Recap: Alain Vigneault pre game comments

Alain Vigneault6:50PM: Sam Rosen with Alain Vigneault:

  • On building off of Yankee Stadium “we played real solid hockey in challenging conditions as far as the ice surface. I felt that we handled it well, there was a lot of hype and people who wanted to be at those games and I thought that all the teams played strong games.”
  • On tonight, “tough opponent, dynamic forwards and we will have to defend well, have numbers and one thing we are doing better is transitioning and getting back and then from there countering and using our quickness and speed to go on the offense.”
  • Are there plays you couldn’t make at Yankee Stadium, “the ice was a little challenging and a lot of times you had to skate the puck instead of passing and I am hoping that we will be able to move it quicker and if we do that we will be using one of our best assets which is our speed.”
  • Will it be warmer tonight, “it should be.” (smiles)

5:27PM: Alain Vigneault met with the media before the Rangers and Islanders game (Rangers Report):

  • Is Dorsett cleared to skate, “I think he is getting his x-ray during the game.”
  • On Mats Zuccarello’s year, “he is a real intense, competitive player, not real big size wise but plays a real smart game and plays to his strengths. He has quickness, moves the puck well, goes to the tough areas and I would have to say since the game we sat him out he has been our most consistent offensive player. He uses his speed and is real competitive.”

  • On a new game plan being back inside, “both teams had to keep their games simple, the puck was bouncing quite a bit and it was hard to make tape to tape passes. Both teams were trying to skate the puck up or once you get to the red line put it in an area where they couldn’t get to it and then play in the other team’s zone. We know that we are up against a real tough opponent, their top line is 1-2-4 in scoring since December. It’s a tough game and we are looking forward to it, we are ready to play and it’s time to play….indoors.”
  • Same lineup, “yes.”
  • Are you getting more from Marc Staal, “I think Marc is playing some of his best hockey since I have been here and what I mean is that I always know that I can depend on Marc defending, stick, getting in the shooting lane but I have found lately that he is making that good first pass or jumping up in the play to make a 3 on 3 a 4 on 3 and he is getting up there quicker and seems to be, I don’t know if it’s more assertive offensively but the defensive part of his game, I have always liked that. I have seen more offensively from him right now.”
  • “It’s tough for me to say. I know he hasn’t played a lot in the two years prior. The one thing with Marc, he is a real good person. He talks and looks you in the eye, always makes a lot of sense. I always know that he is putting his best foot forward, thinking about the team all the time and I always have a lot of time for players like that.”
  • On coaching against one big line or a balanced team, “I know they have one great line and their other two lines, second and third, both have some good offensive potential and their fourth line has energy, one of the players that hits the most. It’s a challenging four line offensive team that we are playing against, they are one of the best teams at coming back when the other team has the lead, it’s a real big challenge for us tonight.
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