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Martin St-Louis compares his young team to a puppy that still needs training

John Tortorella has often spoken of his love for dogs. Martin St-Louis, one of the hotheaded head coach’s students now with the Philadelphia Flyers, also has a weakness for pitouses.

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At the end of his press conference with English-speaking colleagues in the hall of the team’s dressing room, St-Louis said that he had three dogs and that he had always had them in his life.

There is rarely a connection between what is described as man’s best friend and a hockey team.

But on the eve of the PK Subban party and the visit of the Nashville Predators, St. Louis a parallel between the two. He offered a long puppy analogy when asked if it was time for his players to take responsibility for their own actions.

“As a team, we are a young team. We haven’t played together for six or seven years, reminiscent of the previous greatness of the Lynets and Rangers. I don’t even have a year of experience as a head coach yet. We remain in childhood mode. »

“I’ve said it before, but we look like a puppy. You can train a puppy. He’ll be fine for two weeks, but you know he’ll eventually escape again with a little bit on the carpet. That doesn’t mean you don’t love your puppy. I understand that. I know we will escape to the mat again as a team. However, as a coach, we need to help our players keep them productive. They must learn to lie down and give their paw. Over time, we know that improvements will be made. Accidents will happen along the way, but that’s part of being young. You must have a plan in mind. We have to work on our culture and for the logo on the front of our shirt. »

In the first period against the Seattle Kraken on Monday, CH left a large circle on the mat, that of the Bell Center ice.

A call to pride

Since mid-December, CH has won just two of their last 13 games (2-10-1). Not to mention a desire to win at all costs, St. Louis recently showed signs of impatience.

“I feel that I gave the players enough freedom to express themselves. Freedom is important within concepts. But at some point there must also be responsibility that must be respected. To grow, you must also win. And winning is not a question about skill, it’s a choice. Victory is not faithful. You can do all the right things, but you still lose. As a group, we must move in this direction to build our culture. We must represent this logo with pride.”

The passengers

After the fight against the Kraken, St-Louis used the passengers’ expressions again. With this statement, he did not aim to strike a chord with his players.

“No, that wasn’t the goal,” he replied. Guys can take it however they want. They only have one person to answer to in their lives, and that’s the guy they look up to in the mirror. If you think you’re a passenger, you might be. There are guys who are sometimes too hard on them. They may think they didn’t play well, that they were a passer, but that doesn’t always mean that. To me, a passenger is a player who is not physically or mentally involved. Or both. You must always have one of the two elements. There are nights when you don’t have your legs, but that doesn’t stop you from being engaged. »




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