Post Game reports from Scott Gordon are generally SHORT after a loss. Last night’s lasted all of 2 minutes and 41 seconds.
“Was it the Lemaire style that stymied you guys?” But Gordon’s reaction was an immediate “No!” then he thought about it and continued. “The first period, I thought we controlled the play. We didn’t give up a lot of chances. The second period, we only gave up four shots. Obviously not cashing in on the chances from the first period, one of the best first periods we’ve had in a while. Coming out of it with a 2 - 1 deficit hurt us. We did a good job in defending, in not giving up much. But in saying that, they did a good job in the offensive zone. As far as how long it took us to get possession of the puck and counter attack.”
But the real question at hand was “Why was this game so chippy?” We don’t usually see the amount of fights we did last night when they are playing a team they only match up against every few years. The fighting started early and continued through out the game.
“I think our guys came out and certainly wanted to set the tempo to the game. Obviously there is a lot at stake for them (that would be the Wild). This is a big game for them. And it just built as the game went on.” Comeau later said it’s the Islanders’ job now to play spoilers.
Gordon said the incident where Miettinen pushed Blake Comeau through the door leading off ice was just bad timing on the guard’s part. I don’t think Comeau felt that way. Blake ended up with a penalty in each of the three periods. But the dancing started early on when Joel Rechlicz dropped the gloves with John Scott. Both remained on their skates which left the officials watching and waiting before they broke it up. Personally, I think both players were exhausted by the time they did. But that certainly did set the tone for the game.
It was just a matter of time before not only each of the Islanders heavy hitters had a run in and a turn in the penalty box, but even mild mannered Jeff Tambellini and future star Kyle Okposo made their mark on the visitors for Minnesota. They made sure everyone knows that playing the Islanders won’t be EASY.
When Gordon was asked about Yann Danis and his recent play, he understood. “I’m sure he’d tell you, he wasn’t that sharp tonight.” (He actually did.) “Around the net, he’s usually pretty good. He just didn’t seem to be fighting through the crowds. He was deep in his net. He wasn’t tracking the puck as well as he had been. He’s played well for us, so… The one thing he wants to make sure is that his play up to this point hasn’t been a fluke.”
For me, Gordon’s voice sounded as if he was more concerned with Yann’s confidence than his play but he did say that MacDonald may be back in net sometime during these last games.
Yann Danis was already in the locker room waiting for the press. He knew what was coming. “Obviously I wasn’t making the key saves. Some were lucky bounces, but I gotta be better. I gotta make those key saves.”
Yann was asked if he was concerned about his upcoming contract for next season. He said he tries not to think about it and just concentrate on playing the game as best he can. Personally, I don’t think his play has been a “fluke” to this point. Everyone has a bad game. Look what the young up-starts did to the “most winning goalie of all time.” They chased him from the net. This happens.
“I just have to come back, re-focus and play the way I was playing before.” He didn’t feel that the time off in between games really affected him. He said he did that all the time in college. A reminder of just how young these guys are; they’re using college play as a barometer.
The locker room is not optimal for interviews. There are too many conversations going on at once and too many outside noises. I knew I was going to have a problem, but I didn’t realize how bad it was until this morning. It’s like recording a cocktail party. You can hear bits and pieces of conversations, but it’s an overall din of voice and nothing is clear. I never say anything in the locker room, but so often I would love to just turn around and “SHUSH!” someone. I’m not sure if the others in the room just don’t think they are being distracting or just don’t care. It’s only the media, who cares. Or is it the media guys themselves are trying to throw the others off? Is it a battle between print and video? I can’t tell. All I know is… It makes me nuts.