- Q. Alain, do you think your time in Vancouver helps you in terms of familiarity with this team?
COACH VIGNEAULT: Well, it’s definitely a team that I know real well. Played against them for seven years. Had a couple of playoff rounds against them. It’s a team that obviously has grown through the years. It has a real good balance. That’s why they’re getting another chance to compete for the Cup.
Alain Vigneault met with the media today prior to the Rangers flight to LA (Rangers):
- “right now for us…to put it quite simply, we are up against the team that won the Stanley Cup two years ago and just beat the defending Stanley Cup champions and they are without a doubt battle tested and we know what we need to do and if we want a chance we will have to bring our best hockey of the year, it’s as simple as that. For us it starts on Wednesday. We have had good practices and will have another one tomorrow and be ready on Wednesday.”
Alain Vigneault met with the media today following Rangers practice (Rangers):
- On potential opponents, “that last game against the Habs was our best game of the whole playoffs and it gave us a chance to move forward and compete for the cup but that is the hockey that we have to play because whoever we play, LA or Chicago, pick your poison, Stanley Cup Champs or Champs from two years ago so it will have to be our best.”
- “They are battle tested. They have both played on the big stage and won. Different styles . Obviously LA is bigger but both teams have a puck possession game that makes it hard to get it back. Different challenge but two good teams.”
- “It’s been a good ride so far but we still have work to do and we are looking forward to the opportunity.”
- Is it as sweet as you thought, “I knew that getting into the playoffs was going to be a challenge and once in there, starting from Philly and then Pitt and MTL that beat the best team in the league in the Bruins, that it was going to be a big challenge and it was. There was some momentum swings from game to game, some momentum swings in games and it made for a great night last night. We thought we played our best game in the playoffs last night and at the right time.”
Q. Coach, when you came here June 21st and I asked you if you had visions of being here in New York, and you said you saw the parade posters of that day. When that buzzer went off, what was that feeling for you tonight?
COACH VIGNEAULT: Well, we’re not there yet. I mean, we’ve given ourselves the opportunity to compete for the Cup. It was a great feeling tonight. We played, in my book, probably our best game of the playoffs. You know, we’ve got to give Montreal a lot of credit. I mean, they’re a good organization, and they played really hard. It was a tough series.
Q. Just curious, your reaction to the suspension that John Moore was given yesterday by the league.
COACH VIGNEAULT: Doesn’t matter. So I don’t have any reaction.
Q. Talk about Diaz, how he fits in there with Klein?
COACH VIGNEAULT: We have Diaz or Falk that are available to us tonight. Diaz has played a little bit of left side. When he has, he has been good. So we’ll make that decision come tonight.
Q. Coach, is he such a veteran, that he let it be?
COACH VIGNEAULT: I just gave him a quick Pat after the game, but Henrik doesn’t need to hear anything from me. He’s a veteran player. One of the best in his area, and I’m sure he’s going to be focused and ready for the next game.
Alain Vigneault met with the media (via the NHL) following the Rangers loss in game five:
Q. How do you explain what happened, particularly in the second, just the structure, I guess?
COACH VIGNEAULT: Well, it was, to say the least, a strange game. You know, we tie it up 1-1 in the first and couple minutes later they make it 2-1. They make it 4-1. We tie it up 4-4. Couple minutes, next scoring chance, they put it in the back of our net to make it 5-4. It was a different game than what we’ve had so far in this series, and we’re going back home.
Alain Vigneault met with the media following the Rangers morning skate today (via the NHL):
Q. Is Stepan a go for tonight?
COACH VIGNEAULT: There are a lot of things that have to happen for him to play tonight. We are going to talk to him this afternoon and see how he reacted to the practice. Nutrition, obviously, is an issue at this time, so later on today we’ll talk to our doctors and we’ll talk to him and we’ll see how it works out.
Q. Do you have any update about Stepan?
COACH VIGNEAULT: He’s made the trip with us like Dan Carcillo. The only player we’ve left behind in New York is J.T. Miller. He’s got an upper body injury, so he won’t be with us here for the next couple of days. That’s it.
Q. Is Stepan potentially available to you?
COACH VIGNEAULT: I couldn’t say right now. I have no idea.
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