Rick Kowalsky Post-Game Chat

It was just me asking the always gracious Trenton Devils head coach Rick Kowalsky questions after the game tonight, which is always rough for both of us after a loss.  I don’t want to ask him questions about how badly his team played, and I’m sure he doesn’t want to deal with having to answer them.  So, before we get started, I would like to make sure I publicly thank him for always being good enough to answer every question I have.

Now with that said, here’s how things went…

Mike Ashmore: There really isn’t too much I can say after a game like that…do you feel like this is a low point for your team this year?

Rick Kowalsky: “Well, geez.  Yeah.  You lose Coutu in the first five minutes, and we were already down to five D.  We took Kell and played him on defense.  He’s out of position, plus it takes away our depth up front where we only have one natural centerman anyway in Tony Zancanaro.  But to come off that trip and play the way we played and to come out…I don’t know if we were tired, I don’t know if we were jet-lagged, I don’t know what it was, but that was a terrible hockey game.  There was a lot of guys, I don’t even know if they broke a sweat tonight.”

Ashmore: When you come into a game with 11 forwards and five D, how does that change what you’re able to do out there?

Kowalsky: “Well, it’s a little tougher to get the forwards in the usual rhythm.  The NHL and American League can play four lines, but here, you’ve got to rotate a centerman or whatever.  But right away, we went to ten forwards anyways with Trevor going to the back end.  We talked about our forwards getting the puck deep and playing in their end, and we did for a bit of the first.  After that, we were just sloppy.  We looked tired.  I don’t know what it was, whether they were tired or not, that’s not an excuse.  You’ve got to come out, you’re going to have nights where you’re tired.  We made some strides on that trip and now we just took another step back, which we can’t do.  It’s going to catch up with us.”

Ashmore: It seemed in the first two periods especially, the team was really flat.  Did you say anything to these guys between the first and the second?

Kowalsky: “Well, I thought we started to get away from things.  Guys turning pucks over and guys trying to beat guys one-on-one in the neutral zone.  I didn’t think we moved the puck very well.  You get frustrated and just get off our game for no apparent reason.  After the second, it was a two goal game, and we’d scored a lot of goals lately.  But guys didn’t want to…they buckled down defensively and played hard, and guys didn’t go to the areas we needed them to go to.  Guys didn’t get any traffic in front of Murray tonight.  We had six shots or five shots in the second period, and that’s not enough, at home anyways.  We had 40 shots in one of the best team in the league’s building last week.  Again, we don’t have everybody going.  When we have everybody going and we’re skating, we’re going to compete with every team in the league.  But when we’re not, and there’s passengers…and there was a lot tonight…”

Ashmore: Was there anyone in particular who stood out to you in that sense?

Kowalsky: “I just thought for the most part, guys weren’t skating.  I thought the only guy who skated tonight, honestly, was Ryan Ginand.  He was our best player on the road.  Other than that, guys…there’s just not enough there. Guys not competing.  Guys not skating.  We were hoping for things to happen, hoping for the puck to bounce our way, and it never did.”

Ashmore: So what do you do tomorrow in practice to try to change things for Friday?

Kowalsky: “Well, I’ve got to watch the tape first, as painful as it may be.  Watch that again, and then we’ll see.  Maybe Akeson gets in on the weekend.  You would expect after that performance, guys would be a little ticked off on Friday.  This is a big weekend at home for us, Friday and Sunday.  These are huge games for us.”

Ashmore: Any word on a sixth defenseman?

Kowalsky: “Pender was suspended, so he’ll be back, but that still may leave us with five.  We have to see on the status of Justin here past tonight.  I don’t know as far as Andy Thomas (coming back).”

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

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11 Responses to “Rick Kowalsky Post-Game Chat”

  1. Shtikl Says:

    Today’s ECHL Transactions for Trenton:
    Add Andy Thomas, D returned from Lowell (AHL)
    Delete Jon Howse, F transferred to the 21-day IR
    Delete Chris Poli, F transferred to the 21-day IR

    Reading dumped Max Taylor, worth snagging him?

  2. titans04 Says:

    Taylor is damaged goods he’s missed the whole season with concussion issues. We already have a guy that’s always hurt, unfortunately.

    Sounded like Akeson may return tomorrow.

  3. Shtikl Says:

    Toledo dumped Rich Jondo, he’s a warm body that plays D, played a couple games for the Rockhoppers last year, 4 goals and 16 assists in 49 games with 93 PIMs… Not ECHL, but maybe worth more than our buddy Mr. Empty Roster Space?

  4. titans04 Says:

    Dust off Tim Judy and he comes in as the best defenseman on the roster.

  5. titans04 Says:

    check this out it would make sense if the reported trade happens and Oduya is part of it.

    02/05/2010 Andy Thomas (D) Trenton DEL Recalled from loan by

  6. titans04 Says:

    Bergfors, Oduya, Cormier and a 1st round pick.

  7. Shtikl Says:

    Yeah, confirmed by Gulitti too. Gonna miss Bergi, hope he does well. At least he’ll be with Anssi Salmela, they can remember what it was like to be in Low Hell.

    Although I’ll miss the kid, he was already gone. And Patrice Cormier didn’t spend much time in Lowell. Considering the guys we *could* have lost to this trade, a whole handful at a time, it doesn’t seem so bad.

    But the trades will go on. There’s a freeze between 2/12 midnight and 2/28 midnight, and then trades can be announced again a second after midnight 3/1 until 3PM March 3rd. Given the way the NJ-Dweebs have been playing lately, and the need to replace Oh-do-ya somehow or other, I don’t know what’s gonna happen.

    At least youse got Andy back. Nice if you got a couple other players to shore up the team, but you know winning games is the farthest thing from ChrisLam’s mind…

    ‘Scuse me while I go mourn Nick.

  8. titans04 Says:

    Anssi Salmela is part of the deal coming back according to his agent. So a wash on defense and at forward body count wise.

  9. Shtikl Says:

    Yeah, that detail’s been added. Wonder if he’ll stay in Joisey or come back to Lowell. Not sure he’s an improvement on Oh-do-ya, but we’ll see.

    The thing I remember most about Salmela is, the PieRats fans will certainly never forgive him for his dirty hit on Mike Funk 12/6/08 that ended Funk’s 2008-09 season with a (third) concussion. Death threats posted by a bunny in a blog called SabreChaser…

    The shame of that is, the guy’d been out a month for a previous (second) concussion suffered opening day of Sabres training camp 2008; his first as an AHLer was 1/25/08 playing for Rochester against Lake Erie. Oh, and since Salmela’s hit, Funk took ANOTHER high hit while playing for ‘Toba, 12/7/09 in Austin, and his 2009-10 season is over because of that concussion. Maybe it’s time for him to do the Steve Young and find another job while he can still function, poor d*mned boy.

    Anyway, maybe with Portland hating Salmela and Worcester hating Magnan and everybody else hating everybody on the L-Dweebles roster for various and sundry things they’ve done since conception… might be a difficult couple months. So ‘scuse me again if I’m not sure where Salmela’s going to be just yet.

    And don’t figure to get Murray back tomorrow.

  10. hockeyfan02 Says:

    Whatever happened to Kory Nagy? Does anyone think he will be sent back to trenton?

  11. tdevils Says:

    Nagy’s in Lowell. Doubting he comes back, but like Kevin Garnett, anything is possible…

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