Barons Struggle To Play Full Game, Lose To San Antonio

The Rampage and the Barons were both coming off losses the night prior to meeting on Saturday in the heart of Oklahoma City. While the Barons carried over their solid final period from the night before, the Rampage would continue the so-so doldrums. But quickly the script would flip and the Rampage would out man, out muscle, and flat out dominate the back half of the game on route to a 5-4 victory.

Jason Williams would score a goal, assisted on by Andrew Miller and Tyler Pitlick, that would give the Barons the lead early on – something that has yet to happen his season. The shot was stout, and actually tore through a seam in the twine at the back of the net. A couple of consecutive penalties were killed by the Barons, as the Rampage struggled to get something going. To end the period, Racine would receive a five minute match penalty that would extend into the second. The stick work of San Antonio was really soggy, and OKC would challenge them in a mighty way.

The Rampage would start the second period with some zip, and it gave Laurent Brossoit and the defenders a workout. Some back and forth penalty shenanigans by both clubs (a double minor from Tyler Pitlick, etc.) led to multiple power plays for OKC. A Rampage unsportsmanlike infraction would allow Jason Williams to score his second of the night. A good screen in front of the net by Mitch Moroz would allow Oscar Klefbom to laser a long distance shot to score a goal of his own only seconds later. Clinging to a healthy 3-0 lead, Shane O’Brien would exit the box (following his unsportsmanlike penalty), and he would receive a pass, make a heckuva move to beat Brossoit. Musil would have a defensive hiccup as Vincent Trocheck would sneak around him, and through Brossoit to make things interesting with 11:00 left in the second. Now 3-2, OKC seemed disoriented, but crept back to right standing. Headed towards the end of the period Iiro Pakarinen would score his second goal of the season with an assist to Klefbom. The Rampage would net one of their own with time expiring. Suddenly the sticks were active, and goaltenders were abused. The second ends with OKC on top, 4-3

The third period was down right awful for OKC, and the lead would quickly dicipate. Having issues staying out of the box, the Rampage would score two with an extra skater to overtake the squad from OKC. Ryan Martindale, in a bit of a redemptive role, scored the equalizer to add insult to injury. Passing was abysmal for the Barons, and it was bound to catch up with them. It did.

In summation the Barons have yet to put together a full sixty minutes of hockey, and this has become a common theme with OKC for two seasons. The PP works, the PK is good for the most part, but the youth and prospect quality of Todd Nelson’s squad deems it difficult to get a grasp early on on whether or not this is a good team or just a possibly good team. I think they are good, even potentially great, despite a 5-4 loss on Saturday night.

Lineups for each team:

Pakarinen-Williams-Pitlick
Moroz-Lander-Miller
C. Hamilton-Yakimov-Pinizzotto
Kessy-Ewanyk-Ford

Simpson-Oesterle
klefbom-Gernat
Aulie-Musil

Brossoit

Wilson-Trocheck-Butler
McFarland-Shore-Grimaldi
Brickley-Olson-Mancari
Turgeon-Martindale-Shaw

