January 03, 2005

Interview With The Coach

Killer had his post-w/e interview with The TEAM 1200/Dean Brown and Gord Wilson. Some notes:

Killer attended the funeral for Jeff Hunt's father today. It's been a very hard time for the family.

The trade, with Aitcheson and Todd for Staubitz and VanderVeeken, was apparently finalized on the way home from the Oshawa game.

Staubitz is a right-handed defenceman; a solid kid; good in his own end; he protects the puck; plays well; he's tough; looking for him to protect the goaltenders. Killer said that the team allows too many second and third chances.

Killer said the biggest help has been with the return of Reid - who looks like he hasn't missed a day, he's playing that well.

VanderVeeken is a tough right-winger; goes up and down; works hard; capable of putting the puck in the net, and setting them up; good in his own end too.

Toughness, according to Killer, is not someone going out and fighting all the time. Toughness is winning battles, finishing checks, grinding it out, playing hard hockey. He hopes that these guys will come in and play that way. Emotion, with desire and ability, will win you games.

When asked if he was finished - he said yes. He said that he just finished talking with a couple teams, and right now it looks like he's finished. But it depends on when the players get here and what they do, and what the team looks like. Also, he said that he will continue to watch to see if someone (who he's been watching), is surprisingly put up - and then you go with your gut feeling.

With Van Herpt, he came in and didn't upset anyone because the team was missing guys d/t injuries. Killer said Van Herpt's a hard working kid. Brad Bonello was sitting at home waiting for trade and he's made the team better. Tsimikalis, the trade was brought upon due to something they couldn't work out. Hulit has come in and is well respected and well liked by the team. Killer said that when players come in and work hard they will be respected by the team. Jarram has just started, but has worked hard so far.

On Aitcheson being traded for Jarram - The team was having trouble getting players to play the right side. With 8 d-men, 7 are left shots. Joslin has been playing right - and is doing a really good job. Killer said they were trying to get a little balance. So they brought Jarram in. Also, Staubitz is a right shot. Killer feels this will solidify the defence - players playing their natural sides. (Hah! I knew it was something like this - I posted earlier about the possibility that the problems the defence were having were related to the unnatural positions they were playing.)

Killer said that he just wants the players to play the game for 60 minutes. He said, "If you lose by playing hard and working, well that's all you can hope for as a coach. If I see our team playing well, but we still lose, well I'll be okay with it." He would like to see a little more emotion - see the guys sticking up for each other.

On Petruzalek and Kaspar at the World Juniors, he feels that Kapsar is sitting back a bit; not much offensive. Not seeing too much of Kaspar. Seeing more of Petruzalek.

On Team Canada, Killer said, "I'm just happy they're playing so well. The coaches have done a masterful job. I like the make-up of the coaching staff. Brent Sutter has laid it out - here's what we're going to do. Peter DeBoer is the next guy out of our league who's ready for the NHL. And I know that there are NHL teams lining up to talk to Sutter."

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