Tomas Tatar has already proven to be a valuable addition to the Colorado Avalanche.
After being moved to the top line in the second period, Tatar chipped in with two assists, helping the Avalanche take down the Chicago Blackhawks by a score of 4-0. Added late in the summer by GM Chris MacFarland, this game showed exactly what he can bring to the team.
Check out what Tatar and Avalanche head coach Jared Bednar had to say after the victory. Videos will return soon, as I’m traveling at the moment but have access to the audio.
Tatar on what it was like getting moved up to a line with MacKinnon and Rantanen:
”Good. I think it was the right time for me to get a chance there. I enjoyed it a lot. They’re great players. It’s fun to be on the ice with them. I feel like I’m starting to find my legs as the games go on. Unfortunately, I missed a good chunk of camp (for Visa reasons), and now I get to start to feel better. Get to live in a little bit with the system, and focus on playing hockey instead of thinking about what’s our system.”
On if MacKinnon called for the puck on the goal:
“Yeah, I heard him. Nate called for the puck, and I looked up, he was right there. These guys, they call for the puck, which is great. Makes it a lot easier, and they can score.”
Bednar on the top line changes:
“I thought (Tatar) was really good. I thought he made a lot of nice plays with MacK and Mikko. He got more involved, started using his skating, kind of seeing what he can do playing with top players. And I thought Drouin got much better too, after the switch.”
Bednar on the team defense:
“I liked the way we checked after the first, say, 10 minutes. I thought we were a little sloppy, maybe trying to make too much happen, not a direct enough game for me. That was probably the longest period this year that we got to our offensive rhythm of playing north and direct, putting pucks to the net, retrieving them, doing it again. When we check the right way, when we’re sitting up on teams in the neutral zone, we can turn pucks back and get some extended shifts.”
Bednar on the Avalanche starting 4-0:
“It’s great. I’m not expecting perfection early, so again, I’m pretty happy with what we’re doing. We’re finding ways to win. Goaltending has been phenomenal, penalty kill has been phenomenal, powerplay chips in tonight. We’re getting different contributors every night to help win games. It’s always better to be fine tuning when you’re winning than losing.”
On Alexandar Georgiev:
“He had a great year last year, in a year when you’re not sure what to expect. I think he’s excited, and knows that this is his job, and he’s taken a lot of ownership. He wants the net. Highly competitive guy, which is what we want in the net.”