Take a look, it’s in a book, the Reading Rainbow

Posted: 2009/12/11 by Mike in 2009-2010 Regular Season
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Here is some quick news and notes as we head into a 2 game set with Reading:

-The Cyclones should have a new face in the line-up this weekend. According to the AHL transaction page Mark Van Guilder has been loaned to Cincinnati. Van Guilder led the 08-09 Cyclones with 22g-44a for 70pts. He’s played in 13 games for the Admirals. His production has struggled a bit in the AHL, and with the play of Chris Mueller, Milwaukee can afford to send Mark here for a few games to hopefully jump start his game. Mark got off to a slow start last season but came on strong late in the season after finding confidence in his game.

-Speaking of Chris Mueller, he’s played in 12 games for the Admirals scoring 2 goals and logging 3 assists. If he continues with that effort, I can’t see him coming back to Cincinnati anytime soon.

-The Reading Royals come to town leading the East Division with 29 points, which is also good for 3rd in the conference. The Cyclones have 27 points but have 2 games in hand on the Royals.

-Reading will give up goals. While the Royals come into town with a winning record they have given up more goals than they’ve scored. Their roster boasts 4 goalies, 3 of which have GAA’s over 3. Rookie Matt Dalton gets the bulk of the action for the Royals and sports a 3.47 GAA and a .906 SV%.

-Return of the Bens and a Joey. Ben Gordon, Ben Mcleod and Joey Ryan will return to Cincinnati. Gordon and McLeod, along with 2 players to be named later, were sent to Reading at the trade deadline last season for Mac Faulkner and Gerard Miller. Joey Ryan became a part of the trade in the post season  and was expected to play this season for the Toronto Marlies but found himself at the bottom of the depth chart for the defensively deep Marlies. The final player in the trade was Kyle Rank who is currently playing for the Portland Pirates. An underachiever last season Gordon leads the Royals with 11 goals and 16 assists for 27 points.

-The Cyclones PK Unit has climbed back to 2nd in the league, killing off 85.4% of the short handed situations they face. The Royals on the other hand are 18th in the league with just a 79.5% kill rate. The teams have nearly identical PP Units; the Cyclones converting on 16.5% of their chances and Reading converting at 16.4%. Reading has accumulated over 200 more PIMs than the Cyclones, so I give the Cyclones the advantage in the special teams battle.

-Reading has 2 players in the top 20 of the League when it comes to scoring in Ben Gordon and Daniel Steiner.

This is definitely not last years Reading Royals team. They’ve been upgraded at nearly every position. I think the the keys for the Cyclones are:

*Be tenacious on the forecheck. Get pucks deep and keep them there.

*Get a goal early. With 2 young net minders and most likely playing against a rookie goalie, getting the first goal does wonders for the confidence of whom ever we have in net and establishishes doubt in the head of the opposition.

*Stay balanced. The past few games have seen different lines and different players involved in the scoring making it very difficult to match up defensively.

*Shut them down. The numbers indicate that Reading gets much of their scoring from just a few players. The Cyclones have to shut these guys down and force someone else to step up.

*Win the 5 on 5 game and make Reading pay on the PP. The Cyclones have been iffy on the PP this season but with Readings questionable PK Unit, the Cyclones have to convert and make Royals pay.

-Mike-

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Comments
  1. Brian says:

    “An underachiever last season Gordon leads the Royals with 11 goals and 16 assists for 27 points.”

    I wouldnt really call 51 games, 15 goals, and 24 assists for 39 pts, and a +13 an underachiever as a rookie since at the end of the year he was still 5th in scoring for the clones despite not playing in cincy for the final 12 games. When he did get traded he averaged more then a point a game for 12 games, 6 goals and 12 assists for 18 pts and even a +3 on a bad Reading team. All in all 63 G, 21 Goals, and 36 assists for 57 pts and a +16, thats a fine rookie season, I was mad when they traded him. You have your opinion and I will respect that.