Zanon-Petrovic
O’Brien-Kampfer
Racine-Parlett

Michael Houser

By The Numbers Game 48: San Antonio at Oklahoma City

SAN ANTONIO AT OKLAHOMA CITY
RAMPAGE BARONS
 
2-1-0-0 RECORD 0-1-1-0
1-0-0-0 VS. 0-0-1-0
2-1-0-0 LAST 10 0-1-1-0
0-1-0-0 STREAK 0-1-0-0
3-0 L VS. UTI LAST GAME 2-3 L VS. TEX
RANKS
8TH LEAGUE 28TH
22ND OFFENSE 23RD
10TH DEFENSE 20TH
23RD PP% 7TH
27TH PK% 22ND
SA OVERALL STATS OKC
4 POINTS 1
.667 RECORD % .250
.667 HOME WINNING % 0.000
0.000 AWAY WINNING % 0.500
0.000 SHOOTOUT WINNING % 0.000
-0.33 GOAL DIFFERENTIAL PER GAME -1.00
7.67 SHOT DIFFERENTIAL PER GAME 2.00
10.0 PIM PER GAME 5.0
10.7 OPPONENT PIM PER GAME 9.0
SA OFFENSIVE STATS OKC
2.00 GOALS PER GAME 2.00
1.67 ES GOALS PER GAME 1.00
0.33 PP GOALS PER GAME 1.00
32.33 SHOTS PER GAME 32.00
16.17 SHOTS PER GOAL 16.00
6.19% TEAM SHOOTING % 6.25%
7.1% POWER PLAY % 22.2%
SA DEFENSIVE STATS OKC
2.33 GOALS AGAINST PER GAME 3.00
1.33 ES GOALS AGAINST PER GAME 2.50
1.00 PP GOALS AGAINST PER GAME 0.50
24.67 SHOTS AGAINST PER GAME 30.00
10.57 SHOTS AGAINST PER GOAL 10.00
9.46% OPP TEAM SHOOTING % 10.00%
76.9% PENALTY KILL % 80.0%
SA GOALIE STATS OKC
.905 SAVE % .900
2.29 GOALS AGAINST AVERAGE 2.92
0 SHUTOUTS 0
GOALIE RECORD GAA SV%
Michael Houser 1-0-0 1.89 .920
Dan Ellis 1-1-0 2.51 .898
       
Laurent Brossoit 0-1-0 3.08 .900
Frans Tuohimaa 0-0-0 0.00 0.000

Barons Come Close, Lose To Stars 3-2

Hockey’s opening night in Bricktown 2014 was bound to be interesting. A matchup against the Calder Cup champs whom, by the way, swept the Barons in the first round en route to that same Cup always makes for a grand stage. The Stars, a formidable opponent regardless of the season, entered the Cox Center on Friday night with a well-earned bounce in their step. Three periods of highly entertaining hockey were had, but the Barons would come up just short for the second straight game.

A week prior the Barons played a tough San Antonio team who have skill and speed. This pushed the game to overtime, but ultimately only churned out a point for the Barons. Considering the team’s youthfulness, this was a profitable outcome. I’d say the game in OKC, although a regulation loss, was equally as profitable.

Todd Nelson is cautiously aware of the need for quick starts in the opening ten minutes of games. On Friday night the Barons looked red hot for the first 1:30 of play, but then quickly unravelled in an avalanche of un-organization.

Some lukewarm defending and some nervous goaltending gave the Texas Stars an early two goal lead. Starting goaltender, Laurent Brossoit would let in two semi-bad-ones, but received little support in front of him from his supporting cast. The giant gulp taken by all in the Cox Center would only be the dry $1 hot dogs because Brossoit would end the night looking much better than he had on the game’s opening goals.

Following goals by the Stars the Barons really started to seal the gaps, find offensive seams, and turn the ship around. An interference penalty mid-way through the second period earned defenseman Jordan Oesterle a power play goal on a whale of a shot from the top of the key. Nearly two minutes later, at even strength, Justin Williams would wind up, take a long shot of his own, and beat Stars’ goaltender Jack Campbell for the Barons second goal of the night. The change in overall play was back-stopped by better defensive puck movement, the continued goodness of Laurent Brossoit, and some fine work by the forwards. Iiro Pakarinen, and his linemates, played really good high energy minutes that drove the play through the remainder of the period.

The third period would again have the Barons playing from behind. With under 5:00 to go in the game, an unsportsmanlike penalty after the whistle to David Musil would eventually net the Stars their only power play goal of the evening. This hurt, but the Barons courageously fought back.

As the third period soldiered on Todd Nelson squeezed some goodness out of his fourth line featuring Khaira down the middle and Kessy and Ewanyk on the wings. The threesome nearly tied it more than once as the Barons, from top to bottom, charged with desperation. In the end, the highest chance came with only a few second left, but the puck landed awkwardly on the stick of a Baron, and the game would end with the Stars outlasting the Barons in Oklahoma City.

