The beloved Rampage's Rodeo Road Trip gets into full swing in beautiful North Carolina this week with a mid-week pair against the Checkers. San Antonio has alternated wins and losses in the last 6 games, if they plan on making a move in the standings some sort of streak is necessary.
- Cody Corbett was recalled from Ft Wayne yesterday, I assume because of Zadorov's injury
The healthy roster didn't last long, Nikita Zadorov left Saturday's game after the 1st period with LBI. Corbett's recall indicates he might miss some time.
Jack Skille has a concussion so Colorado might be contemplating bringing up a forward soon
Ben Street will see doctors in Colorado tomorrow to evaluate his chest injury and possibly give the go ahead to start skating again.
Andrew Agozzino might be close, he will travel with the team this month and return ASAP
After his 20 year old season, the Avs scouting and development staff gave Reid Petryk a couple of games on an ATO with Lake Erie. They didn't sign him and he went back for an overage season with the dominant Edmonton Oil Kings, winning the Memorial Cup with future pro teammate Cody Corbett. Over the 2014 summer he was invited to Dev Camp and ended up with an AHL contract after training camp. By the end of last season he had worked his way up from Ft Wayne all the way to 1st line duties with Agozzino and Street and was a part of the ridiculous production we saw from that group. Despite showing some potential, the Avs didn't offer him an ELC and he settled into another AHL contract with the Rampage this season. As much as I liked Pete's game, I agree that 13 points in 35 games probably wasn't enough to commit an NHL contract.
This season started out cold for the 6'1 212 pound Right Wing, 0 points in October, a hot streak of 7 points in 10 games in November then more cold with zilch between Thanksgiving and late December. There was an injury in there somewhere but still, not the kind of production that gets one noticed.
Since December 20th Pete's been red hot with 21 points (9G/12A) and 42 shots on goal in his last 21 games. Maybe this is just another hot streak but I tend to doubt it after seeing him play for the last couple of years. The scoring is a result of all the things he's done since turning pro: hard forechecking, excellent puck retrieval skills, stout defense. Now I'm seeing puck skills to go along with the diligent grind work. I would liken him a lot to Blake Comeau on the Avs.
Three years in a row the Avs org has had an eye on Petryk, this might be the one that he earns that Entry Level Contract. I don't think he's topped out yet and if the Avs don't offer one there's a good possibility someone else will.
Troy Bourke made his Komets debut and promptly scored in the 1st period. He also later added an assist and another goal that was unfortunately called off in the Komets 3-1 victory over Quad City Saturday.
Alex Belzile also scored and Trevor Cheek had an assist. Coach Gary Graham decided to put Bourke/Belzile/Cheek together as a line to quickly integrate them into the lineup.
The Rampage got a big win in their final home game of the month 5-2 over the Stars. The 1st line was superb, Mikko Rantanen had a goal and 3 assists, Reid Petryk scored twice and Dennis Everberg put up a pair of assists. Despite going 0-3 with a shortie against in a stretch early in the 2nd period, the power play was powerful enough to go 3-6 overall. Garrett Thompson continued to make the most of his callup with his second goal in SA, Joey Hishon came back to the lineup once again and had an excellent feed to Mikko for his goal and Max Noreau had 1G/1A on the PP.
On the flipside, there was a lot pretty poor play overall from San Antonio. The defense in general was atrocious, Zadorov and Siemens were probably the best overall and they played average at best. The top pair of Gormley & Clark are terrifying all over the ice, Max Noreau produces very well on PP but struggles mightily 5v5 and Hubie always sucks, on the ice for both goals against as usual. Luckily Texas’ defense was much worse. Roman Will looks good on the scoresheet but he battled the puck all night, lots of fumbles and wild rebounds that the Stars couldn’t take advantage of. The story of the game was basically that the Rampage 1st liners had their shit together while everyone else did not.
The Rampage continued their yo-yo trend between .500 and a game below with a loss at Cedar Park center Saturday. A lackluster 1st ended with the Stars in front 3-0 and they never lost the lead. Borna Rendulic had a good game for the first time since missing a few due to injury, 2 wicked goals plus 7 shots. Other than that it was pretty unremarkable, a schedule loss became just that.
The big news is the injury to Nikita Zadorov who missed the 2nd & 3rd periods with a case of LBI. Never saw what happened and I re-watched the end of the 1st. He was involved with the play for the Stars goal with 45 secs left but stayed out for the faceoff. Went off on a change with about 15 seconds left in the period looking just fine. My wild uninformed guess is that it’s something minor that they wanted to be overly cautious with.
Charlotte has beaten the Rampage twice already this year, 4-3 and 3-2. Like their parent club, they play a grindy heavy possession style that does not match up well with San Antonio's weaknesses. Given the defense's recent struggles that will likely be amplified by Zadorov being replaced by Corbett or Hamonic, these could be ugly games unless someone besides the 1st line can start generating scoring chances. Despite what's listed below, both weekend games ended up with Hishon centering the 1st line with Petryk going to the 2nd and Smitty moving to center there.
Lines from both weekend games:
Evs – Mikko – Pete
Draz – Hish – Smitty
Thompson – Clish – Borna
Schumi – Big Sam – Bordy
Gormley – Clark
Z – Max
Duncan – Hubie
Scratches: Mags, Hamonic
Monday night at Charlotte 7pm in the ET
Wednesday night at Charlotte 7pm in the ET
All games on Ticket 760
A weekend in California with the Barracuda & Heat
* * * * *
Neither game conflicts with the Avs so stop by and support your prospects. Enjoy!