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Jack McCaffery is the lead sports columnist for the Daily Times and He has spent several decades covering everything from the Phillies, Eagles, Flyers and Sixers, to college hoops, to high school sports in Delco.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016


Dave Hakstol's interview with the press prior to Feb. 9, 2016 game vs. Anaheim:

What do you expect from an opponent that is coming off a bad game?

“I would imagine that you'd get a pretty good edge to their game, I'd imagine. Beyond that, there's not much for me to comment on. I am worried about our team and making sure we have our edge.”

You have been around and have coached championship teams, do you ever get a sense when that team has a certain something to make a run?

“Well, I think you have to prove that day after day, to be honest with you. You have to prove that you have that focus and have that hunger and that togetherness day after day. And that's how you build that type of a mentality.”

Any tell-tale signs that you can pick up early?

“You can look back on it after you have the body of work that's been completed. But again it's a business of doing it day after day. And I like what our group is doing. I like the mentality that we're playing with and the togetherness that we are playing with. But you prove those things over the long haul.”

When playing against a big, physical team like Anaheim, is it that much more important to they don't get pucks past the 'D' and kind of grind your guys down?

“You're not going to overpower this group, especially this group of forwards. You have to be very good positionally. You have to be quick to spots. You've got to be real tenacious. So there are a lot of elements at play.”

On Radko Gudas, do you have to talk to him about going for, because there have been times in recent games where he will deviate from where he is supposed to be to make a hit, and all of a sudden you are facing a 2-on-1?

“I think this time of year, it's not playoff time yet, but you get to this time of season and it is about efficiency. And that's part of being efficient, picking your spots and being smart. Again, you have to defend well, defend smartly, and you have to move pucks. That's what the job of a good defenseman is. And then from there, the other elements you can bring are bonus elements that you bring to your team.”

Though it's your first year, your thoughts on 50th anniversary of the inception of the franchise?

“Well, the first thought, I guess, is Mr. Snider. That comes to mind, and what he has built, and this franchise and what it means to the city of Philadelphia. Those are the things that come to mind for me.”