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Claude Julien: 'I think we could have had a better effort'

Posted by Steve Silva, Boston.com Staff  May 15, 2011 12:44 AM

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Bruins head coach Claude Julien spoke about the tough loss in Game 1, Tyler Seguin's performance, and more after tonight's game.

"I think we could have had a better effort," Julien said from the podium after tonight's game. "I think overall as a team, we’re definitely going to need to be better and get a better effort there. You know, rust was even on both sides as far as the time off, so you don’t want to use rust as an excuse, but I think the effort was something that we’re going to need more of. A better effort. And the other part too is the fact that when we gave them that 3-0 lead, it was certainly, again a little bit like in that Montreal series, I thought we gave them some easy goals and that was more our doing than it was theirs. Until that point, I thought we had started the game really well and had good momentum, but those three goals certainly set us back."

Julien spoke about the spirited play of rookie Tyler Seguin.

"He had a good game," Julien said regarding the young forward's performance tonight. "I thought when he had his chance, we took advantage of it and scored and obviously he had a lot of energy tonight and excitement in his game, so he was a good player for us."

More from Julien:

On the problems with the faceoffs and they were caused by Patrice Bergeron’s absence… Well I’ve said that before we even played the game that it’s so important to start with the puck. When you don’t win as many draws as you’re used to, you’re backpedaling a little bit and those lost draws, and we know how quickly they counter. It certainly didn’t help our game tonight.

On the Johnny Boychuk shot that Martin St. Louis blocked in the first period and if that ignited the Tampa Bay offense…
Well, maybe they can elaborate more than that play for us. The goals they scored certainly wasn’t because [Martin] St. Louis blocked the shot, it was more of our mistakes. Anybody who knows the game will see those mistakes on all three goals. They were pretty obvious.

On if Tampa Bay’s not using their typical “one-three-one” defense hurt Boston…
No, absolutely not. The one thing we know is that they use the one-three-one, they use the one-two-two, they vary, carry it, shifts, they do that all the time. Certainly I guess their goal is to try and throw us off, but we knew that coming into the series that they alternate and we were ready for that.

On what they will focus on as they regroup for next game so as to “not fumble under pressure”…
Well, I don’t know if we fumbled under pressure, again, it depends on how you want to look at those things. I think those mistakes are mistakes that are easily correctable or you can correct easily, I should say. Those are things that are again, uncharacteristic of our hockey club. Again, of the first three goals, I don’t feel that there was a good goal out of all of those things. A blind back pass, a backhand from a tough angle, and we lose a puck beside the net on our own. So is it really something that they did so well that created that? No, I think it’s more about us. Give them credit for pouncing on those opportunities and capitalizing, that’s part of the game. But you got to look at your team and say, “What can we do better?” I think we’ve got to make sure that we’re a little better with puck management and that wasn’t there tonight.

On how Chris Kelly played with Mark Recchi and Brad Marchand…
Well I mean we moved things around a little bit. When you are battling from behind and you are trying to get some goals and you end up killing penalties, we had power plays, it was back and forth, you move guys around a little bit. We had to do that, but again, you have to work with what you got and we have a couple of days here to look at the situations and if we want to make some changes we will have time to do that.

On Mark Recchi and Tyler Seguin switching places…
Just a switch, I think he played a couple of shifts with another line and stuff like that, it was just to make sure he got in the game. He skated well, he had a goal, had some opportunities, and this was an opportunity for him to go in and help us out. So that’s, with all the power plays and penalties and stuff that we had, it was important to move Tyler [Seguin] into some spots here and that’s all we did.

On if he considered using Tyler Seguin on the power play…
No comment.

On if filling Patrice Bergeron’s absence is easier on paper than in a game…
No, I think when you look around, as you know, hindsight is always twenty-twenty. We felt and we still feel that [Chris] Kelly was the guy that is going to step into that position here. And you look around and say ‘what else can we do with these things?’ And we moved the guys around a little bit. But you have to live with those loses and just because you lose a game doesn’t mean it’s because of that. I think I spoke enough about what we did in the beginning of the game that threw us off. If you take those three goals away then you have a different hockey game, and that’s basically it. So it’s the fact that we have Kelly in a certain place or that, I think it’s more of our own doing. And we just have to focus on what we have to do here in our next game to make it better. It’s as simple as that.

On having two days off between Game 1 and Game 2…
Well no matter what the situation will be, I think we make the corrections. So if we have a lot of time or a little time, we will make sure, as a coaching staff, we get prepared to make those adjustments and those kind of things and be ready. So right now we have a couple of days to do that so it gives us a little bit more time. But that’s what we’re paid for, to make the adjustments no matter what. If we were playing tomorrow we would make sure those adjustments would be made before tomorrow night’s game.

On Patrice Bergeron’s absence affecting more than one line…
Well it does but at the same time, what I am also saying is I thought the [Gregory] Campbell line did some pretty good forechecking and they kept the puck in the offensive zone a little bit. And those guys had some opportunities there. So you kind of look at your bench and you use what you can and some night some lines are going better than others. And [Rich] Peverley’s line was just okay tonight. Even if Tyler [Seguin] scored they are okay, so we just utilized the lines as best we could here to try and get ourselves back in the game. But they did a good job. They blocked some shots and they took away a lot of our scoring chances. And even in the second period I thought we had some real good scoring chances but we missed the net on those great opportunities. So those kind of things, you have to better yourselves with and you have to hit the net if you plan on scoring some goals.

On if the power play is better than the numbers suggest…
I thought our execution could certainly have been better, especially on those entries there. We had some rims and at one point the puck went past three of our guys. Those are execution, guys have to be better in those areas and we know that. If we do our job properly I think we are going to have success, but you need the execution. I think the plan for the power play is good and we know how good they have been on the kill and what we need to do and we had some opportunities too. You need the execution to be there and you need the killer instinct. When you have the chance you need to bury those things. And some thing with the loose pucks, you have to be first on those and make sure you get them and not the other team. So execution, killer instinct is something that needs to be better on our power play moving forward here.

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