Mike Babcock addressed the media after his team’s 3-2 overtime loss to the Detroit Red Wings in the Leafs’ first game back from the All-Star break.
On the team’s performance:
I just think we’ve been in overtime with them the last three times. It’s kind of what you expected. I thought they were better than us in the first. I thought we had a better second and I actually thought we were doing better in the third. Our last shift or two in the third after we tied it wasn’t very good, and then I didn’t like our overtime that much. I don’t know… You guys are further away, so you saw it. I don’t know how smoothly executed the game was. It looked like teams had about a week off.
On the team’s struggling power play (0 for 5):
The bottom line, in the end, they got one. We won two faceoffs and didn’t clear. Our power play wasn’t able to capitalize, so that’s the game. You’ve got to win the specialty teams battle. I didn’t think our power play… Give them credit. I thought their penalty kill was real good. I didn’t think our power play was very good tonight. We changed it in the game, too, and maybe we shouldn’t have. Maybe we should’ve practiced it before we went to it. In the end, we didn’t score.
On whether the team hasn’t been in sync for several weeks now:
I don’t see that. I thought this last little bit we have been really coming, to tell you the truth. You can say whatever you want, but I don’t think that at all. I actually thought our guys worked and tried. Any time you’ve got as much time off as both teams did, you’re not going to be quite as smooth. We’ve just got to keep battling.
On the team’s struggles with zone entries on the PP:
That’s part of it, but I thought they did a good job tonight, too, though. We knew that going in. You’re right. We didn’t execute in that area as good as we could’ve. In the third period, when we had our opportunities, we just flat out didn’t do a good job on it. We’ll regroup and get ready for Pittsburgh.
On whether there are lineup changes to come for tomorrow’s game against Pittsburgh:
I haven’t had a chance to go through the game. I thought the puck was on the wall a lot for our team early. The forecheck was good for them. We didn’t make a lot of plays. I thought, as the game went on, we made more plays. In saying that, we’ll look at the game here tonight and we’ll get ready for tomorrow.
On the performance of the Marleau – Matthews – Marner line, which scored twice:
I thought that group was better. I am going to move things around tomorrow just for the matchup against Pittsburgh. We’ll see what happens.