Mike Babcock addressed the media after his team’s 2-1 loss in Vancouver to end the Western Canada road trip.
On winning two of three on the Western Canada road trip:
Well, I’m greedy. The rest didn’t matter. We were playing tonight. We didn’t get ready and the first period cost us. Obviously, we spent the whole night playing catch-up. You know, we had a lot of opportunities and their goaltender was good and they made some blocks and all of that. In saying all of that, we weren’t ready to go at the start. You play catch-up hockey and it’s usually losing hockey.
On Auston Matthews’ comment that it’s long past the time for lessons in terms of starting on time and playing a complete 60-minute game:
It’s one of those things. There was no morning skate or nothing this morning, obviously, and we’ve shown how we handle that. The bottom line is, if you want to be a real good team, you’ve got to play every day. You’ve got to play every night and you’ve got to start on time if you’re going to be successful. Nothing wrong with our effort in the second and third with those details and how we played, but you’ve got to start on time. You spend the whole night giving away two points just because you didn’t get prepared.
On trusting the team to handle a day off and no morning skate:
Obviously, just with the way the schedule is set up, that’s the way it works sometimes. We’ve just got to do a better job of that. That’s all there is to it.
On the team’s effort in the final 40 minutes:
I thought we pushed. It’s just working and skating and playing right. We play right and we have a chance to win most nights. I’m not trying to take anything away from Vancouver. I thought they played hard. Real nice ceremony to start the night, and all of those things. They were ready and we weren’t.