1/2/19 – Utica Comets vs. Syracuse Crunch

What is up my fellow Canuckleheads; even after the Dahlen/Burrows trade, Pierre Dorion felt comfortable enough to give up a 6th rounder for marginal MORE expensive improvements to their team. I dont know how JB did it, but I appreciate it. While it’s a heartbreaker for the Utica fans to see a fan favorite go to a division rival, the posturing the Canucks have done to ensure Demko gets a fair shake as the Canucks backup is fantastic for us in favor of developing our prospects! I’m stoked for Demko tonight as he’ll look to prove to the Canucks fans that he is the real deal.

 

As you know the last JB trade that affected the AHL squad, I wasn’t too fond of. But I think JB hit a homerun on this one. Base on what I’ve seen, whether its here at r/canucks, on the radio, twitter, or wtv…but I feel like our fanbase doesn’t realize just how fucking good and ready Thatcher Demko is for a shot with the big club. Thatcher possible success may also lead to his former Utica roommate, Zack MacEwen getting a looksee as well with the big club, so this is going to be a great second half of the year for us development fans!

 

Shit, I haven’t even gotten into the fact that Gaudettes fuckin back in the Comets line up! Between Wacey Hamiltons return and Gaudette’s, its a relief to have some quality centerman for our winger prospects to work with for this next stretch of games!

 

Anyways, I’m excited for what tonights line up can bring against the Syracuse Crunch…the same team that absolutely trounced them in their last outing, 10-1! So let’s get into it!

 

Starting Lineup

LW C RW
Gaunce Kero Boucher
Dahlen Gaudette MacEwen
Jasek Hamilton Bancks
Arseneau Darcy Lind
LD RD
Brisebois Sifers
McEneny Graham
Dirk Saucerman
G
Thatcher Demko

 

 

Benched
Blujus Gadjovich MacMaster Wyszomirski

RE: Benching’s

Surprisingly Jesse Graham slots in for Dylan Blujus…Blujus has been really reliable in this past couple weeks, wheras Graham has really yet to show a decent defensive game aside from his quick skates and offensive instincts. I’m sure Cull looks at Blujus and Graham and wishes the two would merge their skillsets together to be more complete defensemen! But alas he is stuck in the realm of reality which is where…I too, toil in my …very, existence…

Also benched was Jonah Gadjovich which I actually found QUITE surprising…he Hamilton and Bancks had tremendous chemistry together their last game and proved to be quite the difficult line to play against for the Rochester Americans.

TRANSACTIONS

The Comets signed defenceman Craig Wyszomirski to a PTO to shore up their defensive depth…kind of a strange move considering they have Dylan Blujus as the 7th D tonight when he has actually been QUITE reliably solid as of late.

As already stated, Darren Archibald was shipped off the Ottawa Senators, and most likely will automatically report to the Belleville Senators.

RE: INJURY REPORT

Injury Report
Bachman Chatfield Juolevi Sautner Woods
Out for the Season foot Out for the season his fucking faceeeeeee lower body

With the trade of Mike McKenna to the Canucks, JB and Ryan Johnson confirmed that Richard Bachmans season with the Comets was done…and that COULD extend even to next year depending on how his recovery goes.

 

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 Blue

 

 

Score at the end of the first period: 1-0 Comets

 

I mean….it’s better than the fucking 3-zip start the LAST time these two teams met…I really wish I wash watching Gadjovich out there with Hamilton and Bancks. Don’t get me wrong, Jasek, Hamilton and Bancks absolutely CONTROL the game when they’re on a shift together, they just control the puck whenever they’ve been out there…but I dunno something about Gadjovich skating like a man possessed out there is missed in tonight’s lineup… I’d definitely prefer Gadjers much more straight forward style of play over whatever Kole Lind has been trying tonight…the kid tries to go flash in so many moves that just end up with him losing possession; plus he’s resorting to his stupid ass blind drop passes that ALSO drop possession for the Comets…overall his game tonight has been super weak.

