I learned from yesterday, so I wasn’t a keener and here for the first session at 8:15 that just involved drills and skating. Got here at 9:00 just as the zamboni was finishing up, and now we should see some scrimmaging.
Here are the lineups for the first scrimmage:
O’Sullivan Horcoff Hemsky
Stone Schremp Linglet
Bates Paukovich MacMurchy
Dubnyk and Mucha
Moreau Cogliano Pisani
Reddox Potulny Fretter
Comrie Brennan Lazo
Khabibulin and Roy
Scrimmage started at 9:25. Not much happens for the first five minutes, the guys were more concerned on what rules they were going to play, although they do have two WHL linesmen running the game.
9:30…Big hit as Brennan lays out Motin right in front of the benches. Motin will have to learn quickly that he can’t admire his passes in the AHL.
9:31..Cogliano beats Horcoff in a draw in the neutral zone. Maybe Horcoff wants to give Cogliano some confidence or Cogliano has improved. I’ll count Cogliano’s draws all day. So far he is 2-0.
9:35…There hasn’t been one good scoring chance so far. Schremp had a 40-foot snapper from the hash marks that Khabibulin handled easily, other than that it has been mostly neutral zone play and breakouts.
9:37…Smid almost scores on a weak wrister from the left point. If he scores in an inter squad scrimmage he’ll score twice this year.
9:38…Russ Eliuk, one of the refs talks to Quinn about calling penalties. Quinn wants him to call it straight up, so we should see some penalties soon.
9:40…Schremp with a hit on Fretter. Okay it wasn’t huge, but he did lean into him and for Schremp that is a good sign. Crowd of about 400 here this morning, and many are having flashbacks to last season. The Oilers, as you recall, weren’t stellar at home, and 15 minutes into the scrimmage neither team has done much.
9:41…It is great watching them skate with no advertising on the boards, brings me back to my childhood when in the 80s rink board advertising wasn’t even thought of.
9:42…Comrie tries a toe-drag around Dudas, and it just about works but Dudas gets a skate blade on it, Brennan follows in with a rebound.
9:44…Horcoff opens the scoring on a broken play and Blue leads one to nothing.
9:47…Penalty shot…MacMurchy comes in across the blueline and snaps one five hole and team blue leads 2-0.
Wayne Fleming and Kelly Buchberger are coaching blue, while Quinn and Renney are on the white bench. Quinn is actually running the door. Okay, he isn’t opening it every time, but he does open it up for a few guys. He definitely doesn’t have an attitude that he is bigger than anyone else.
9:49…They break for a few minutes and change goalies. Roy is now in for team white replacing Khabibulin and Mucha comes in for Dubnyk for blue.
9:50..Cogliano gets schooled on the draw. It is a faceoff in his zone to the right of Roy. Horcoff goes straight ahead, and then passes it to Hemsky for a tap in goal. 3-0 Blue. Cogliano 2-1 in faceoffs. Crowd calls for a replay. They applaud the goal.
9:53…Team white has done nothing offensively. Brennan rips a 40 foot slapper and I think that is there 4th shot on goal. Not a good day for team white so far.
9:54…Great forecheck by Pisani, he knocks down a Hemsky pass and then strips Horcoff and dishes a soft pass back to Staios, who rips a one-timer just over the bar. Best sequence for white.
9:56…MacMurchy rips his second of the day, a nice snap shot from the slot over Roy’s glove. MacMurchy had nine goals and 26 points in 33 games for Stockton last year. He is hoping to make the jump to the AHL this year. He isn’t that big, but if he can finish he might have a chance to play for Daum. 4-0 team blue.
10:00..Blue continues the onslaught as Horcoff takes a pass from Hemsky after a turn over and rips a slap slot just inside the left post on Roy. Nickerson gave the puck away and is he ever slow. He is big and he might be able to play in the AHL, but his footspeed is noticeably lacking.
10:01…Call off the dogs…Souray jumps in from the blue line and snaps a rebound just under the bar for a 6-0 lead.
10:03…Pisani breaks the shut out as he takes a Cogliano pass in the slot and snaps one over the pad of Mucha, just inside the post. 6-1 team blue.
10:06…What a pass by Schremp. He circled behind the net came up the left boards and saucered a pass through five players to a streaking Motin at the right crease. Motin hits the outside of the post. But still a great pass by Schremp.
10:08…They decide to play four-on-four for a few minutes and nothing happens.
10:10…They are now doing a shootout…Schremp scores on his first three before Mucha stops him on the 4th try. Each team is given seven pucks and they go until they score seven. If a player is stopped he has to retrieve the puck and bring it back to centre.