Oklahoma City Lineup:

R. Hamilton-Williams-Pitlick
Pakarinen-Lander-Miller
C. Hamilton-Yakimov-Ford
Ewanyk-Khaira-Kessy

Klefbom-Gernat
Simpson-Oesterle
Aulie-Musil

Brossoit

Notes:

– Brossoit had a really bad start. The Barons had over a minute of really great offense, then the wheels came off. This led to a heavy load for the defense. It pushed Brossoit into making big saves. He’d give up two goals in what were basically the first three shots the Stars took. He’d get so much better once the jitters wore off.

– The top two lines were really great tonight, but there’s is a baseline to this team that really has me excited. The fourth line gave the Stars fits for the final 8:00 of the game. As their play got better, Nelson gave them more to do. I continue to believe that Khaira needs a much more active role for more of the game. Time will tell.

– Iiro Pakarinen is a bit of a revelation two games in. He knows how to position himself in front of the net, and champions the fight to get there. Yet, he’s defensively responsible when the puck rushes up the ice. This was evident more than ever in the second period onward. He’s a dandy.

– The top power play unit continues to be five forwards (Pitlick, Miller, Lander, Ford, Hamilton), but after that it goes back to a 1D 4F setup (Gernat/Oesterle the rotating D). The 1-3-1 formation with five forwards gives up a ton of chances, and this is going to have to be tweaked.

– Defensively Simpson-Oesterle were very good. Meanwhile Aulie-Musil struggled greatly. Klefbom-Gernat was somewhere in the middle. Klefbom’s passing skills have greatly improved since last season. This was noticeable mostly on the up-ice passes. I think that pair gets better with time, but like a deep safety in football they can’t let players constantly blow by them. Gotta seal up the edges.

– Opening night crowd of just over 4,500 was decent, and I hope Saturday it swells a bit more.

Workin’ For The Weekend: Oklahoma City Comes Home For Two “I’m Gonna Be Strong”

I was born in 1980. That same year the world discovered Cyndi Lauper before she was Cyndi Lauper. Nowadays, when perusing VH1, you might stumble upon Ms. Lauper every now and again, and think to yourself, “Who is this woman, and what happened to her?”. At 61 years of age she still balances the fine line between art and oddity not only publicly, but privately as well. This mirrors her career spanning nearly 35 years.

To be totally honest, I often find myself singing Lauper tunes. They are heavily crafted to be ear worms of the highest level. For that, the writing and execution of some of Lauper’s greatest hits should truly be lauded. “Girls Just Want To Have Fun”, “She Bop”, “Time After Time”, “True Colors”, and even that crazy ‘Goonies’ song point to the highly skilled writing of a truly smart human being.

Lauper had an usual voice, instantly recognizable, but certainly not common among female performers of the day. While the glam hit full stride in the early 80’s, Lauper was okay being slightly different in both her approach and her demonstration of art. But where did it all begin?

One of my absolute vinyl treasures (one I actually own) is a first printing of the band Blue Angel, and their debut album titled the same. It was 1980, new wave and punk were sort of congealing, and some of the greatest pop-rock was formed. The band was retro in dress, in theme, but certainly in song. The leader of the pack was none other than Cyndi Lauper, a fresh faced girl from Queens, New York.

Long story short, the band only existed for a year or two following poor album sales, a lawsuit from a former manager, and some health issues from Lauper. Continuously lauded for her vocal gymnastics, record labels were craving to sign Cyndi Lauper to a solo deal, which she denied simply because she believed in Blue Angel. After things went south, Lauper waitressed, worked other odd jobs, submitted a solo demo, and the rest is history.

Despite the crash and burn project of Blue Angel, I still find the album as a whole a magical rockabilly journey – a side of Lauper I actually prefer.

