Alain Vigneault met with the media today following the Rangers flight back from LA (via the NHL)
Q. Is there a certain message to the players now?
COACH VIGNEAULT: Our guys are going to be real focused tomorrow. We need to hold serve. We’re back in our building. We’ve played some good hockey. We might feel that we deserve a better outcome than what we have right now, which is trailing by two games.
But it doesn’t matter. At the end of the day we got to take care of business tomorrow, and that’s what we’re going to do.
Q. You were on the other end of a 2‑0 series three years ago. Can anything from that experience help you here?
COACH VIGNEAULT: You know, other than stats that you can throw at your guys. Tomorrow is as close as a ‘must’ game as I think you can have. Till you face elimination, that’s as close as we can get.
There’s a lot of good things we’re doing on the ice. There’s a couple things we need to clean up that we’re going to address tomorrow with our group.
For the most part we’ve given ourselves a real good chance, and that’s what we’re going to try to do tomorrow.
Q. What is it going to take for you guys to get back in this thing?
COACH VIGNEAULT: Win tomorrow.
Q. When you have a long flight after a difficult loss, is it a unique opportunity to assess as a team?
COACH VIGNEAULT: No, not really. Today was just a five‑and‑a‑half hour flight home for guys to rest a little bit, do what they need to do to reenergize. They’ll go home tonight and spend a little bit of time with their family and come in tomorrow and it’s game time.
Q. Any update on Talbot?
COACH VIGNEAULT: No.
Q. Just to get the crowd back, are you expecting that lift?
COACH VIGNEAULT: It’s the biggest game New York has had here in 20 years. I think our fans are as excited as we are.
People might be disappointed that we’re down by two, but it wasn’t certainly by lack of effort. We played nine periods of hockey. We played some real solid hockey in there. We’re against a real good team. We know the challenge. We need their help to get back in it tomorrow.
Q. Is it a different challenge when you look at the games and you see how close you were versus had you played two games and you weren’t as competitive?
COACH VIGNEAULT: Well, I would say to you, both games, other than one period, I was pretty happy with how we played.
I know they came back from a two‑goal deficit last night, but their third goal, you can look at it any way you want. At the end of the day, that shouldn’t have been a goal in my opinion. They got three chances in the third, if you count that one. Two of them went in. We were a little bit unlucky.
We were playing real solid. Sometimes stuff like that happens. I believe it’s going to even out and I believe we’re going to win the next game.
Q. Do you think that third goal will have a lingering effect?
COACH VIGNEAULT: I mean, we had that third goal, right before they scored the winning goal in OT, a lot of people think we should have been on the power play. They flicked the puck out of the zone. Instead of having a faceoff in the offensive zone, we probably should have had a faceoff going on the power play. We didn’t.
Those are things that happen in playoff hockey. Usually they even themselves out, and that’s what we’re going to hope moving forward.