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Ontario Reign Practice Quotes: Stothers, LoVerde

Stothers tells us, "Hugs usually work better" + new All-Star LoVerde talks about last Sunday's moment of doubt

Sheng Peng

Stothers, on the adjustment players like Forbort have to make returning to the AHL after an extended NHL stay:

Absolutely, yup. It's not easy. Everybody would think, well, you come back from the NHL, and you're just going to light it up or play great and dominate a game. It's far from the truth. It's actually harder to play in the American League than it is the NHL, in the fact that, everybody in the NHL is an elite player and in the position they're supposed to be and making the plays they're supposed to. Here, we're close, but you know what? There's still some hiccups. It's hard. There is a period of adjustment. So yeah, you're going to see a period of adjustment for I would assume Kempe. And I would certainly expect the same for Forby.

Stothers, on if last year's Calder Cup-winning Monarchs had a moment of doubt like the Reign had last Sunday:

Last year, I think, we had [been] shut out in back-to-back games at home...we were discouraged then. But it was like, 'Okay, well, it's a weekend.' So you chalk it up to a tough weekend. You chalk it up to, last year we played 76 games. There was a lot of hockey left. So it's not the doom and gloom. And that's the thing...I think that was part of some of the adversity that we faced, that we put behind us. That's what we did this year. So there's always learning moments, whether you're winning or losing. It's a learning moment for ya, and it's how you react to it, and how you build from it. Again, we handled it the same way as we do this year. You don't get too wound up when we win, and you don't want to get too discouraged when we lose. Keep an even keel. It worked for us last year. Sometimes, you need to remind yourselves of that. You know what? It doesn't matter what profession you're in, there's days when...some days, you need a kick in the pants, and some days, you need a hug. Hugs usually work better. There's nothing wrong with a good kick in the rear-end either. It was just a learning experience. (JFTC: In your experience, this is something championship teams go through?) Oh, absolutely, absolutely...and I'm not saying we're a championship team this year [yet]. It's part of the process.

Newly-anointed All-Star LoVerde, on how his previous experience playing and living in Ontario helped his teammates when they moved:

It's helped them a little bit. I know last year, the guys were kind of asking me about where to live, what's there to do out there. Just asking me basic questions, so I was able to help the guys a little bit. But I think it's one of those things, guys got out here and figured it out pretty quickly, about where to go, what to do, where to eat at, all that good stuff. Like I said before, basic questions. A lot of it was questions last year, to be honest with you, when we found out about the move, when we found out we were coming out here, guys were just curious what Ontario, Rancho, Inland Empire had to offer. So I just gave them a few answers, nothing too crazy.

LoVerde, on the team's moment of doubt last Sunday:

I think it was a combination of things. I think guys were maybe a little frustrated in terms of...not how we were playing, but your lack of goal-scoring, you're down 2-nothing going into the third. I don't know exactly why. But there definitely was a sense of us seeming a little bit down in the locker room. But to build off that, I thought guys regrouped well between the second and third. I thought we came out and had a good third period. Yeah, I'm not sure why. I'm not sure what it was about. But at the end of the day, I liked our effort level in the third period. It's one of those things, it's a learning experience. We have to learn from it, build from it, become better from it.

LoVerde, on what he said to the guys after Stothers told them they "looked a little fragile":

At the end of the day, the first and second periods are over. We're down 2-nothing. So what? Let's regroup and come out for a good period. And I think the guys did that. I don't think it's necessarily anything I said. I just think the guys wanted to come out and have a good third period and try to win the game. I thought we played good, and it ended up being what it was.