Take the torch song, “I’m Gonna Be Strong” for example. Originally record by Frankie Lane in 1963, Lauper simply owns this track, modernizing it in a way that feels fresh, original, and so very 1980’s. The band backing her is simply on point. And despite the majority of the album being written by Lauper herself, this “cover” truly stands out.

It is a song about losing someone or something that you love dearly. The song taps out at under 3:00, but when it ends you wish there were more. The crux of the song really relies on the vocal and instrumental crescendo working hand in hand. By golly they nail it. The hurt, the pain, the recovery that “I’m gonna be strong, And let you go along, And take it like a man” are bruising if not revealing.

The Oklahoma City Barons have played one game. That is all it took to get a fresh look at this year’s squad. In summation, the team is exactly that – fresh. And as they travel along this journey we call an AHL season, we are going to see a constant rotation of players throughout the lineup, until the fresh becomes familiar. Don’t worry about it, instead proclaim “I’m Gonna Be Strong”.

After a 3-2 overtime loss in San Antonio last Saturday evening, the Oklahoma City Barons return home to play the Texas Stars and the same Rampage team over the weekend. The Friday and Saturday schedule is going to make for an exciting two day event as the Oklahoma City Barons celebrate five years as a member of the American Hockey League.

The 1-0-0-0 Texas Stars defeated the Iowa Wild nearly a week ago with goals coming from McKenzie, Dowling, Honka and Klingberg. Some familiar names in there as well as some new, and dangerous ones. Keep in mind that Curtis McKenzie is in Dallas to spot the ailing Val Nichushkin. They are sturdy defensively, strong on the puck, and sometimes surprisingly skilled. This has always made for good interactions with the Oklahoma City Barons, and I suspect that Friday’s opener will be more of the same.

They have always been well coached, and Derek Laxdal of Edmonton Oil Kings fame, is no exception.

Most recent Texas Stars lines/pairs/goalie:

McKenzie-Morin-Ritchie
Glennie-Dowling-Ranford
Stransky-Faksa-Henderson
Troock-Peters-Rallo

Gaunce-Klingberg
Meech-Honka
Fortunus-Jokipakka

Rynnas

The San Antonio Rampage are 2-0-0-0 to start the season, and have done so by scoring six goals, and only allowing four. Their good start is promising, but they still have issues. As we say on Saturday, they have players like Rocco Grimaldi that are speedy, and thus a mountain-sized headache for defensive players. The way you beat them is in the “toughs” department, and I don’t mean fighting. Irro Pakarinen and Ryan Hamilton scored goals by crossing directly in front of the goaltender. This “sweet spot” is where the Barons will need to attack to beat quality goaltenders. This one probably has the same look and feel to the game on Saturday, but hopefully with a better outcome.

Via Nathan Mallet at Running With The Herd, “The Good – Overall team play. Team is fast and relentless on puck pursuit. Defense looks strong and both goalies were very good. The Bad – Alex Petrovic and Jonathan Racine didn’t have a good weekend defensively.”

Most recent San Antonio lines/pairs/goalie:

Yogan-Shore-Grimaldi
Wilson-Trocheck-Butler
McFarland-Olson-Mancari
Brickley-Martindale-Shaw

Zanon-Petrovic
Racine-Kampfer
O’Brien-Weegar

Michael Houser

The game starts at 7:00pm in Bricktown. Get your tickets now!

