Pre-Game 7: Darryl Sutter quotes from morning skate

Sutter-at-Press-Conference-2014-playoffsComments from Kings coach following the team’s morning skate at Honda Center, in advance of Game 7 vs. the Anaheim Ducks later today…

Darryl Sutter on pressure of a Game 7:

“Both teams won enough through the season and during the playoffs that if you can only play one game of a series, like you do doing the Olympics or some other sports, if it’s just one game. I don’t think there’s a whole lot of pressure. Heck, if you had a choice as a hockey player or as an athlete, to play one game, I don’t think there would be pressure, you’d say, ‘Yeah, let’s go play!’”

Sutter on if Willie Mitchell is an option for tonight after taking part in the morning skate:

“No. He’s skated once with the group in the last… He’s not an option.”

Sutter on home team’s not doing too well in Game 7s this post-season:

“I’m just going from my own [experience] of coaching in Game 7s, I want it in my house. I know we’ve been through both… I lost a Game 7 of a Stanley Cup Final on the road. And you always think, if there was maybe one shift there where you could have made the difference in a close game. And last year, we played Game 7 against San Jose at home, it was a 2-1 game. Me personally, I’d want Game 7 at our rink.”

Sutter on the Kings gaining confidence from playing 51 playoff games in the last three years:

“That’s a lot of playoff games when you play until the middle of June. Even last year, being in the Conference Final, because of the lockout and schedule, we still played until the middle of June. That’s basically how you prepare for the whole season and what goes on. It’s not just the playoff games. The coaches, were just talking about that – Johnny, Billy, and I – we’ve been through all of that. You look at the kids you bring up from the American league – everybody says it’s good experience for them, but we wish they had played more playoff games where they are. You look at Anaheim and Norfolk, those guys are still playing. It’s sort of the body of work. The more playoff games you play, the better players are.always in the long run. It might catch up to them, all those injuries, or not being able to train quite properly…but the teams that can consistently have that, that M.O. – there are teams still that are still playing and doing that – there’s something about it, for sure.”

Sutter on if that’s why teams need to turnover rosters nowadays, because of the wear and tear:

“I think if you look at the teams right now that are still playing, because you always go to the team you played last year… there is about a four, five, or six man turnover. That’s just the way it works with free agency and the way the rules are now. But, still, it’s an important part, putting players in. You have to do it. They have to learn how to do it. Both of these teams this series, if you think about it, the guys that are playing different roles that played last year, or the guys that watched it last year, or the guys that come through the organization, still the most important part of trying to go along in the playoffs is being able to put those guys in and make those little changes.”

[He then rattled of a list of names used as examples – including Tyler Toffoli, Tanner Pearson, Martin Jones, Sami Vatanen, etc.]

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