svechnikov as an example, a parallel to him, he struggled last year and right about now is when he started making that pop and that is what we are hoping Kakko does.”
- At 50 plus games, is this what you expected, “you look at where we are at, and numbers don’t say everything, we’ve made a lot of strides. We look different, even when the bad nights are bad they aren’t ‘close your eyes and don’t let anybody watch,’ we have made a lot of strides in certain areas. We are not where we want or need to be but I think we are getting closer to that. We are young but we feel confident in our group and our guys feel good about each other and we feel good about them.”
- Why Georgiev tonight, “I expect him to play well otherwise we wouldn’t put him in the net. That period, and I know it was only a period, might have helped him a bit. He’s a good goalie, he’s had stretches where he hasn’t played a lot, last year and then he played very well, he has a history where he can play well by not playing a lot of games. He’s a good goalie, had a very good year and we want to get him in there.”
11:33AM: Alex Georgiev will start in net for the Rangers against Buffalo. (NYR)
David Quinn mentioned earlier this week that it was likely that Georgiev would make his first post-All-Star start against Buffalo.
Phil Di Giuseppe will remain in the lineup and Brendan Smith will be scratched. (Cyrgalis)