By The Numbers Game 35: Texas at Oklahoma City

TEXAS AT OKLAHOMA CITY
STARS BARONS
 
1-0-0-0 RECORD 0-0-1-0
0-0-0-0 VS. 0-0-0-0
1-0-0-0 LAST 10 0-0-1-0
1-0-0-0 STREAK 0-0-1-0
4-2 W VS. IA LAST GAME 2-3 OTL VS. SA
RANKS
8TH LEAGUE 27TH
8TH OFFENSE 26TH
8TH DEFENSE 21ST
7TH PP% 9TH
14TH PK% 7TH
TEX OVERALL STATS OKC
2 POINTS 1
1.000 RECORD % 0.500
1.000 HOME WINNING % #DIV/0!
#DIV/0! AWAY WINNING % 0.500
0.000 SHOOTOUT WINNING % 0.000
2.00 GOAL DIFFERENTIAL PER GAME -1.00
14.00 SHOT DIFFERENTIAL PER GAME -5.00
16.0 PIM PER GAME 2.0
16.0 OPPONENT PIM PER GAME 8.0
TEX OFFENSIVE STATS OKC
4.00 GOALS PER GAME 2.00
2.00 ES GOALS PER GAME 1.00
2.00 PP GOALS PER GAME 1.00
36.00 SHOTS PER GAME 25.00
9.00 SHOTS PER GOAL 12.50
11.11% TEAM SHOOTING % 8.00%
25.0% POWER PLAY % 25.0%
TEX DEFENSIVE STATS OKC
2.00 GOALS AGAINST PER GAME 3.00
1.00 ES GOALS AGAINST PER GAME 3.00
1.00 PP GOALS AGAINST PER GAME 0.00
22.00 SHOTS AGAINST PER GAME 30.00
11.00 SHOTS AGAINST PER GOAL 10.00
9.09% OPP TEAM SHOOTING % 10.00%
87.5% PENALTY KILL % 100.0%
TEX GOALIE STATS OKC
.909 SAVE % .900
2.00 GOALS AGAINST AVERAGE 2.84
0 SHUTOUTS 0

GOALIE RECORD GAA SV%
Jack Campbell 0-0-0 0.00 0.000
Jusi Rynnas 1-0-0 2.00 .909
Laurent Brossoit 0-0-0 0.00 0.000
Frans Tuohimaa 0-0-0 0.00 0.000

Some Up, Some Down, A Day Of Roster Changes

Photo by Steven Christy

As the Oklahoma City Barons march towards their home opener on Friday evening at 7:00pm, the whirling carousel of change again strikes warmly on the great plains. Announced today were a couple of things. Richard Bachman has been recalled to Edmonton to replace the groin-injured Viktor Fasth. Also recalled is winger Steve Pinizzotto, whom the Oilers continue to love out of training camp. In return the Barons receive Bogdan Yakimov after a brief stint (one game) against LA. Meanwhile, Frans Tuohimaa is headed to Oklahoma City to backup NOW starting goaltender Laurent Brossoit.

The early reports are that Fasth, Nugent-Hopkins, and Eberle are ailing. Not a good threesome to be gimpy. Three games in, three losses (but an OT no-one-loses point), and suddenly three injuries. This is not good news, no it isn’t.

The whirlwind of emergency call-ups is truly unpredictable, but four plus years of farming the Oilers has been anything but unpredictable in this department. The injuries, they are a comin’. You don’t know the names, but you can almost pinpoint the when and to whom. Yet things will remain positive in Oklahoma City as they own a really good roster, with good potential, and a good coaching staff. They have done this before, things will be fine.

Enjoy the players gaining NHL minutes. Enjoy a glance at Yakimov in person on Friday as well as the ECHLer Frans Tuohimaa who recently played a ECHL preseason game, faced nearly 40 shots, only let in a goal. Friday is the day. Won’t you join us, Oklahoma City?

Richard Bachman To Replace Injured Viktor Fasth In Edmonton

Photo by Steven Christy

UPDATE: Per those at practice today. Richard Bachman is indeed headed out. University of Central Oklahoma goaltender filling in as number two likely until a true backup can be brought in.

The Edmonton Oilers are three games in. Jordan Eberle and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins missed last night’s game with undisclosed ailments. Viktor Fasth was plauged by a groin injury after playing through 15:00, giving up three goals on eleven shots. It’s not the start the Oilers wanted nor is it helpful to OKC, but in the end, we remember there is depth on the farm. That’s good news.

