February 18, 2008

Interview with the Coach

Armchair Coach Monday once again with the Team1200 Over the Edge gang.

The discussion started with the game against London yesterday. The third period was their undoing and too much went wrong. The team certainly has to take advantage of every scoring chance, but let the forwards got to the net. But yesterday a defensemen (not named in the interview) got caught up-ice and it lead to an easy goal. Then a lost face-off resulted in another goal. Just too many mistakes. The momentum shifted to London and the Ottawa boys were unable to respond.

For the rest of the season, Killer is looking for some players to improve and show that they are ready to take on a bigger role or they will be sitting out. The return of Jason Bailey and Jon Carnevale may lead to some others watching rather than playing.

The best line for the last little while has been Methot, Kiriakou and Nesbitt who have been pretty consistent. The team needs two scoring lines…the other expected scoring line needs to get on with it.

Lots of kudos to Nesbitt who took a load of stitches in repairs on Friday both inside his mouth and on his face and came back to the game. With all the troubles on the right wing, Thomas has been working hard and double shifting at times. It was disappointing that his hard work was wasted in the loss.

Speaking of the right side, it has been quite the year for injuries on that side and it’s a challenge to adjust. It’s not just a matter of shifting someone else to that side.

On the subject of Logan Couture and whether he’s back up to speed, Killer thought that he had a lot of jump in the game yesterday (I thought I actually saw Logan getting physical too but I might have been imagining it). He skated pretty well but that whole line needs to get better results; they need a better two-way game.

As for Chris Perugini and the goaltending decisions for the stretch, Killer is not about to decide who will get the nod in the playoffs. It’s too early with something like 12 – 13 games left. Who ever gets hot will get the nod. It’s likely that both players will get starts this weekend.

Tough road trip ahead to Guelph, Erie and Brampton. It’s a tough trip but all the teams get these weekends (witness London’s weekend) so nothing unfair about it and the good teams succeed at it.

And that’s about all the key points I picked up in the chat. I expected a grumpier Coach Kilrea after those two losses but he seemed to be in a rather good mood….considering.

On a much more serious note, and not discussed during the interview, later today we learned the tragic news of the sudden death of Windsor Spitfire captain Mickey Renaud. The NOOF is about the best place to keep up with this news.

Words fail at this time to express one’s feelings. A life lost so young. Heartfelt sympathies to the family, team mates, friends and fans.

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