3:42 PM: Gerard Gallant spoke after practice today and said (NYR):
- On the PP units, “Yea, switched them up a little bit, hopefully get some chemistry and success…you know what, there’s a lot of things you look at and different options and that’s what we shook down with. We’ll see how she goes and it does make it a little bit easier that they are in lines, too, that always helps a bit, but that isn’t the main reason. We just thought, looking at chemistry and different things, that is what we came up with today.”
- On the PP, “If they would shoot the puck a little bit and then it makes it a lot easier for us. Anyway, it’s not a huge issue, they had two games, but honestly, you just want to put people in the right spots. Mika is pretty important where he was at, we were hoping it was going to go real smooth and good the first two games, it didn’t. We try to adjust a little bit.”
- Do you want both Panarin and Mika in that spot and splitting them allows you to do that, “I wanted Mika in that spot, for sure. Panarin, he can go anywhere, he’s a rover, he can play anywhere and come down the other flank and do what he’s done a lot of the year and he can stay over there and make some plays over there, but that is the main reason, to put Mika back in that spot.”
- On how hard it is to add a player like Kane without much practice time, “well, you gotta do some video with him and show him some plays that have been successful with it. Obviously Kaner has been an unbelievable player for a long time in that spot, where he plays on the PP and he makes great plays and he’s a great passer, it’s just, we gotta sort of fit him in and they’ll get used to each other, the more practice time we get and show some video and plays that we can find some success with and hopefully go in the net, but the biggest thing that I found in two games is that people didn’t want to shoot the puck, they wanted to keep passing it and passing it and you gotta put some pucks to the net and then things open up and we didn’t do that enough. It wasn’t too bad in the Ottawa game, we had a couple of real good looks, but the last game it looked totally out of sync and I’ve seen Mika in the bumper spot, in the middle and he had chances to shoot the puck and he passed it over there. I just sort of said that we gotta change things, put him back where he’s comfortable and been successful. Hopefully it’ll work well, there is a lot of skill, a lot of talent there is no reason why it won’t work well, but we gotta give him some time, too.”
- On keeping the lines the same at even strength to work out the kinks, “yea, exactly. Like I said, it wasn’t good the last game, too many turnovers and we didn’t do enough of resets behind the net and low to high plays to open stuff up, but hopefully they’ll work it out. I like our lines and it’s up to them, they want to play with each other, go do it.”
- On the last few weeks, “It’s been a nutty two weeks, put it that way. It’s been a lot of adjustments in two weeks time, but if they asked me to do it over again for the same result that we’re going to get, I’dsay do it in a second. It’s well worth it to get the team that we’ve got now. We’re comfortable happy with our team and going to move forward. When you have to be short a player, suspension, whatever reasons, salary cap, well worth it for me.”
- Do you think things feel settled now, “I do, I feel a lot better. We got a good practice today, we’ll have another good practice tomorrow, we go back on the road for three in four, but I think we are building for the stretch run here, gotta get ready to play good hockey, sound hockey and, again, the last few games, 4-5 games, haven’t gone well, but overall we are building for the ultimate goal down the road. We’ll keep trying to get better and we’ll let these lines go and see how they go and we have lots of good options, we just have to get it going again.”
- Any chance for Motte or Lindgren this week, “They are both day-to-day, I’m not saying there is not a chance. They basically fill me in day-to-day, they are both skating and Motte had a good day to day and I haven’t heard nothing since I’ve come down here. He lasted the whole practice and Lindy skated this morning by himself. Moving in the right direction, but I can’t say which game or not. Maybe I’ll know a little more tomorrow.”
- How much do you think the team needed this little break, “I think it’s huge, there is no doubt. We’ve got K’Andre back in the lineup and Lindy is getting pretty close and Motte is coming back and then you’ve got your new guys adjusting and probably bringing their families into town, it makes a big difference, the four days, for sure.”
- Artemi Panarin, Vincent Trocheck, Patrick Kane, Alexis Lafreniere, Adam Fox
- Mika Zibanejad, Filip Chytil, Chris Kreider, Vladimir Tarasenko, Jacob Trouba
- Chris Kreider – Mika Zibanejad – Vladimir Tarasenko
- Artemi Panarin – Vincent Trocheck – Patrick Kane
- Alexis Lafreniere – Filip Chytil, Kaapo Kakko
- Barclay Goodrow, Jonny Brodzinski, Jimmy Vesey
K’Andre Miller has returned and is paired with Jacob Trouba, Niko Mikkola is paired with Adam Fox and Ben Harpur is paired with Braden Schneider.
10:14 AM: Lindgren has been skating on his own the “past few days.” (NY Post)
10:10 AM: Jonny Brodzinski has been called up from Hartford.
He has 1 goal and 1 assist in 16 games this season. He has 12 goals and 18 assists in 34 games with Hartford this season.
Cap Friendly tweets that this is likely an emergency call up.