The OKC Barons have played one single game to date in the 14-15 minor league campaign. The lopsided scheduling tactics of a “weekend” league have drug the Barons to San Antonio for game one, then back home nearly a full week later to play a Friday/Saturday two-some. They’ll face Texas on Friday, and San Antonio on Saturday. With the upcoming games comes a deep breathe, and kind words (although forced) for the Oilers. It appears that in Fasth’s absence (currently listed as day-to-day) that Richard Bachman is the candidate to replace him in the NHL roster.

Losing Bachman is a big deal because he is the team’s rock. In game one he played a full 63:00, let in three goals on thirty shots, and forced the game into overtime. This secured the Barons at least one point, and gave us some encouraging thoughts. He did this throughout the entire duration of 13-14.

In comes Laurent Brossoit as number one, a relatively new face to the OKC Barons (traded for Olivier Roy, seems like the Oilers won that trade thus far). He played eight bumpy games in OKC last season, but 35 really good ones in Bakersfield. He has good movement, quick feet, increasingly strong net presence, but lord does he give up a ton of rebounds. But he knows this, and he knows how to fix it. The goaltending coaches, both from Edmonton and in OKC, really worked with him in the preseason. Rebound control came up more than once, and anyone who has watched him play knows that this has been an issue.

Goaltender number two is likely Tyler Bunz, who was recently assigned to the now ECHL-turned squad in Wichita. He hasn’t played game minutes in quite some time after fracturing his larynx last season. THIS might keep him from getting minutes, and thus Ty Rimmer comes a knockin’. Either way, the prospect level of goaltending on the farm becomes REALLY important, and REALLY high profile.

A side note. I always like Bachman playing against the Stars, a team he played for, within an organization that drafted him in 2006. He always plays “up”.

In the end, good luck to Richard Bachman. He deserves the time. He has earned it. Coach Todd Nelson often refers to him as “an NHL goaltender playing in the AHL” and I suppose we will find out if that is true in the coming days.

On The Other Yak & The Only Klefbom

Photo by Steven Christy

UPDATE: 

Recently (yesterday to be precise, Watson) the Edmonton Oilers called upon the services of Bogdan Yakimov while also sending defender Oscar Klefbom to the Oklahoma City Barons. Both moves are rather interesting, but neither are surprising.

First up, Yakimov. We here in Oklahoma City haven’t had a chance to see him play gameday minutes. The the loss at San Antonio on Saturday, where he centered a third line with Moroz and Pinizzotto his wingers, was an exceptional debut. He had the game’s first penalty for holding a stick, but it neither cost his team nor felt overtly awful. It very well could have been a non-call, but why make something of nothing or nothing of something or something, maybe nothing. Regardless, Yakimov looked impressive in the minutes he played which weren’t entirely low.

I mentioned the play of Moroz being “very sturdy” in the recent game recap, and I think that is in some part a product of Yakimov being such a confident skater down the center. He sees the ice very well, has a bit of a testy side, but has a high skill level that still surprises me from time to time. In game one of the season he beat out Jujhar Khaira for third line minutes, and essentially pushed Travis Ewanyk off the roster momentarily. That’s good for the Russian born, N. American rookie who has a good amount of potential.

The Oilers have hinted (at the time I write this) that perhaps Nuge is injured. Sweet mother let’s hope not, but as they travel it might be nice to have Bogdan ready to go when necessary. His absence from the OKC lineup isn’t all that problematic, after all they still have Ewanyk and a host of other players willing to be centermen.

Then there’s the demotion of Klefbom which doesn’t feel entirely like a demotion. As he watched the first two games of the Oilers season from the press box, we all wondered collectively why he was there in the first place. Experience? The good popcorn? Not sure. But he, like so many other defensive prospects, needs to hit the ice regularly to iron out the fluffy edges. This is a good move as he will face high strength competition in Texas and San Antonio for much of the month of October. He will probably slot in well with the already “processing” defensive pairs, and perhaps he gets a bit of a minutes nudge in his return. This, of course, gives the Barons an extra defender. What to do with CJ Ludwig, the Barons only right-shooting defender? Time will tell.

