Bob Boughner: It’s tough to get pucks by Vasilevskiy

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Florida Panthers coach Bob Boughner breaks down Saturday's shootout loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning, saying he liked how desparate the team played but that it was just difficult to find a way to get pucks past Bolts goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy.

INTERVIEWER: Coach, a disappointing locker room where we're just in there. But there's got to be some encouragements as well. A lot of good things. A lot of offense generated. And good penalty killing, as well, in this game.

- Yeah. We did a lot of the good things that we talked about in the last few weeks. And I thought we executed. We came out ready to play. This is not an easy building, especially on a home opener. And I thought we controlled the first period. You know, and we were a desperate team. We just, we couldn't get one by Vasilevskiy. Early on. And the longer it went, you know, even our power play. I know we had five we didn't score, but we had some amazing chances. And you have to give him credit. He's a tough guy to put a puck behind.

INTERVIEWER: Jacob McDonald, special night for him scoring on his first shift, first shot. And I know up and down that bench, they were pretty excited.

- Yeah. It was so, so great to see him be a part of. And you know, we talked about him, how long a road he's had to get here. To get rewarded like that was nice to see. And I believe he was third star, I think, too. So, what a night for, for him and his family.

INTERVIEWER: Any update on Roberto Luongo going down in the second period.

- Yeah. He had some ice on his knee. And that's as much as I knew. I knew he couldn't come back. And they're going to reassess him now, I guess, and I'll know more tomorrow. But we got a few nicks and bangs out of this one. You know, we lost McKenzie early in the game as well. So, we had to shuffle our lines a little bit as we went through the game. It was a hard game on both sides.

INTERVIEWER: Vasilevskiy was basically the difference in his hockey game, especially with so many chances and when you were on the man advantage. What else did you see in this hockey game that you were encouraged by?

- Well, I liked our details, you know? And that's what I've been stressing. I think that this team is a fast team through the neutral zone. And I like the fact that we had some hard stands. And we squeezed at the blue line. We made them chip or dump. If you give them too much room in the neutral zone, so that was good.

The new D-zone things I'm talking about and working on everyday, I think, was really apparent in the first period, how we outnumbered a lot of puck piles. And we didn't spend a lot of time in our end. And they didn't get a lot of motion, as I've been talking about. So those things are really encouraging. But you know, individual play as well. I thought the Trocheck line had a lot of chances there. They got better every time we see them. So, and Reims came in and made some really good stops, and especially in overtime. He gave us a chance to get to that shootout.


- He's upper body. And he was trying to come back but he just didn't have enough strength. So we're going to reassess him as well in the morning.

INTERVIEWER: You guys had lost Luongo, you lost him last year. You've got Reimer back there now. You've got Hutchinson coming up. You have faith that they can carry the load for as long, whatever it is?

- I think that one of the biggest things we did this summer, and it's not too talked about, is the signing of Hutchinson, I think. You know, we knew that was an area that we had to have some depth in. I think that he's got NHL experience. He's going to come up, him and Reimer, you know, are going to share the load. And that's what, it was a good move for us in the summer. You know, I don't know how serious Lou is or not, so hopefully that's not going to be a long term thing. But Reims has been put in this position before and he's answered the bell.

INTERVIEWER: The five forewords on the powerplay--

- I knew you guys were going to ask me that.

INTERVIEWER: No, no, no, no. It seemed like--

- I'm kidding.

INTERVIEWER: The puck kind of got tangled up back there.

- Yeah. It was a bad bounce, actually. It was a bad bounce. You know, Troch was right in the area. And he was reading that it was coming around the boards. And it hit the ref's skate and it popped out. And no matter if I would have had two defensemen or not out there, with a bounce like that, I think, that it would have been a two-on-one.

And you know, and again, they got a bounce on that. I think-- what did it hit, Reimer or Barky or something. So, you know, it is what it is. Any time you're going to go five forwards, you'll play with a little bit of fire. But I loved that we generated a lot of chances. And you know, it is what it is. I mean, we had a shorthanded breakaway as well.

INTERVIEWER: You guys talk about limiting chances in shots on goal. It seemed like you did that. 4 in the first, 1 in the first ten minutes of the third. Seemed like Tampa Bay, as good as they are--

- Yeah. We had a lot of guys play hard. And we play well in our own end. And you know, that's one of the things that was most encouraging. So we've been working on that since day one. And it's getting better. And hopefully, that's going to win us a lot of games.