The beloved Rampage finish off their month-long odyssey away from the AT&T Center with a grueling 3-in-3 that ranges from San Diego to Stockton. Currently a game under .500 and in last place, to make any kind of a push will require a sweep.
- Andreas Martinsen was sent down from the Avs on Tuesday
- Ben Street was waived on Tuesday, cleared and was sent down Wednesday
- Chris Wagner was waived on Wednesday, did not clear and was reclaimed by the Ducks/Gulls. He could be in the lineup against the Rampage tonight.
- Troy Bourke was recalled by the Rampage on Thursday from Ft Wayne where he put up 5G/6A and 37 SOG in 9 games.
- Gee, that sure sounds like a lot of forwards. 16 in fact on the roster currently. Street is injured we know but something else is going on and the Avs will likely be making a callup on Monday at the latest. The flu has been making it's way around the locker room so that's a possibility as well.
- "Those things are a big honor, but I’m just trying to play my own game and help the team," A quote from Mikko Rantanen in an article from the good folks at the Rampage site about the possible AHL Rookie of the Year.
- Nate and JP's latest episode of RWtH Live covers the Lake Erie Weekend and some thoughts on the trade deadline
- Some interesting quotes from Avs Director of Player Development David Oliver in this article from Blake Sebring of the Ft Wayne News-Sentinel this week. F'rinstance:
"Our big team [the Avs], we play in a real tough division, a tough conference where everybody is big, everybody is skilled and everybody can skate," Oliver said. "If you are not keeping up with that, it's going to be tough to make some progress in the standings. You have to be smart about your decisions because you can't just have big guys across the board who can't play. We've made a lot of headway the last year and a half about being bigger, harder to play against and harder to handle in the offensive zone."
We've seen a huge difference, literally, in the makeup of the San Antonio roster before the season and even during. Think back a couple years ago when the Monsters were known as a small speedy team, now every opposing commentator marvels at what a bunch of brutes the Rampage have become. Last game SA dressed a grand total of 2 players under 6' (Aggz & Hubie) and 11 guys at 6'3 or more. The key part I thought was saying that you can't have a bunch of meatheads who can't play (sort of like SA has now in a few cases). They've gotten big, now it's time to get big and better.
Joey Hishon missed Tuesday's game with the flu
Dennis Everberg recovered from the flu and played vs BAK
Ben Street is now officially on the roster but won't be in the lineup for another few weeks while he rehabs from a chest injury several months ago. He's been skating solo lately but no timetable on rejoining the team for practice
Duncan Siemens continues to recover from UBI in San Antonio
The NHL trade deadline looms on Monday. There are a few things that go with that, NHL rosters expand but the teams are limited to 4 non-injury-related moves from then to the end of the season. The following guys are on expiring contracts with Colorado:
Cheek (FTW, injured)
Even though AHL contract trades are rare they do happen occasionally. Here are ours:
It's tough to gauge who's not in the plans going forward and who out of those is worth enough elsewhere to go to the bother of a late-season try-out. I'd say the guys that could generate some interest are Aggz, Everberg, Gormley, Hish, Martinsen and Borna. Siemens would be there too if he wasn't injured. Not saying all or any of them won't be back next year but those would be the guys I wouldn't be surprised seeing in a swap.
With Chris Wagner getting claimed off waivers the Avs now have an extra contract spot so it's possible some trade they make might include someone that will be placed in San Antonio. It's going to be nice to get this out of the way so we can start talking about when JT Compher and Sergei Boikov are going to get their ATOs.
The Komets lost a close one to ECHL top dog Missouri on Wednesday. Alex Belzile and Gabe Beaupre of all people scored goals. Corbs, Bourkie and Mason had assists. Trevor Cheek missed the game with a rib injury. Spencer Martin took the loss 4-3
Since a 4-game losing streak in mid-January, the Rampage have neither won nor lost more than 2 games in a row and have hovered within a game of .500. Even with several periods of good offensive pressure the shots on goal were few and far between while the Condors shot at will making the final tally 38-19. As I’ve said many times, I don’t like blaming the officials for losses but there was an obvious bias against San Antonio, BAK had one penalty early in the game while the Rampage got called for 5 including 3 in a row for Big Z. Not pretty.
For silver linings, Mikko had a lovely goal off a slick breakout pass from Everberg. Dan Maggio scored the 2nd goal, his first in maybe a year, which seemed to juice up a pretty flat squad. Reto Berra had another solid performance saving 35/38. On the other hand, the defense continues to struggle massively, none of the 3 pairs work as designed or can effectively exit the d-zone. Not that the forwards in general are a big help breaking out, but it has to start somewhere and there just isn’t anyone on the back end that can make a decent pass right now. Nate Guenin hasn’t been as good as I’d hoped, I really thought he would look better in the AHL. The second BAK goal was deflected off his skate past Yogi, add that to the goal he tipped past Roman on Friday night and you’re left scratching your head.
Not much to preview here, Rampage need to win all 3 at all costs. San Diego has beaten them all 4 times they've played, Bakersfield dominated them on Tuesday and Stockton has smoked them twice recently. No problem.
The additions of Troy Bourke and Andreas Martinsen are interesting because that hints that perhaps someone is injured or ill that we don't know about. Dan Weiss will let us know what's up later in the day. Yogi will make his 3rd and 4th starts, I think I've heard against SD and BAK, in his conditioning assignment. Unless he's waived and sent back this is it for him in Silver and Black. Of course with this being the weekend before the deadline all kinds of wacky things can and probably will happen to SA and their opponents.
Thompson – Clish – Borna
Evs – Mikko – Aggz
Schumi – Draz – Pete
Mags – Big Sam – Bordy
Z – Guenin
Gorms – Clark
Hubie – Max
Scratched: Hish (flu), Hamonic (nacho), Duncan (UBI)
Friday night at San Diego 10:00pm in the ET
Saturday night at Bakersfield 10:00pm in the ET
Sunday afternoon at Stockton 7:00pm in the ET
All games on Ticket 760
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Friday's game starts well after the Avs Alumni game, Saturday's starts around 2nd inter of the Stadium Series game and Sunday's is free and clear so stop by and support your prospects and Nate Guenin. Enjoy!