The Barons play at home on Friday, and we will get a good look at Klefbom as well as the new center lineup. Don’t think for a moment that the forward lines won’t change a bit too. I fully expect a different roster in the six days between games. That’s how the cookie crumbles.

Oklahoma City Defeated In Overtime By San Antonio

The Oklahoma City Barons traveled to San Antonio to face the Rampage in what was the team’s first game of the regular season. Facing only opponents from Texas for the entire month, OKC nestled in to their gameplan against a team they’d see regularly moving forward.

Coming off a heroic finale against Iowa the night before, San Antonio would switch to Michael Houser in net. Considered Dan Ellis’ backup, Houser and company would play very well against the unorganized Barons. The game was exciting, but ultimately the misgivings of a young squad were too many as OKC would steal a point, but lose in overtime.

Former Flame, Brett Olson scored the games first goal as he exposed some defensive problems for the Barons directly in front of starting goaltender Richard Bachman.

Following a closing the hand on the puck penalty, Ryan Hamilton would receive a point blank pass from Iiro Pakarinen and slam home the tying goal towards the end of period one.

Bachman and Houser were both pretty sturdy to start the game, and indeed would continue the trend throughout.

Again the teams would trade goals in a period with San Antonio notching one first. Centerman Vincent Trochek would put his team up by one while the Barons stood by and watched him jump into position.

Mugging for the puck around the boards, Andrew Miller would win the puck battle, pass to Martin Marincin who would take a shot. That shot rebounded off Houser and on to the stick of Iiro Pakarinen who tied the game at two. Iiro’s second points of the night, and his first AHL goal, helped propel the Barons through the second period.

It would take a scoreless third, a huge save by Richard Bachman, and some very lucky moments to send the game in to OT. Rocco Grimaldi, scoring his first goal of his pro career in San Anronio, would nudge out the Barons on this night, and a secure the win for his team. The Rampage defeat the Barons 3-2 in overtime.

Lineups:

R.Hamilton-Williams-Pitlick
Pakarinen-Lander-Miller
Moroz-Yakimov-Pinizzotto
Kessy-Khaira-Ford

Aulie-Musil
Marincin-Gernat
Oesterle-Simpson

Bachman

Yogan-Shore-Grimaldi
Wilson-Trocheck-Butler
McFarland-Olson-Mancari
Brickley-Martindale-Shaw

Zanon-Petrovic
Racine-Kampfer
O’Brien-Weegar

Houser

The Barons went 1/4 on the PP, gave up one early penalty themselves. Nelson displayed the five forwards 1-3-1 unit that consisted of Lander, Williams, Pitlick, Miller, Ford. It gave up at least two near shot handed chances, and that’s expected in a scheme like that. This isn’t new for Nelson, it’s just going to take better execution.

By comparison, the 4 on 4 overtime lineup was 3F-1D, and more protective in nature. It ended up costing the Barons in the odd-man rushes. That’s gonna need some work.

Iiro Pakarinen looked really good. How do Finnish hockey players know where to stand in front of the net? DNA!

Mitch Moroz was impressive in limited minutes. Hung on to the puck well, managed his moments beautifully, and even had two really good setups. He’s a keeper.

Defensively it was a stew of question marks. Marincin and Gernat really struggled, got better, struggled again. This is to be expected. One player, however, who looked more right than wrong was Dillon Simpson. Had a really nice game saving breakup of a rush up ice care of Rocco Grimaldi who will speed around you if necessary.

Richard Bachman continues to be Nelson’s “NHLer in the AHL” as he stopped 27/30 including 11 in the first period.

OKC gets nearly a week off before hosting the Stars next Friday.

Congrats to Arcobello (goal and assist) and Hunt (goal) for their roles in last night’s Oilers game. Despite the loss, good to see these two get accolades, but more importantly produce.