Following last weekend's somewhat less than outstanding performance, our beloved Monsters [10-9-1] look to get back on track with 3 big games against division foes Toronto [12-7-1] and Hamilton [10-9-3]. Currently, the Amerks, Bulldogs and Monsters are basically tied in the North division, with the Marlies starting to edge away for first place.
To recap what happened last week as quickly and painlessly as possible, Monsters beat Utica 3-2 on Tuesday, but lost Karl Stollery on a wicked hit. Friday and Saturday saw tough losses to Rochester 5-3 and Hamilton 4-1.
With Karl Stollery hurt and Gabe Beaupre ailing in some way, Lake Erie signed defenseman Russ Sinkewich to an emergency PTO for Saturday's game. On Monday, the Monsters recalled defenseman Lee Moffie and forward Vincent Arseneau from the Denver Cutthroats. Calling up Moffie makes sense to replenish the depleted defense, and Sinkewich has been released, so I deduce that Stollery is still hurt but Beaupre should be good to go.
The Arseneau callup is perplexing. Unless there was an injury in Sunday's game we don't know about, it doesn't make much sense. Every game, Chynoweth has to healthy scratch a forward that deserves to play, lately either Trevor Cheek or Gabe Desjardins. One theory I have is that Coach C would rather not have defenseman Dan Maggio taking fighting majors if at all possible, so Arseneau gets playing time as the designated facepuncher. I hope that's incorrect, but it makes as much sense as anything else.
The Monsters site has another Getting to Know... segment this week with another amateur juggler, Joey Hishon, and aspiring Major League Baseball player Mike Sgarbossa.
This week's AHL power rankings from the Hockey Writers have the good guys dropping four spots down to 19th.
An interesting but not incredibly well-informed look at the Avs Next 5 prospects to arrive in the NHL. It's from Bleacher Report so if you're allergic to slideshows, I'll go ahead and tell you they think it's Stef, Aggz, Picks, Hish and Lerg. It's worth a read for shits & giggles anyway.
Good news for our loyal readers from the home market. FOX SportsTime Ohio will be carrying the Monsters/Amerks outdoor hockey contest next Friday the 13th. The rest of us will have to make do with throwing down the $6 to view AHL Live...
Thursday vs Toronto 7:00pm, radio on WHKW
Friday vs Hamilton 7:30pm, radio on WKNR
Sunday at Hamilton 3:00pm, radio on WHK
Preview from lakeeriemonsters.com unavailable at press time
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The Monsters need all the help they can get, and pre-game tunes is right there with a multi-decade trifecta that will power through the whole weekend:
Thursday/70's/Marlies - "20th Century Boy" from Marc Bolan and T. Rex
Friday/80's/Bulldogs - "Freewheel Burning". Priest.
Sunday/90's/at Bulldogs - "Seasons in the Abyss" by Slayer. Awesome.
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As luck would have it, the Monsters/Avs play on the same day for all three of these games with Lake Erie's beginning a couple hours beforehand. Feel free to drop by and join the madness. I'll be here updating and tweeting. Enjoy!