Game 2 morning skate-Comments from Darryl Sutter

On having to use so many different players this season:

“The number of guys we used.  Everybody used…That’s still playing.  That’s probably a big reason we are still playing.  It was totally different with the schedule and the travel.  We talked about that a whole lot.  We happened to use everybody, and be able to put guys in situations.  So that’s…Basically you can just continue with that.”

On the role that Brad Richardson plays:

“Well he’s played a good role for us.  Not always was happy about it, because you’re not using him all the time.  He prefers to play center.  That’s one thing that him and I always talked about.  He likes to play center.  When he came into the NHL, he came in as a centerman, and with our…Once Mike came to the kings that pushed…You know had Kopi, Mike, Jarrett were the three guys, and then with Fras coming in last year as the fourth guy.  So it was a huge competition there.   And then you look at a guy like Trevor who was a natural centerman.  So now he’s back in that position.  Quite honestly he’s not a…Hey, you want to take advantage of him.  He has to play well for us, because it’s not easy to be quite honest with you.  When you look at San Jose’s four centermen.  If they use Joe and Logan, Pavelski, and Gomez as their four centermen, it’s pretty much you gotta matchup.  That is the matchup in the series.  So that means Brad has to play well against somebody, whoever it is.  You take advantage of home, but you don’t necessarily after this.”

On if it has been a seamless transition with the changes on defense:

“Not seemless at all.  Quite honestly.  You know Marty was one of our regular six last year.  I don’t know what he ended up playing.  If you go back, a 12 to 14 minute guy.  His partner was Greene.  So it was left/right, veteran kid.  We didn’t have Greene, and then Marty struggled at the start.  Then he got hurt, and he didn’t play.  So we really knocked that right out.  Willie Mitchell was Slava’s partner.  You know we brought Muzz in.  He played a few games two years ago and was sort of the eighth or ninth guy within the whole program when you look at it.  He came in, and it wasn’t seamless with him.  It was an in and out thing.  You know, we just sort of pushed him into it.  He plays only one side of the ice really.  Keaton was the guy who really did a lot of that seamless stuff for us.  Because he could play the left and right side for us.  If you look at his minutes, they were less than everybody, but he was the key guy in it.  Because he was a kid you could use killing penalties, he was a guy who could play both sides.  Even though he was a guy who would play ten.  Even when you look playoffs when he’d only go seven.  He only played a few minutes, but he was a really important player.”

On his evaluation of Martinez playing the right side with Muzzin:

“He can play both sides.  It’s just trying to…Really don’t have pairs.  So it’s more our situation reads.  Not easy switching sides.  Not many guys that are elite guys in the league…You know, Robby did it because he played with Dale Tallon so he moved over to that side.  There’s a handful of guys in the league that can do it better on their off side.  One being Rob Stewart.”

On if Toffoli earned enough trust to be put on the ice at the end of Game 1:

“Why not?  Probably next to Lewie, he’s probably the best winger we have on the boards.  Recognizing and feeling pressure, so why not?”

On Voynov taking a big step this year:

“Yeah, I think Slava for sure.  Because Slava plays behind Drew, which he should.  They both play the right side, and usually Matt Greene is that third guy, but Slava is that next guy out of the box.  Which means he has to play against top players.  That’s nice.  It certainly wasn’t seamless for him.  He stepped in and played very well at the start, because quite honestly, he went to the American League and played games.  So when the season started this year he was ready to come in.  For a while he was probably our best defenseman.  Then he hit that place around the first of March, where when the minutes were up, his game went really off until the last few games of the regular season.  His game wasn’t where we needed it to be, and he’s been back.  You know what?  That tells you something about the kid, but it also tells you that he’s still a kid.  There’s peaks and valleys.”

On Penner upping his game in the playoffs:

“You know, I’ve only coached him two playoffs, and we’re only seven games into this one.  Last year in the playoffs, you know he scored big goals for his.  His minutes were actually less than they were in the regular season.”

On if there’s any pressure on a certain player in the face-off circle with the absence of Stoll:

“No, it gets spread out.  You know Jarrett’s a great face-off guy, but Lewie can take some of that, and Jeff Carter can take some of that too.  It’s a little bit of matchup.  You gotta be careful of that too.  Starting to move some guys around, and if they lose draws they forget what position they are afterwards and things like that.  So it gets spread around with our team, because some nights…You know I pay attention to tonight, not last night, on how they’re doing.  Because we have Richy, Kopi, Carts that are more veteran guys on face-offs.  And they a lot of times are telling you how they’re doing, or what they think, more than you are telling them.  And that’s why you see a lot of…We’ll be talking from the bench on the ice to those guys to see, and they’ll tell you.  If they’re okay, or they want somebody else.”

On the emphasis he places on matchups:

“I think it’s more important this series.  Because unlike our last series or any from last season would be, how much more guys play.  So those are matchups.  There’s no question about it that there’s times during games because of fatigue, or the way it works, that you can get caught that I’m against somebody that I shouldn’t be.  That’s gonna happen, twice a game, right?  If it happens more than that, that’s on you.  But that is gonna happen.  On the other hand just taking from last game, just pretend you’re doing it, and see how many of your guys played five to eight minutes, and see how many guys played 18 to 23.  So most of those 18-23’s, they’re usually on the ice too long.  And that’s when you go from…That’s a fact.  When you go from 30, 16, to 8 teams, those guys are usually on the ice against each other.”

On the gap in this series allowing him to play his top-6 more:

“If it’s a one goal game, tie game, it doesn’t matter.  There’s no rocket science there.  Unless it is a face-off situation or something like that.  Or a skate getting done, or somebody getting sewed up, right?  But for the most part, anytime the players can get an extra day, those guys that play a lot, it’s way better to have.  It’s not a problem for them to recover.  You know what?  You learn, you watch other series.  Like Chicago/Detroit last night.  Detroit played a helluva’ game, but the other team at the end had a little bit more in the tank.”

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