Hockey News

AHL Morning Skate: May 11, 2024 |

With the Columbus Blue Jackets in transition and in the process of hiring a general manager for next season, there is significant emphasis on the Cleveland Monsters making a long Calder Cup Playoff run. Jobs in Columbus could be open next season, and Cleveland’s roster knows it well.

Goalkeeper Jet Greaves he is one of those players. Selected for the AHL All-Star Classic this season, the undrafted 23-year-old Greaves also played in nine games with the Blue Jackets and posted a .908 save percentage. With a 30-12-4 record to go along with a 2.93 goals-against average and .910 save percentage in the regular season for the Monsters, he now has a chance to solidify his standing in the organization further with a strong postseason.

The third-year pro looks around Cleveland’s locker room and sees the same growth in his young teammates.

“I’m happy to see a lot of the guys I came with playing big roles on this team,” Greaves told reporters last night after the Monsters eliminated Belleville in Game 4 of the North Division semifinal series. “We have a really close team, and I think that helps us get on the same page and get better and better as the year goes on. I think we’re seeing that right now, and we want to continue that.”

After losing the first two games of their top-seeded Central Division semifinal series at Cedar Park last week, the Milwaukee Admirals faced the possibility of a preseason exit.

But they consoled themselves by returning home to the UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena, where they won 5-3 in Game 3 on Wednesday and continued last night. A rookie forward Zach L’Heureux gave up two first-period goals 47 seconds apart, and the Admirals won 4-1 to force a decisive Game 5 against Texas on Sunday.

And it’s at home, the advantage the Admirals earned by taking the division title. They had 5,300 fans in the building for Game 4, and the Admirals were listening.

“They’re loud,” L’Heureux told reporters. “They are engaged to be married. For us players, you can’t ask for much better than that.”

Now the Admirals have a chance to give those fans something to talk about.

“It’s never easy to go down twice and you have to win three in a row,” continued L’Heureux, “but when you go home in front of your fans, there’s no doubt, there’s no thought of, ‘Can we do this?’ We knew all along that it could happen. We have to go out there and play our game and never have doubts.

“We are motivated, we are still hungry and the end is far from over.”

Dan BylsmaHis hockey journey took him all over North America as a player and coach.

One of those places is California, where the head coach of the Coachella Valley Firebirds has built strong relationships as part of his three-plus years in the pro game. He played 429 NHL games, all coming with the Los Angeles Kings and Anaheim Ducks. He also played parts of two seasons with Long Beach in the former International Hockey League.

After defeating Calgary last night, Bylsma’s Firebirds will face Ontario in a California battle in the Pacific Division Finals. For the Coachella Valley team in only its second season, it will be a chance to take the fierce rivalry to the next level. It will also be the team’s first playoff series against an in-state opponent. The Firebirds will host Game 1 of the best-of-five series next Wednesday as the Reign make the 90-minute trip to Acrisure Arena.

“Rivals don’t usually start until you play the team in the playoffs, so I think you can start now,” Bylsma told reporters last night. “Playoff hockey creates rivalries, and there’s a huge growth in hockey (in Southern California) because of that rivalry between the Ducks and the Kings. Let’s hope that he will do the same thing.”

After a trip to the conference finals last year, the end came suddenly in sight for the Rochester Americans with a 5-2 loss at home to Syracuse last night.

“Me [told] how much I love them,” said coach Amerks Seth Appert he said in his post-game speech with his players, “how grateful I am to have the privilege of coaching them. A fake party. I had to stop practicing (only) twice throughout the year to yell at them. They practiced hard. They care about each other. They treat each other properly. They treat our support staff fairly.

“I’ve been coaching for 29 years, and you can love that every year, but that’s not how it works. This team had it, that’s why we became the team we became in the second half of the season. That’s why this stings even more. I’d like to win the Calder Cup, but more importantly I’d like to just coach them in practice this coming week.”

Captain of the Amerks Michael Mersch he ended his fourth season with the club by bringing the team within a goal midway through the second half before the Crunch came off. The end of the season hit him after that.

“These games, the playoffs, are like gold, especially as you get older,” said Mersch, who won the Calder Cup as a rookie in 2015. on the team and the support from the city, a special team that cares about each other and cares about playing for the Americans – all those things don’t happen every year.

“This is currently unheard of. It happened very quickly.”

― with files from Patrick Williams

Source link

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button