Recap: Alain Vigneault’s Comments Yesterday

VigneaultFollowing practice in LA, Alain Vigneault, via MSG,  met with the media:

  • On sending down JT Miller, “In talking with both Glenn and Jeff about our numbers situation, we just felt that him being such a young player that he needed to play and having two extra forwards didn’t make sense. We are playing against LA and SJ, two big teams so I knew I was going to put Arron in the lineup sooner than later so we just felt that it was better to send him to Hartford to play some games, he played today and I heard he scored two goals. Real good start for him.”
  • On his game against Phoenix and whether he was over matched, “not necessarily, it was more of a numbers game and at the start a lot of veteran guys will get a longer look, a longer opportunity. Our numbers, we have 13 healthy forwards and I didn’t want 14. I wanted the kid to play and cap wise it was the right thing to do.”

  • Is Asham in the lineup because of the opponent or wanting to see him, “combo of both. We are playing against one of the biggest teams tomorrow, a team that won the Stanley cup two years ago. A team that rolls four lines, has great size up front and on D. Arron is one of our more physical players and we will put him in the lineup.”
  • On a minutes limit for Callahan, “I’ve made predictions before that I was going to ease someone in but once the game is there and if the guy looks good and in his case and in Step’s case, both of those guys will have to be played in to game shape. It’s a different form of conditioning, a different intensity from practice. When playing there are things at stake, two points and we will play them into shape.”
  • On Marc Staal on the PP, “I like his shot and I like the fact that he can sneak into the right holes and areas and make the opponents pay. With Brad we have a guy who can shoot and pass and with Marc it’s a PP that has scored some goals.”
  • On being back in LA, “we have had some tough battles in the past against LA. Being here, it’s just a practice facility, their rink is a tough environment.”
  • On coming from the West and now being back in the West, “what it does for me is the teams we are playing, I know. As far as preparing our team, I know what is coming. I don’t know the east yet and it’s a good thing we haven’t played them yet.”
  • On Arron Asham and playing for his career, “Arron and I had that discussion before the season. He is at the point now in his career where he wants to be in the NHL as long as he can and contribute. He is one of our oldest players and he is fighting to stay in our lineup and to stay in the NHL. He was put on waivers and no one picked him up, so you have 30 teams that have passed on him so now he comes into the lineup and hopefully he can play well for us.”
  • On Benoit Pouliot, “What we have seen in spurts is a highly skilled, quick player that has had some good scoring chances. If he wants to stay there he needs to chip in, so he is getting that opportunity and should grab it. Right now our assessment of our players is really limited. We had the 4 games in 5 nights, we had one game, 3  days in between and now we are going to play 4 games in six nights. Now we are getting into hockey mode and it should be real good for our group.”
  • On the goalie schedule this week and Marty Biron, “In the big picture I would say yes, in the small picture I would say that Hank is playing tomorrow and then we will take it from there.”