Behind The Bench: Jim Schoenfeld and Mike Sullivan Join The Show

  • John Tortorella and Mike Sullivan start the show since. Mike Keenan is not in this episode
  • Sully says that he is thrilled to be on the show (sarcastic) but that he loves to talk hockey with Torts. They drive in together and Sully likes to think of it as a father/son relationship (joking).
  • Torts coached Sully in Phoenix when he was an assistant coach. Sully says that Torts is the same guy now that he was then and that Sully likes the way that Torts does things as a coach.
  • One of the keys to the team, Sully says, is that the top guys aren’t treated any different and there is one standard for all players.
  • Torts says that three coaches, him, Sully and Jim Schoenfeld do everything that relates to the team together and that Torts likes when Sully and Schoeny talk during practice. He says that it’s beneficial for the team to hear a different voice, but relay the same message.

  • On Henrik Lundqvist, Torts says that his focus is the key. Torts thinks that Lundqvist can be better than he is now and the opportunity to do that will come in the playoffs.
  • Marty Biron allows Hank to be able to work harder in practice which is something that he hasn’t been able to do before.
  • Sully says that Torts trusts his assistant coaches and that means a tremendous amount. All of the coaches express their opinion even if it’s different than how Torts thinks.
  • John Mitchell is profiled and says that the strength of his game is protecting the puck and making plays.  Torts likes his wrist shot and the job he does along the wall. Mitchell talks about understanding his role and wanting to do the little things.
  • Torts says that he didn’t know who Mitchell was and that he was told he was a top guy in the AHL at the end of last season.
  • Mitchell has done everything that has been asked of him according to Torts and he was surprised by his offensive skill. “If he doesn’t hurt us defensively it allows me to see what he has offensively.”
  • Brandon Dubinsky is mic’d up and celebrates like crazy when he beats Hank in practice.
  • Torts says that he does a lot of 5 on 5 video before practice and that Sully runs the drills on the ice. Schoeny will warm them up and all three are involved and talk about what needs to be worked on.
  • Sully says, “We are trying to create a team that plays with tempo and if we want to play with tempo, we need to practice with tempo. We try to condition our team to play fast”
  • Torts goes into the film room to talk about teaching the defense and blocking shots. He runs through the tape and he chuckles every time he shows a player block a shot. He loves that everyone sacrifices their body to block shots
  • Jim Schoenfeld joins the show and Torts starts chirping him.
  • On blocking shots, Schoeny talks about paying attention to details and when teams set up, you need to pay the price.
  • There is a point of no return with every shot and the players need to time it and try and be as big as they can be when blocking the shot
  • During games, Schoeny watches from upstairs in sends info down during the intermissions.
  • When asked about the length of the schedule, Torts says that he thinks it is too long, He thinks the brand of hockey would be at a higher level if the schedule is shorter
  • On Gaborik, Torts says that he is a pro and that Gabby knew of his struggles last season and he wanted to be better starting since the exit meetings last season.
  • Schoeny says that it’s a game of battles and renewed determination for Gaborik. Gaborik has made an effort to win in all aspects of the ice.