Members of the
"You should be a little angry ... that we had a chance to take Game 1," center
"We need to understand we've got to play our system and play it aggressively, knowing that you can't wake up in the morning having some regrets that we were a little too passive."
Members of the Blackhawks awoke after their 2-1 comeback victory with reinforced confidence, having proved again that even when they don't play their best they can win. Why? Because they've become so comfortable in pressure situations during a stretch in which they've reached the Final three times in six seasons and already won it twice.
"The experience factor is something from the outside you can imagine being there. But the way the guys are professional approaching every situation, it speaks for itself," said Vermette, who was acquired in a trade with Arizona on Feb. 28. "I think you can tell they've been through some experience."
Teravainen, who began the season with Rockford (Ill.) of the
"I think there's always a feeling in our locker room when we're down goal a couple goals that we might come back," Teravainen said. "It's just a great thing to have."
There's no way to buy experience; you have to go through the challenges and triumphs to gain the poise and resilience the Blackhawks have shown every round. It's a key reason they overcame a slow start and won Wednesday and the Lightning — which started strong but strayed from its successful formula when it sat back too much in the third period — had so many regrets.
"I think there's that confidence in our group that we can find ways to come back if we're not in an ideal situation in a game or a series,"
Seven Blackhawks are playing in their third Final with the team:
The Lightning has six players with Final experience but only one has his name on the Cup —
"We gave a team that is very skilled and talented, knows what to do in those situations, we gave them the puck. They had it too much. The rest is history after that," Stamkos said. "We learned our lesson pretty quick here."
They'll have to put all of their lessons to use in Game 2 on Saturday at Amalie Arena, or risk going to Chicago in a deep hole.
"This will be a different test for our group," Stamkos said. "I think we look at all the positives in that game. There was a lot. I know that was the first game for a lot of us in the Final but I don't think that's an excuse for our group anymore. We got that out of the way."