Joe Thornton on Sharks struggles in LA and roster depth

Sharks captain Joe Thornton shared some thoughts following his team’s pre-game stake on Wednesday, in advance of facing the Kings…

On why it’s difficult to play at Staples Center:

“They play hard. Doesn’t matter where they play, to be honest with you. They’re just a real competitive team. Goal tender right out to Kopitar. They play solid, they don’t give you too much. Obviously playing here, they play really well, but even on the road they have good games against us.”

On their record thus far:

“They’re always tight games. As you can see, they’re 2-1, 1-0, 3-2- and it’s probably the same way up North. They’re just good, competitive games and hopefully it can swing our way.”

On how happy he looks:

“Just having fun again. We’re all having fun. I’ve always been the same type of guy, but I think once the team is playing well, I think everyone has a better attitudes.”

On how deep the Sharks’ roster is:

“Yeah, by far. We never had four lines that could play against anybody. In the past, we relied off a couple of guys offensively, but now who do you check against? It’s a very, very deep team.”

On the trust level that the players have with each other:

“Whoever goes on the ice, we are confident in. If they go against Kopitar tonight, our fourth line, we are confident they can shut them down. It doesn’t matter who goes on the ice, we have confidence among everybody right now.”

On teams in the east having difficulty playing California teams:

“It’s tough. For the last couple of years, all three of the California teams have been real good and real hard. They all play well at home, so it’s a nightmare to come out here now.”

On division games:

“You look at the standings and we have had a great year, but there are so many teams that are still bunched up together. It’s really amazing. You have to realize what’s up for grabs up every night.”

On Marty Havlat coming back:

“It’s great, it’s nice to see him back. He adds a lot of offense to this team and makes this team a lot deeper. I’m happy to have him back.”

BONUS CONTENT:

Tommy Wingles on overcoming the challenges they have faced thus far:

“Good teams find a way to win no matter what. We’ve passed a few early season tests this far, and we are happy with that. At the same time, it’s a long season and there will be many tests and challenges ahead, and we look forward to facing them.”

Wingles on playing the Kings tonight:

“We all know about LA. They play a heavy game, They have a lot of skill in their lineup with guys that grind it out but play in skill as well. Their back end is great and their goalie…everyone knows how good Quickie is. It’s going to be a tough match up tonight and we look forward to it.”

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