10/12/19 – Utica Comets vs. Charlotte Checkers

What’s up Canucks fans, Farmies hitting you up with the second REWIND edition while we wait for this weekends triple header! I thought that given the trade of Tanner MacMaster and the call-up of Guillaume Brisebois in the wake of Alex Edlers brutal injury, meant it’d be a good time to revisit some of the Comets earlier games again to look for any noticeable improvements in our prospects games, or see some area’s that maybe they have still yet to figure out.

 

Also given that I’m pretty apprehensive about “Brisebois being better than Pouliot,” a comment or remark I’ve read several times across twitter and other mediums, I thought since I kind of come across really negative or down on Breeze, that it would be fair for me to continue my attempt at revisiting ALL the Comets games of this season so that my impression and opinion, criticisms or praises of him AND others in the Comets lineup be fair and valid so as I dont sound like a massive homer, or sound like I’m just picking favorites.

 

Firstly though, to lay it out there, I get what the Canucks are doing, they want to see what they got in their 2015 3rd rounder…I get it, and it makes sense….I just genuinely believe that if the Canucks are calling up a D-man with a high probability of them being required to play a game or two while Edler’s out, then Evan McEneny would be THAT guy due to how strong he’s been playing the last two months since their other #1 D-man, Ashton Sautner went down with injury…

 

Based on all that I’ve watched, I just want everyones expectations to be put in check, because I think Brisebois could be a third pairing Troy Stecher type of player, but he’s just a few years from that point…he’s fast yes, he can step up into the play, and attempts to be physical, but defensively he still has a lot of brain farts while holding the puck and can have very Gudbranson/Pouliot like passing gaffes…so anyone expecting someone infinitely better than 5 or 44 to step into the lineup, they need to check themselves a bit, because the egg-timer hasn’t gone off yet, at least for me…he could completely prove me wrong and just find another gear and pops off in the NHL but I just needed to put a realistic take out there cause I’ve been reading some head-scratchers

 

And RE: my take on McEneny, clearly his skating is the biggest detriment to his game…I think anyone who goes through a brutal knee repair surgery wont be the quickest guy ever, but his positioning and awareness on the ice makes up for his lack of skating as he rarely puts himself in a position to be caught too far up or in a position that leaves his D partner to cover for him. In fact he is the one doing the coverage for his partner, whether it was Sautner, Blujus, Garham or Sifers. I understand that a lot of Utica fans complain that for a bigger D-man he doesn’t put his body into his checks, which is a criticism I totally get, I also get not wanting to blow out your knee on your last contract before becoming a UFA….just give the guy a chance…he’s fucking 5th on the team in points! He’s got 23 points as a d-man and the next highest is fucking Olli Juolevi who’s been out since November 17th, that means SINCE THEN not a single D-man has even been able to pass Juolevi’s totals… he’s quite literally the ONLY d-man generating offense for this team lol…. for the record, Brisebois sits 19th on the team in points, with 9 points, tied with offensive dyanmo’s Jaime Sifers and Carter Bancks

 

Annnnnyways lets get into this Rewind and see how our prospects looked in the early stages of their AHL games to see if we can highlight any nuggets of gold, or coal!

 

Starting Lineup

 

LW C RW
MacMaster Kero Boucher
Archibald Gaudette Dahlen
Bancks Woods Lind
MacEwen Darcy Gadjovich
LD RD
Juolevi Chatfield
McEneny Sautner
Brisebois Sifers
G
Richard Bachman

 

Kind of funny looking at this game 3 of the season’s lineup and comparing to where we’re at now.

 

Benched
Dirk Blujus Jasek Arseneau Palmu Carcone

 

RE: INJURY REPORT

 

Injury Report
Demko Gaunce Hamilton

 

Streamable Clarity Improvement Notice

 

Continuing with last issues theme, going to be Players full name (jersey number) – place in streamable (if not outright obvious) then every sub sequential play featuring that player it’ll be last name(jersey number) – place in streamable (if not outright obvious) I’m also going to reduce the amount of hyperlink in the GOAL streamables, since that’s what I think MOST people are here for and don’t want some gaudy blue taking up the screen.

 

1st period

 

Comets in White

 

 

Score at the end of the first period: 2-2 Tie

 

Pretty typical Comets period, come out swinging early, score a couple early, regress a bit and struggle in the neutral zone leading to a lot of breakout opportunities for the opposing team. Comets out shot the Checkers 16 to 10 in that one….now this second period is usually where they completely turtle and get lit up, wonder if things were different earlier this season!

 

2nd Period

 

 

The Score at the end of the 2nd period: 3-2 Checkers

 

Well it wasn’t as bad as I thought, not a lot of chances for the Comets, but boy did they have trouble getting out of their own end, like A LOT of trouble. I actually really liked Gadjovich and MacEwen on a line together, they actually didn’t look half bad, some solid passing and breakouts from the two

 

3rd Period

 

 

The Score at the end of the 3rd period: 4-3 Charlotte Checkers

 

Its kind of funny seeing the Comets be the exact opposite of the Canucks, start strong early and then just completely vanish late.. and it looks like they’ve been maintaining this strategy since the beginning. Another brutal 2nd and 3rd from the Comets sees them outshot 21 to 9. The scoreline would imply a tightly contested game, but man they were barely staying afloat in this one.

