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Stars-Wild Postgame Quotes

Here are some postgame quotes following Tuesday’s preseason game between the Dallas Stars and Minnesota Wild which the Stars won 4-1. These quotes are provided by Dallas Stars PR.

Stars Head Coach Ken Hitchcock

On tonight’s top line:

“I think [Tyler] Seguin has had twenty scoring chances in the last two games, or he’s been in on twenty.  That’s extraordinary.  He’s starting to compete in the offensive zone and getting better and better the way we want him to which I think is the big push.  We need him to win races to pucks, he sets the table while [Devin] Shore is the type of player that has got such a tremendous work ethic, he sets the table no matter what line he’s on.  He’s going to help anybody from a working standpoint.  Seguin is starting to grasp the competitiveness in the offensive zone, he’s already got it in the D zone.  He knows where to play and is very competitive in the D zone.  He’s very smart but he’s starting to learn to amp it up in the offensive zone. Puck protection, understanding how to create offense by buying some time, he’s starting to understand those things and he’s getting more and more scoring chances because of it.  He’s always going to be a great rush attack player.”

On what the young players have shown him:

“I think the ones that are here have all pushed for work.  I think we have some difficult decisions.  I get the cap world and the business part of hockey but I think we have some difficult decisions to make.  Whether players are going to play now or a month from now or six months from now, we know they’re going to play; it’s just when.  I think all of us recognize there is going to be a changing of the guard in some positions, it’s just when.  Every team goes through that.  There is a lot of teams that have good, young, emerging players and we just happen to be one of them.  We also benefit from these guys gaining experience last year when the team was so banged up because they got some significant play and it’s not new to them.  Even guys that came up got 18-20 games in and that’s significant.  I think that experience shows right now.  We’re going to get a much better look at what we’ll look like roster-wise on Saturday against a significant opponent.”

On the play of Devin Shore:

“He’s on the right side of everything.  He’s on the right side of pucks, he’s on the right side offensively, he understands concepts, he understands how to create offense from his own plays.  He’s a very smart player.”

On the play of Esa Lindell:

“I don’t want to say we take it for granted but it’s just a given.  He’s a zero-maintenance player.  You don’t worry about the maintenance and those are good to have.  You’ve got enough maintenance with a number of people, every team does, but when you have zero-maintenance players that you don’t have to talk to about being prepared or understanding what we’re doing, those are good.  He’s one of those guys and we don’t worry about him.  He comes the rink ready to play.  He’s also the perfect example of a young player who understands the importance of practice.  That allows him to be a really consistent player during the competition.”

Stars Forward Devin Shore

On accomplishments during preseason:

“I don’t know if I look at it as if I surprised myself or not. I think you do your best to be mentally tough and believe in your abilities and, through the hard work you put in during the summer, you earn your confidence and you take it and do your best out there. Sometimes it’s going to work out and sometimes it doesn’t. You just try to bring a good work ethic and a complete style and let the game come to you.”

On chance to play with Radulov and Seguin:

“It’s an honor. It’s no secret how talented those two guys are and how hard they work. I was trying to bring my competition level to match theirs and step in and try to help out, get them the puck and go to the net because they can do some pretty special things with the puck. They’re two fun guys to play with and I think that’s what the preseason is about; opportunities here and there and you try to make the most of them.”

Stars Forward Gemel Smith

On his experience during training camp:

“Really, all you can control is how hard we play and the effort we give. I really try not to even put my mind that far ahead, I just try to take it day by day. If [the Texas Stars is] where I end up, then I’m just going to keep pushing and working hard, hopefully I can get a shot full time”

On making an impression with the coaches:

“Not really. If anything it motivated me, just to become a lot stronger and faster. Like I said, all I want to do is work hard and if I don’t end up where I want to end up, to keep working hard and hopefully it happens.”

Wild Goaltender Alex Stalock

On giving up the goal early in the first period:

“They just came out and had a good opportunity early and found the back of the net. That happens – its hockey. There are sixty minutes in the game and whether it’s the first minute or the last minute of the game, I don’t think there is a more important minute out of sixty minutes. They ended up scoring in the first minute, grabbed the lead and just kept it going.”

On killing the 5-on-3 opportunity for the Stars:

“You feel good about your game anytime that when you have four guys on the ice, you can kill a five-on-three. That’s a big advantage in hockey with two extra guys. Our forwards did a great job and our d-man did great. They kept their big guys to the outside for the most part and didn’t have any backdoor chances, which is what you try to eliminate. That’s all you can ask for. Then, the goalie can make a save and you can move on.”

Wild Assistant Coach John Anderson

On slow start to the game:

“I think we made a mistake early and we weren’t getting pucks through and getting beat one-on-one, so it kind of set us back a little bit. When bad things happen in a game, it takes a little while to get going, but I thought we started to respond in the first period. The second period – if they’re better than us, they’ll beat us because they’re better than us, and that’s one thing. They outworked us in our zone in every aspect of the game, and it’s almost embarrassing. That’s what really irked me the whole game. Thank God we came out in the last period and at least got better, but the damage was already done.”