Linglet for blue…Potulny scores for team white…Paukovich with a nice top shelf job for blue…Cody Wild buries one right on the ice and blue needs one more for the win..Potulny with his second for White…Lazo scores two for white and now next goal wins… Linglet off the bench for blue and rips home his second of the shootout and team blue wins. White has to skate two laps.
First scrimmage ends, now they will scrape the ice and the other group will come out for drills and then scrimmage later.
Brule left yesterday because he was sick, but he is back on the ice today and feeling much better.
10:58…About 20 minutes into drills, Quinn blows a whistle and has a meeting at centre ice. He doesn’t read the riot act, but you can hear him tell the group to stop wasting their time and do the drill properly and efficiently. After the brief chat the pace and execution is noticeably better.
For the a second scrimmage the lineup looks like this.
Penner Gagner Eberle
Nilsson Brule Minard
Lerg Trukhno McDonald
Pitton and JDD
Jacques Pouliot Stortini
Cornet O’Marra MacIntyre
Czuy Kytnar Emmerson
Perugini and Sorochan
11:39…Scrimmage starts..on paper team blue looks much better. I’m stunned that JDD isn’t in goal for team white at least so he could get some shots.
11:40…Faster pace than the morning session, but so far no chances either way.
11:42…Brule fans on a one-timer from Eberle….seconds later O’Marra breaks in alone for team white and slides it five hole. White leads 1-0.
11:43…Pouliot wins a draw in his own zone. He’ll be the guy I watch faceoff wise this session.
11:45…Not much happening and it got me thinking about how bad my Fish were yesterday. They had 13 turnovers all of last year, but they had four yesterday. Wake up Pennington, and feel free to have back-to-back productive seasons for once…
11:46… So far team blue hasn’t done much. They might have more paper skill, but white works hard. Riley Emmerson is freaking huge. 6’8″, 248 pounds. He leaned on Minard against the board and Minard felt it. Emmerson had three goals and nine points in nine games last year in the AHL. Not bad.
11:47…Arsene crushes McDonald…and instead of penalties the team gets a penalty shot. McDonald walks in, fakes backhand and then roofs a forehand over a sprawled out Perugini. 1-1.
11:49…White back out in front…Chorney takes a shot from the left point and Cornet redirects it past Pitton. 2-1 white.
11:50…McDonald comes back with a hit of his own on Arsene in the neutral zone. So far McDonald has been involved a lot.
11:52… Gagner brings into the offensive zone, button hooks at the left hashmarks and saucers one to Penner. His long range one-timer is handled easily by Perugini. That line hasn’t done much so far.
11:54..Pouliot loses draw at centre…he is 1-1…
11:55..Low battery light for my laptop just came on…hopefully it last a bit longer…
11:56…Pouliot wins faceoff in offensive zone cleanly to Jacques who gets a good shot away. Pitton covers up…Bendfeld and Stortini push and shove in front of the goal, and on next draw, which Pouliot wins, Stortini takes a healthy few strides at Bendfeld. This session has been much more entertaining than the morning one. Pouliot 3-1 in draw.
11:59: Quick few minute break.
12:03…Nilsson dominates this shift. Enters the zone with lots of speed dances around two guys on team white, battles against the wall and then has a saucer pass knocked out of the air. He then hustles back on the back check. His best shift by far.
12:07..MacIntryre is laying the body. He hit Minard last shift and now this team he leaned into Penner against the wall, and then walked over Grebeshkov to get the puck out of the zone. He is a guy who has to play that way even in a scrimmage. Gagner line had their best shift v. MacIntrye’s line. Had a good cycle going.
12:12…reboot computer…wireless went down.
12:13…They switch and start playing four on four.
12:15…Brule controls the puck for 20 seconds in the offensive zone, he circles back to the left point, feathers a pass to Plante who walks in from the right point and rips one under the bar. Great shot and we are tied at 2.
12:16..McDonald draws another penalty and goes in on his second penalty shot, but this time he misplays the puck, trips over Sorochan’s stick and doesn’t score.
12:18… Gagner from behind the net puts a pass on Penner’s tape and he one-timed it top shelf. The goal draws some oohs and ahhs from the crowd. 3-2 blue.
12:20…Now we go to the shoot out…Seven pucks for each team. They go until they score all seven. If a player misses he has to bring the puck back to centre.
12:22…Prout for white and Gagner for blue…both stopped… Kytnar scores for white…then Pouliot scores three times in a row…Penner with a nifty move and then McDonald reply for blue…Czuy burys two in a row for white. He has some nice hands….Cornet scores for white and they declare game over. That is only six goals, but they win and blue skates two laps with white in the middle of the ice watching….white then does some laps and Stortini blows a wheel behind the net and crashes into the end boards, which gets a laugh from his teammates.
Day two is done…I will try to get most of tomorrow’s lineup later this afternoon.