Ontario outlasted Stockton last night 2-1. Once again, Ontario Reign Insider did a thorough job of collecting post-game quotes, including a couple gems by Mike Stothers, but here's some exclusive stuff from Jordan Samuels-Thomas and Sean Backman:
Jordan Samuels-Thomas, on his success since being called up:
Honestly, I'm just trying to play my game. I think if I'm winning all my 50-50 battles, controlling the play down low, and hanging out in front of the net, good things happen when you're around the net. My teammates are getting the puck to the net or finding me when I'm in the slot. So it's a combination of everything.
Samuels-Thomas on how his game has grown from last year:
Oh yeah, I feel like a 100 percent better. I feel just the game's slowed down a ton. I feel confident. I feel like I could be the player that I think I can be. And playing in this system has helped out a lot too. The structure here fits my game. They like heavy-style players. Playing a structure that fits your game always makes things a lot easier.
Samuels-Thomas on his scoring potential:
Yeah, I've scored at every single level. I think if you've been able to score, you should be able to score. But I understand that sometimes playing the pro game, there's a bit of an adjustment. I'm in a different role this year than I was last year, so that helps out too. And obviously, this team is a very good team, so it's definitely easier getting opportunities.
Sean Backman, on whether or not he's doing anything different to spur his recent goalscoring splurge (four in the last six, after zero in the first nine):
Not really. I'm just trying to go out there and work as hard as I can. Get pucks to the net. Put myself in good situations where I'm going to get the puck. So I guess they're just starting to go in for me, which is a good thing.