 

Final Score: 4-3 Utica Comets

 

Scoresheet

 

Period Team Goalscorer Primary assist helper type
1st Utica Reid Boucher Tanner MacMaster 5v5
1st Utica Adam Gaudette Kole Lind PPG
1st Charlotte Saku Maenalanen Clark Bishop SHG
1st Charlotte Dennis Robertson Alndrew Poturalski 5v5
2nd Charlotte Morgan Geekie Cliff Pu Spencer Smallman 5v5
3rd Utica Reid Boucher Zack MacEwen 5V5
3rd Charlotte Dennis Robertson Julian Gauthier Saku Maenalanen 5v5

 

Takeaways

  • Not much to say really, Gadjovich looked a lot better than I really expected him to in the early part of the season…his compete was there, he played hard along the boards, created chances…not quite sure where the “lack of compete” and “adapting to the AHL” thing came from, because he was game man, and now that we’re 45 games deep into the season, its clear the Charlotte Checkers are the best team in the AHL, and here he was tonight being effective on the penalty kill and in the offensive zone against a very game and tough opponent. Not sure why he had to slide out so we could give more ice-time to Arseneau, Woods, Bancks, Hamilton and other defensive, bottom 6 AHL’ers. …that being said Gadj is a consummate pro and said in interviews since the start of the season that adapting to the mens league would be the hardest for him…but still…the guy should have been given games after this performance…he looked good with MacEwen and benching him every second game for the rest of the month seemed like a huge mistake.
  • I think the most disappointing thing for me was seeing the stark contrast in the Tanner MacMaster of December/January and the October MacMaster…he looked sharp, head up, good on the offensive, fast on his skates…the guy as of late must ‘ve had his confidence absolutely rattled after getting shafted on the bench for the better part of December and leading into January…given the comments from Palmu after returning to the Liiga, I can’t say I’m surprised that MacMaster’s ability may have dipped…hard to tolerate being benched if you don’t know when you’re going to slide back in, and even when you do, you have no idea what kind of game you’re expected to play….not every prospect/rookie has to play like Carter Bancks, Wacey Hamilton and Brendan Woods to earn their ice time, players have their own style of play, and I really hope molding Canucks rookies to be like AHL depth plugs isn’t the over-arching game plan for the development squad because that shit just isn’t going to work for some of these kids styles of play
  • Defensive gaffes and compete/energy level aside, I cant help but be so dissappointed watching Olli Juolevi play…I really think he’d have come into his own in the latter half of this season, just like Gadjovich and Lind have… His passing is just so crisp and smooth… get this kid working with the same skating/explosiveness coach that Zack MacEwen worked with and this kid will prove everybody wrong and be a force in the NHL. Even based on this game alone, I can confidently say his passing and vision are head and shoulders above all other d-men. I pump McEneny’s tires a lot based on his reliable play, but he and everyone else has got nothing on Juolevi’s offensive potential. Juolevi will most likely be working on his skating regardless, post-knee injury recovery, so I can’t wait to see what he’ll look like fully healthy at next years camp.

 

Comets Three Stars

  1. Zack MacEwen
  2. Adam Gaudette
  3. Kole Lind

 

What’s Next?

 

The Regular Farmies will return this weekend, when the Comets return for a BRUTAL triple header against the Lehigh Valley Phantoms, Rochester Americans and the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. In theory, I should’ve been resting my wrists for the weekend, but I needed to flex my writing muscles, even if there wasn’t much to write home about!

 

Until then, I Hope you guys enjoyed this REWIND edition of the Farmies, and as always any feedback, improvement suggestions, content or highlights you’d like me to focus/pick out during games, let me know and I’ll do my best to provide during the next Farmies!

 

10/6/18 – Utica Comets vs. Belleville Senators

2nd Part of my Farmies:Rewind series where I look over games that happened pre-Farmies. Due to the nature of revieiwing multiple games in one night, these are a bit more stripped down than the usual Farmies.

Comets in White

  1st Period

2nd Period

3rd Period

Score at the end of the third period: 3-1 Comets

Well this was a fun game to watch. Utica was dominant, and had a nasty penalty kill, going 3/3 on the PK with the 1 7 minute long penalty being the most impressive kill I’ve seen from any team. Was interesting to see Lind get subbed out as I thought he had a pretty impressive first game with the Comets, and looked great on a line with Gaudette and Archibald…kind of the same case tonight as well, where Palmu looked really good playing with Gaudette and Archibald…things kinda went funky in the 3rd period when Brendan Woods got tossed from the game, so lines started to get jumbled pretty quickly and went off the rails a bit…but honestly Palmu specifically showed good hustle on his shifts, was leading a lot of zone entry attempts, and was controlling the puck quite well minus a few shifts where he looked gassed.

10/5/18 – Utica Comets vs. Toronto Marlies

This was a part of my Farmies:Rewind series where I reviewed games that had happened way before I had begun doing the Farmies series. Here’s a trimmed down version of the Farmies that covered their season opener at home.

Comets in White

  1st Period

2nd Period

3rd Period

Final Score: 7-3 Toronto Marlies

In the first game of the season facing the reigning Calder Cup champions, the team did actually PRETTY GOOD all things considered, had they had Demko in net instead of Bachman, a lot of those soft glove side goals probably get stopped, and that 6th goal blunder probably never happens. Pretty interesting to see some of the early line chemistry from the team…Gaudette/Lind/Archibald was a very effective line all things considered, I think had Gaudette been left to play out the season with Utica he and Lind probably would’ve started to gel rather quickly, because even in their first real game together, the chemistry looked pretty solid.