Colorado head coach Jared Bednar said his team failed to execute under pressure in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup final, in what he described as Tampa's best game of the series.
- What did you think was the biggest difference between tonight's game and, let's say, game one, and then just your overall thoughts on Darcy and what went into the decision making to pull him?
JARED BEDNAR: Well, I didn't love our execution tonight. Goals against kind of similar to game one. I felt like we didn't make them earn a couple of those. And then we didn't win a lot of the touches that we won in game two, for certain. Like wings on the walls. They air-mailed a lot of pucks out into the neutral zone. Game two, we came up with all of them.
We were sitting right on top of great reloads, and we came up with most of those pucks in transition. And tonight, seemed like they came up with them and came in our end. We had a couple of bad reads, a couple of turnovers. I just felt like the goals that we gave up, we just honestly didn't make them earn it.
- We'll stay, front right.
- Jared, following up on that, what will go into the decision about who starts in game four?
JARED BEDNAR: Same thing I always put into the decision.
- What's your confidence level in Darcy right now?
JARED BEDNAR: Well, I didn't think he had-- he didn't have a good night. Neither did our team, so again, we win as a team, lose as a team. And you can group him in with everybody else. Just weren't as good as we needed to be.
- Front left.
- Touching on what you were talking about, not letting them earn the goals that they got. Is it almost-- not that I would say better, but is it almost nicer to know that you can look at the film and just correct a few mistakes to have a better game? Or how do you go about reviewing this?
JARED BEDNAR: Certainly that's what we talked about after game one. We thought we had a really good game. I thought we did some good things tonight. There were some things that I really liked from our group. Wasn't consistent enough, but the execution and some of the turnovers, like we gave up one on an easy turnover, had good numbers back in the zone.
We turned it over, ended up in the back of our net. They executed quickly on our mistakes. But [INAUDIBLE] we had two on the rush coverage right away, had a turnover, had a missed coverage where they found F3 all alone in the slot where we lost a wall battle. Some of those things in the first couple of games we were really good at. So we'll look at it and crack it, no question.
So I think it's on us. They played well. They played hard, no question. We knew they would. But we got to be a little bit better than that.
- On the left side, [? Guillaume. ?]
- Hi, Jared. What did you think of the delay when they asked for a review on Nichushkin's goal in the first period? What did you make of the delay that they were allowed, before--
JARED BEDNAR: It was long. I don't know what else to tell you. It's probably three times the length we normally get.
- Stay on the left side, Ken.
- Jared, obviously Nathan MacKinnon is generating a lot of scoring chances, but hasn't been able to get one in this series. How much better equipped is he to handle that, knowing-- like you said earlier in the series-- that he doesn't have to carry it all on his shoulders? And maybe if he keeps getting the volume that it's eventually going to come for him?
JARED BEDNAR: Yeah, I think much better. The last thing you want to do is get frustrated, especially if you're getting opportunities and creating opportunities. Eventually it will come. You don't have any choice as a player but to stick with it. You're doing the right things, you're creating chances, you're helping your linemates create chances. You just got to stick with it and keep going. Eventually you'll break through if the volume is there and quality is there.
- Take a few more for Coach on the right side.
- Coach, already looking forward, what are the main points for your team for the next 48 hours prior to game four?
JARED BEDNAR: Regroup, look at the mistakes we made, talk about how to correct them, look at some of the adjustments they made, what we feel is really important to our game within the adjustments that they made. Some of them are obvious to me, already, as the game went on.
And then where I thought-- one of the big things is I thought-- not that we didn't compete, because I liked some of our compete tonight, some of the things we did-- but I think we had an advantage when it came to the competitive spirit in game one and game two. And tonight, they had it.
They played with a little bit more desperation. I thought we had a pretty good start. But you got to be able to, again, clean up some of the things that we didn't do well in this game. And that kind of gave them life. And then Vasilevskiy made some big saves. I thought we had some good opportunities when the game was tight. Early on, he made some big saves on. So a play here or there can be the difference in the hockey game.
- We'll do one more question. Back right.
- Jared, you knew Tampa Bay was going to come back and be desperate, as you just mentioned. Was that more of the team that you had expected going into the series? The team that's won back to back titles now?
JARED BEDNAR: Yeah, I thought they were good. You knew they were going to come. It's an important game. And at times, I really liked the way we handled it in some of the things we did on the offensive side of it. But the execution under pressure tonight was not great. So I think we had some plays to make that we didn't make.
I think on some of the entries, they pushed us a little bit. We got a little cute with the puck, where I thought in game one and game two, we weren't. We were just moving. And if we didn't have anything, we'd put it in behind their D and go get it. Willing to do that work, and not getting stubborn. So I would say yeah. I think, obviously, that was their best game of the series. And it wasn't ours.