Archive for February, 2011

I’m on ‘Clones

Posted: 2011/02/19 by Mike in Uncategorized

In the absence of any serious substance, which we hope to be getting back to soon, we thought we’d take a moment to plug Hockey Players for Kids and their video “I’m on the ‘Clones!”

The video was the brain child of HP4K member Scott Lehman (@lehmodriver) to raise awareness for Hockey Players for Kids. We’re sure most have you have seen the video but in case you haven’t, here you go…

We’ll be back soon with of our thoughts on the new personnel, the trades that brought them here and more.

 

Hey, remember this guy?

Photo by Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images

Maybe this will refresh your memory…

(Photo courtesy of Kara Stabler)

Remember how he wouldn’t play in the NHL? Or probably even be effective at the AHL level? He’s too small. Has that stopped David Desharnais once?

He was undrafted, likely for that reason, but would go 126-248-374 in 199 games with Chicoutimi of the QMJHL.

And then he came to Cincinnati. Remember that? 29-77-106 in 68 games, 33 points in 22 playoff games, and I’m pretty sure a lot of hardware has his name on it from that year.

Then he  left us for the greener pastures of the American Hockey League, just as we expected any guy who’d throw up 106 points in the ECHL would, and in his first two years with the Bulldogs, the Little Engine Who Could had 136 points in 137 games. He broke the Bulldogs’ single-season point record in 2010. He was called up from Hamilton to play his first game with the Montreal Canadiens, rode in a limo from Hamilton to Pittsburgh for that game, and while he didn’t do much in his short stint with the Habs, it was proof of what we already knew: this kid was good.

This year started with another reassignment to Hamilton, and in his 35 games with the baby Habs, he put up 45 points. So long, Desharnais, the NHL has called for real this time. In eighteen games with the Canadiens this season, Desharnais has 5 goals and 6 assists. Last night against the Maple Leafs he showed poise, patience, and the experience of a man with more than 24 games of NHL experience.

Montreal can’t get enough of him. And honestly, we can’t blame them. We couldn’t either.

“Davey’s awesome,” confirmed Pouliot, who has played left wing alongside Desharnais since the speedy pivot was called up from Hamilton on New Year’s Eve. “When he first got called up he was so happy. He kept talking about how excited he was to be in the NHL and to be a Montreal Canadien and now he’s doing more than ever.”

“He’s a small player, but he never hesitates to go into high traffic areas. For sure he’s not going to play like [Milan] Lucic or a big guy like that, but he plays with no fear out there,” added [Habs head coach Jacques Martin]. “I have complete confidence that that’s the type of game David is going to bring for us.”

“It’s amazing. Sometimes I don’t even realize what’s happening,” explained the diminutive center with a grin. “At the same time, I have to keep performing well and I think I’m starting to hit my stride. I have confidence in myself. It’s a psychological thing I guess, but after I scored that first goal [on January 12] everything has gone well and I’ve just kept working and now here I am,” he marveled. “But the toughest part isn’t getting here; it’s staying here. I want to stay here and I’m going to work my [butt] off to make sure I do.”

— “Rave Reviews

He was told a few weeks ago to find a permanent place of residence. David Desharnais has, through blue collar hard work, through battling all night every night, earned his place in the NHL.

But he’ll never play in the NHL.

A few more FNGs

Posted: 2011/02/10 by Mike in Uncategorized

Before I sit down to type up a bit on Coach Skalde’s responses at this weeks Coach’s Show here’s a little more news coming out of the Cyclones camp.

The Cyclones signed Todd Orlando to a contract on Tuesday. Listed at 6’7″ 225lbs Orlando definitely adds size to the Cyclones line up. Absent from hockey since 2008, time will tell if he can still play. A quick look at his stat page indicates the guy collects penalty minutes like kids collect candy on Halloween. Todd was not in action for Wednesday’s lose to Florida.

According to the AHL’s transaction page the Pittsburgh Penguins have reassigned Casey Pierro-Zabotel from Wheeling to Cincinnati. That is all the information I have on this right now. As soon as I hear anything more I’ll be sure to pass it on.

