I know it’s a little late but here is an interview script conducted by ASAP SPORTS after the Los Angeles Kings first practice at Jobing.com Arena before Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals. This FanScript was taken from NHL.com:
An interview with:
COACH DARRYL SUTTER
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. Rob, you have been preparing and talking about this series for a
while. You’re finally on the road practicing in the building, it’s the day
before the game. Does it finally feel normal?
ROB SCUDERI: Yeah, I think I can’t speak for everyone, but just for
myself. It’s nice to just get back to the routine a little bit. While the
season is still going on, you want to keep it going on, you don’t want too
long a break.
It’s nice to have a bit of recuperation time. But after seven days,
I think we’re all pretty much ready to play.
Q. Willie, when you decided to sign with the Kings a couple years
ago you had offers from other teams. You saw a lot of promise in this team
in L.A. Obviously right now they’re living up to what you saw in this
WILLIE MITCHELL: Absolutely. You get older in your career, you want
to be somewhere where there’s a good group. Yeah, we spoke about that
before. I think it’s a great young team. We’re starting to play to our
ability. Obviously have a shot here. One of four teams left for a crack
at it all.
Enjoying it. It’s been a lot of fun. I think we’re seeing our core
group and our young players start to mature and that’s why we’re sitting
Q. Jarret, can you talk about the challenge you face with their net
minder, how you try to break through when a goalie is that strong?
JARRET STOLL: Yeah, he covers a lot of net. He plays big. He’s
very athletic, too. He’s obviously a good athlete. We’re going to have to
shoot as many possible shots at him, get second-chance opportunities, make
him work, make him move side to side. It’s going to have to be a pretty
good shot to beat him clean.
He’s pretty much like our goaltender. Everybody knows that. We have
to make it hard on him. Like any good goalie, make him work a lot, make it
tough by getting a lot of shots, be around the crease, get all three guys
ending up at the crease, you know, be hungry.
Q. Willie and Rob, can you both touch on the balance that you have
on the blueline. Everybody talks about Quick, rightfully so, but the
balance that is there.
ROB SCUDERI: I think each pair has their own chemistry. We had that
for a while. Since the pairs have been set like this, each guy understands
how to play with each other.
When you look almost beyond that, you can see we have a good mix of
different types of defensemen. Mitchie and I kill penalties, try to shut
down other top players. Then we have Drew, who’s my number one guy who can
pretty much do anything and do it very well.
We have some guys that can PK, some guys that can just do power play,
whether it be secondary or be on the first unit.
I just think it’s a good mix and a good group.
WILLIE MITCHELL: Same thing. He covered it all. I think we all
feel, I guess, really comfortable with each other, really trust each other
back there. For the most part we’ve had our pairings together for a long
time now. I think each pairing has a lot of trust for each other, the
ability to get the job done.
When you play in front of a good goaltender like we have, it allows
us to trust what we’re doing as well in front of him. When you do that,
you’re in a pretty good spot and you usually limit the other team’s
As a group, we collectively do that, like Rob said, through
committee, everyone bringing their own personal strength and identity to
our core. Hopefully we can continue to do that.
Q. Trying to get something through the net now, Tippett described it
trying to make it muddy in front of the net, mud winning out, do you see
that on film with these guys?
WILLIE MITCHELL: I think this time of year it’s just what it is.
It’s tough to get pucks in the net. They do it. We do it. You look at
the other teams left, everyone at this time of year is prepared to do
anything at all costs to limit chances on your own net and get in front of
This time of year, you talk to most teams, what do you do? Every
team that’s left, what do they have? Great goaltender. No one’s left
without a great goaltender.
You have to try to get pucks to the net or to traffic around the net.
From there that’s usually when you get the broken coverage, create some
second-chance opportunities. That’s how you’re going to have to score with
the great goalies that are left so far.
Q. (No microphone.)
ROB SCUDERI: I think it’s been more at a premium since we’ve had the
rule changes. A lot of freedom on the offensive players, a lot of talented
guys can get their shots off. Instead of hooking or holding them so they
can’t get them off, it’s put your stick in position and possibly get a
block. If you can’t get your stick on the puck, you’re trying to block the
shot. I think it’s a product of the rule changes more than anything else.
