Mike Babcock addressed the media after his team’s 3-2 overtime loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Monday night.
On giving up a 2-0 lead in the third period:
I don’t think we came out and sat on it at all. We outshot them 14-4 in the third and I thought did a lot of really good things. But we made a couple of mistakes — lost the faceoff and didn’t box out, line change where we just could’ve been patient. We were under no pressure and throw it out and they came in on an odd-man rush. In the end, that cost us the hockey game. It’s all part of the learning process. We’ve got to get better.
We also — I don’t know if you remember the play right at the end with about 16 seconds left — turned it over at their blue line to give them another go at it. That’s just part of understanding what it takes to win. You’ve got to win those faceoffs in those situations. You’ve got to make sure pucks are out and in.
Some nights, when you’re ahead, you get on your heels and the other team takes it to you. That wasn’t the case at all. It was actually the opposite way around. But they scored on their opportunities that we gave them.
On whether the team has made progress from last season in protecting leads overall:
I don’t know. I don’t think we’ve given up many leads, to be honest with you. Tonight, we lost the game but we didn’t get on our heels at all. That’s not really concerning. What is concerning to me, more than that, is we’ve just got to learn. You’ve got to learn what it takes and you’ve got to learn how hard it is to get points. That’s a free point we gave away.
Now, if you look at the big picture, we’re 2-1-1 in this segment. We’ve got to win to win the segment. But the reality is, you had it looked after and we let it get away. We’ve got to fix it.
On how Travis Dermott handled a slightly increased role in his second game:
I thought we were fine. I thought our D were fine tonight. I didn’t have any concerns with it. But I didn’t think, when Carrick played, he was bad, either. It just happens to be a rotation.
On whether Morgan Rielly is going to be frustrated at practice tomorrow:
It’s going to do you no good. It’s over with now. We’ve got to get to work and we’ve got a big game, and then we’ve got a break. I think we can get way better as a team. I tell the guys that all the time. I’ll tell them that tomorrow. I think there is a whole other level we’ve got to get to if we’re going to have success. I think Morgan Rielly has had a real good year. He made a mistake tonight.
On Frederik Andersen turning in another steady performance:
I mean, their goalie kept them in the game too, right? We were all over them in the third and their goalie kept it so that they could have a chance. We had lots of chances in the third, and good ones. But that is what you pay these guys for. They’re supposed to make the saves.
On what the team needs to do to find another level:
I don’t have time, but maybe on an off-day after practice I might be in a better mood to talk about that.