Thoughts in the moment:
We’re very disappointed. We got a great team, and we’re real competitive. Lots of heart and soul, and we never quit. I don’t know if we could have gotten another bad bounce today. We lost because we lost — all the credit to Stockton, 100 percent, they came into our rink and won Game 7 — but I thought the officials struggled the whole game. The goal is a goal. I’ve never seen that call in my life. (The referee) is really involved in the first period, then he puts (his whistle) away in the second. I’m very disappointed with that stuff. But we lost because we lost. I’m not blaming the ref for us losing. We didn’t respond. When we got that goal disallowed, it really crushed our team. We didn’t respond well enough to that situation, and you don’t have time for that. We fought like crazy. We do it every time. Our team battles to the end. Always. Always. So it’s pretty disappointing.
DId you see interference?
No. There’s no interference on that play. There was nothing. Our guy had the puck, there’s no whistle, we score, he calls the call. What are you going to do? The ref calls it the way he sees it. You’re not going to get the calls all the time, that’s the way it goes. I’m really disappointed at the whole officiating crew, but that’s the game. That’s hockey. Sometimes you don’t get the calls. They dump a puck in on the power play, it hits the stance, comes down, the guy scores. Our D’s going for the rim. The bounces were against us, and we lost because we weren’t good enough today. I’m not passing the buck here. It’s our fault. I want to make sure I’m really clear here. It’s my fault. Our team’s fault. But there’s a lot of things that went against us. It was really disappointing.
Were your players ready to start the game?
We were ready. We were all excited to go. We were nervous, but I don’t think we were soft at all. My team is one of the hardest teams I’ve ever coached in my life.
We had a little lull.
On Stockton’s three first period goals in 2:32:
We scored the goal, came back and scored, but we were still focusing on the one we didn’t have. And so our team reacted poorly to that. It really affected us. We got down, and I was hoping — I almost called a timeout, decided not to — and they had some energy and scored.