Update:

According to Shawn Rine, who cover the Nailers for The Intelligencer,  the trade has been confirmed by Pittsburgh and the trade went through Nashville.

Update:

Rine is now reporting via Twitter that the deal involves Christiaan Minella and Sam D’Agostino.

-Mike-

Yes, it’s about time for us to take a close look at the Cyclones playoff chances. Granted, there are still 26 games for the Cyclones to play and if They can keep it close there is a good chance they can be in control of Their own destiny over Their last 6 games which will be against Kalamazoo and Toledo; two of the teams They will be battling for a playoff slot down the stretch. That being said, it will be an uphill battle for the Cyclones.

The Cyclones sit in the 8th and final playoff position. However, a quick look at the numbers show that They are really on the outside looking in right now. Based on winning percentage the Cyclones sit in 9th position.

The Cyclones have struggled to find the consistency to keep them above .500 all season. If that continues the Cyclones will finish with around 72 points on the year and will be hitting the links early. The Kalamazoo Wings are winning sit at .523 which projects out to 76 points at the end of the year. The Elmira Jackals and Toledo Walleye come in at .511 which will bring them home with 73+ points. The battle will be tight and for the Cyclones, it has to start now. By our estimation the Cyclones will need to earn 30 points over Their last 26 games to have a shot at the post season. Is it impossible, of course not. In fact, it would require the Boys to post a win percentage of about .577 over Their last 26. That’s a record of 15-11 which is very obtainable.

Breaking those last 26 games down it looks like this; 14 games within the North Division, 11 against the South and 1 against the Atlantic. The games within the Division break down to 7 against Kzoo, 6 against Toledo and 1 with Wheeling. The games with the South start with 3 with Florida, 1 against Greenville (all at USBA) before the southern swing which includes 3 games each with South Carolina and Greenville and a single tilt with Gwinnett.

The games against the South Division will be key, of the 8 teams They have left on the schedule, the 4 South Division teams are the only ones the Cyclones have winning records against (3-2 vs FLA, 2-0-1 vs SC, and 1-0 vs GWT).

The games within the North Division are more of an open book, with the exception of Wheeling the Cyclones hold .500 records against both Toledo and Kzoo. Given there are 13 games remaining against those 2 teams it’s imperative the Cyclones swing those season series in Their favor. There is one more game against Wheeling and while every game is important in regards to making the playoffs, a win with Wheeling would be big for the Boys simply due to the recent results They’ve had against the Nailers.

When it’s all said and done, all of the above is just math and numbers, the games still have to be played. If Coach Skalde and the Cyclones can find the consistent play we feel they are capable of, They Cyclones should play at least a few more games into April.

We’ll have more regarding Coach Skalde and consistency in an upcoming post. I asked him what it would take for the Cyclones to find consistent efforts at a recent Cyclones’ Coach’s Show. Once the podcast is posted at Cycloneshockey.com we’ll weigh in with our thoughts on his response.

***

Other news and notes…

When Florida comes to town for a 3 game set starting Wednesday night, they will no doubt bring along their uptempo transition game. The Cyclones frustrated the Everblades during their trip to Florida and if They’re to do it again they’ll have to do it without Bryan O’Hanely who is still on assignment with Portland.

The Cyclones will have the services of Mathieu Aubin who has returned after a brief call up to the Lake Erie Monsters.

Marc Cheverie has been recalled to Rochester. It’s being reported that Amerks’ net minder Jacob Markstrom is out with a knee issue that isn’t serious but will require surgery but there is no time table set yet on when it will occur. Barring a move by the Panthers or Rochester odds are that Cheverie will be gone for at least while. This will give Chet Pickard the opportunity to prove what a 1st round net minder can do.

The Cyclones received permission from Florida/Rochester to deal Chris Clackson to Greenville for Forward Paul McIlveen. McIlveen will bring more experience into the locker room, but it’s hard to say if he can provide an instant jump start to the offense. Cyclones’ fans may remember McIlveen from the 07-08 South Carolina Stingrays and the 08-09 Elmira Jackals. His best season as a pro was 08-09 when he put up 55pts in 64 games.

-Mike-