 

2nd Period

 

 

The Score at the end of the 2nd period: 1-1 Tie

 

Ehhh a pretty rough period for the Comets, heavily outshot, 17 to 7, and most of those shots were really solid scoring opportunities…Felt like the Comets really struggled to even get it past the neutral zone or sustain any kind of pressure in the Crunch’ end. Given that the first period wasn’t that clean either…I worry that the 3rd period might be a full collapse. Hopefully I’m wrong though and the Comets turn it onin the third

 

3rd Period

 

 

Final Score: 4-2 Comets

 

Scoresheet

 

Period Team Goalscorer Primary assist helper type
1st Utica Reid Boucher Zack MacEwen
2nd Syracuse Alex Barre-Boulet Cory Conacher Cameron Gaunce PPG
3rd Utica Jesse Graham Brendan Gaunce PPG
3rd Utica Evan McEneny Tanner Kero 4 v4
3rd Syracuse Cory Conacher Cameron Gaunce Carter Verhaeghe PPG
3rd Utica Brendan Gaunce Reid Boucher Thatcher Demko EN

 

Takeaways

  • Really impressive third period from the team, heavy possession, QUALITY chances from the team and a lot of meaningful passes, not mindless passes
  • With the injuries to Chatfield, Juolevi and Sautner, I wouldn’t be shocked if Evan McEneny was the one to get a Canucks call up should injuries befall the Canucks blue line. The guy has been so solid both defensively and offensively…Really solid awareness with his passing, and despite a few times being beat on a breakaway, he isn’t the type to get drawn into taking a dumb penalty off a skating issue which is great to see.
  • Really liking the line combination of Dahlen, Gaudette and MacEwen, given some time, I think this line could be a wrecking ball. All three are great along the boards and have great puck handling skills and finishing ability. I think once Gaudette gets re-acquainted with playing with these guys, I think they’ll be lights out…hell they were in the third period together
  • Bring back Jonah Gadjovich and slot him with Hamilton and Bancks…I want Jasek on a line with Boucher and Kero generating offense and scoring, not in a shutdown energy line that just out-possesses the shit out of their opponents. As a coach its probably fucking awesome that your 3rd line is just absolutely lights out with possession along the boards in the offensive zone…but man Jasek is just wasted on the third line, Gadjovich looked great with Hamilton and Bancks and I’d hope to see him back there again.
  • Starting to really wonder what Kole Lind’s problem is with his game. The kid was having solid games in December, and really starting to spread his wings as a player so to speak…but then he gets benched once and he reverts back to the player that struggled with consistent gameplay…like tonight he was just a liability everytime he was on the ice…wheras 4 games ago the guy was lights out with takeaways and generating chances…that guy was just not there at all tonight…or in the previous game he played either. Really wondering why he’s so up and down
  • Dirk/Saucerman as ECHL PTO’s are absolutely earning their icetime…stepping up to the play to generate offense at the right times…holding the zone…rarely getting beat to the puck…and if they do they use their strength to outmuscle players instead of just taking a hooking or tripping penalty to make up for their deficiencies…they’re good man…especially on a line together they look really solid…I commend Cull for playing two ECHL callups as his third pairing because that shows his trust in their abilities, and the confidence boost shows in Dirk and the Sauce’s games because they looked like AHL’ers tonight.
  • Despite one or two rebound control issues, Demko played a really sound game tonight. My heart stopped when Cory Conacher ran into him because I was like, oh god…don’t tell me he’s injured… not when he finally gets his moment with the Canucks…I mean he set a team record for wins tonight…so anyone saying he still needs time in the AHL just needs to read that stat and shhhh…the kid is ready…his mistakes are no different than many NHL backups mistakes…his time is now! Lets fucking go!

 

Comets Three Stars

  1. Jonathan Dahlen, Adam Gaudette and Zack MacEwen – for giving me a glimpse of a brighter tomorrow
  2. Thatcher Demko – for his team record setting 54th win with the Comets…couldn’t have earned his call-up in a bigger way.
  3. Reid Boucher – that slap pass to MacEwen at the front of the net was so slick. Boucher is an underrated passer/playmaker, and I think that pass alone showed what he could be capable of at the NHL level if he just showed the same speed and tenacity in his defensive game

 

What’s Next?

 

The Comets return this Saturday and Sunday when they visit the Columbus Blue Jackets farm team, the Cleveland Monsters. The Monsters are coming off a monstrous layoff, having not played since last Saturday, December 29th against the Grand Rapids Griffins where they lost in a shootout. The Monsters and the Comets are currently tied with 39 points in the North Division, but Cleveland has the edge as they have 4 games in hand. Both teams share similar records in their last 10, with Utica edging the Monsters on the season with more goals for. Should be a competitive series; their first meeting saw the Comets lose 4-3 in regulation.

 

As always I Hope you guys enjoyed this edition of the Farmies. I tried to keep it a bit quicker for this issue as holy fuck the Canucks had a bevvy of storylines coming out of tonight between the World Juniors, Canucks game, the Archibald/Nilsson trade…twas a big day for the future! 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!

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