JARRET STOLL: I think good puck movement, good passing, slapping
pucks around in the offensive zone gets guys out of position. Every
coach’s emphasis is on lanes, lanes, lanes, making sure you’re in the
lanes. You don’t see a lot of shots being blocked anymore where guys are
sliding and laying themselves flat on the ice like eight, nine, 10 years
ago. You’re seeing guys up in the lane, it’s very hard to get it by them.
I think that’s maybe a big difference.
Q. About the balance on the defense. From a forward’s perspective,
is it almost to the point that it doesn’t matter what pair is on the ice
because there is that balance there, they’re all different, but they’re all
similar in a way?
ROB SCUDERI: That’s totally right. They all move the puck well.
They can all get up and down the ice and see the ice. When you’re out
there, up front, doesn’t really matter who is out there, just maybe if Drew
is out there, he’s jumping up in a play. If Marty is out there, and Slav.
As a core, we’re all told to do the same things.
We want to get everybody up in the play, everybody involved
offensively. They all got great shots back there, so that’s not an issue.
It’s a strong, strong group back there.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you.
Questions for Coach Sutter.
Q. Darryl, a week to watch lots of video. I know the teams are
different if for no other reasons the playoff journeys are different. What
do you expect tomorrow in Game 1?
COACH SUTTER: They’ve been a team that’s won at home early, first
games, so they got lots of energy in here with the crowd. It will be
awesome, but it will be tough early.
Q. With a few days between series, what did you most want to get
COACH SUTTER: Yeah, I think some of the guys are banged up. Get a
couple days. Especially two or three of the older guys. It was good. So
now it’s the reset button. You know, always when there’s time, doesn’t
matter if it’s regular season or playoffs, whatever it is, if you ever get
four, five days, you’re always concerned about the emotional level of the
group always. I’m sure they’re the same way as us.
Q. How important was it for you guys to come in here a day early,
get a practice in here, and do you think it enables your group to get back
to feeling like a playoffs series is about to start?
COACH SUTTER: I think it’s good, first off. But I think the most
important part of that is because we play an early game tomorrow, right?
You get guys that haven’t maybe practiced in this building or been on the
ice in this building, or not very often. That’s the most important part.
I don’t think it does anything for you in terms of preparation coming
in early, less than an hour over here. That was the concern. The most
important part is, is because it’s an early game tomorrow.
Q. Two of your defensemen were up here, Willie and Rob. They both
talked about balance on the blueline. How important has that been?
Everybody talks about Jonathan Quick. The balance you have in your three
pairs to enable you to get to where you are right now.
COACH SUTTER: Touch wood, we’ve been able to use three pairs. If
that’s what balance is…
Q. Darryl, is Phoenix a team that’s a little harder to target, maybe
one or two players, because they maybe have such balance scoring, not one
go-to line or guy?
COACH SUTTER: I think they’re similar to us. I still think they’re
led by Shane. That’s a huge part of it if you look at shots in the
playoffs. I think Vermette has three power play goals. I think they’re
led by their captain big-time up front.
Him along with those veteran guys is going to be huge in this series
to manage them or handle them.
Q. Darryl, the Predators admitted the first two games in this
building last series, they got away from who they were. What is your
message to your team?
COACH SUTTER: Well, I don’t think that we’ve gotten away from our
game for three or four months, so I can’t imagine it should change now.
I think the familiarity with being in the division is important, too.
Most of these guys have played against each other a lot. I think they know
how both sides are going to play. The coaching staff, that’s what we
expect out of our group, for sure.
They’re the home team for a reason, so…
FastScripts by ASAP Sports
The Los Angeles Kings seemed to match the desert dogs’ intensity in Game 1 and, like Coach Sutter indirectly stated, played like they were considered the under dogged 8th seed. Willie Mitchell and Rob Scuderi’s blue-line, blue-collared necessity to “get err done” is comforting in that the LA Kings have matured in to an identity of accountability. No one player is more important than the other despite the Media showering individuals with attention.
GO KINGS GO!