  2. Lisa B says:

    Hey Mike, what line do you see Vanny on or maybe the better phrasing is, which line would YOU like to see him on?

  3. Mike says:

    Brian, I appreciate the feedback. I liked Gordo. He was a good kid and I’m glad he’s doing well in Reading. I was also a bit upset when he was traded. The whole trade had a big question make hanging over it with the Cyclones giving up a lot of potential and futures to get 2 players in return; one of which (Faulkner) was instrumental in the run into and through the playoffs and the other (Miller) was a complete disappointment.

    That being said I should have qualified my statement a bit. I think Ben underachieved as a member of the Cyclones but showed what he was capable of on a bad Reading team after the trade and continues to do so the season. If you go back and look at the stats game by game (which I did, I’m that much of a stat geek, although I’m embarrassed to say I missed an assist somewhere) you’ll see that from the start of the season through the end of December Ben did not play in 11 of 32 games and registered points in just 7 of the 21 games he did play in. Of his 39 points, only 8 or 9 came during this portion of the season and his play was such that he struggled to remain in the line up. The rest of Ben’s points came during the 2nd half of the season. The difference here is that during the 1st half of the season Ben found himself playing primarily with Cohen and Mcleod and was not playing up to snuff. In the 2nd half he got paired with Kilpatrick and Van Guilder, as well as, Ehgoetz and Syroczinski. Coincidence? It can easily be argued that when Ben’s numbers were inflated during this time period since Van Guilder and Kilpatrick were making anyone who ended up on their line look good. It could also be argued that getting moved to to a top line and playing with the likes of Kilpatrick, Van Guilder, Ehgoetz, and Syrozcinski forced him to elevate his game. Regardless of how you look at it, it showed what Ben was capable of and he carried that through to Reading. When you look at how he finished up, especially after excelling on a bad Reading team, it’s easy to speculate that he easily left 15 to 20 pts on the table last season, especially in the 1st half and in my opinion, that’s underacheiving.

    Lisa, assuming the Cyclones have a full compliment of healthy players, sans Voakes and Kilpatrick, they have 12 forwards and 8 defensemen. Chuck has to like this situation; for the first time since the Kelly Cup Championship Season he’s going to have to scratch 4 capable, healthy players. I’m counting O’leary and Coghlan in that total, although if I recall correctly both are on short term IR and assuming that continues Chuck still has 2 to scratch.

    If i had to guess the lines, I would go with something like this (in no particular order):

    Up Front:
    Sproat/Robo/Pierce
    Reynolds/Eghoetz/Van Guilder
    Mclean/Del Monte/Lacroix
    Benson

    Blueline:
    Jozsa/Zinger
    O’Hanely/Motherwell
    Krantz/Roeder

    Scratches:
    O’leary, Morehouse, Coghlan, Sheahan

    Personally I’d rather see Sheahan or Coghlan over Zinger, but I won’t go there. I would say Sheahan might get the start over Krantz, but with Reading’s questionable PK I’d prefer to have Krantz’s shot in the line-up. Up front, the Sproat/Robo/Pierce line has been playing too well to break up. The same is the case with Barret and Scotty; they play too well together to break up and with Barret having some familiarity with Van Guilder from last season, he would seem to be a good fit. The rest of the line-up fills out from there giving the Cyclones 3 more than capable scoring lines that also have plenty of grit, especially when you factor in Benson’s ability to play on any line without missing a beat.

    -Mike-

  4. Brian says:

    Im a Stats man myself so your not alone, I really think that trade was not a good one either considering McLeod, Gordon, and Ryan are still in Reading and Faulkner is overseas, and Miller is MIA so Reading is really the benefit of probably the only bad choice that Chuck has made, but you cant blame Chuck at the time Faulker was the guy in Reading and we needed that for our playoff run, and he really did help (9pts in 14games) but I do think we gave up too mutch, Gordon, McLeod, Sawatske, and later Rank, and Ryan for two guys that are not with us, but thats the way pro sports are.
    Enjoy the site, keep it up!

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