e young Zibanejad - will be game to hand

in Steckbrief 18.04.2019 05:43
von carrie201918 • 685 Beiträge

LONDON, Ont. -- The Guelph Storm want to eliminate the real possibility that the London Knights could come back to haunt them at the Memorial Cup. The Ontario Hockey League champion Storm insist theyre the ones with ample motivation to beat the host Knights on Wednesday, even though Guelph is already assured of a berth in Sundays final with a 2-0 record. Londons motivation doesnt require explanation. At 0-2, they must win the final game of the preliminary round in order to get into a tiebreaker game Thursday. If they dont, the hosts will be eliminated by the same team that knocked them out of the OHL playoffs April 11. A change to the MasterCard Memorial Cup schedule has made the improbable more possible. A day of rest between the semifinal and the final was incorporated into the tournament in 2007. Thats helped teams that have had to take the long way to the title. Twice in the last five years, a team that opened with two losses ran the table to win the Cup: the Windsor Spitfires in 2009 and the Shawinigan Cataractes in 2012. Both clubs staved off elimination in their final round-robin game, tiebreaker and semifinal en route to claiming the title. "Teams have done it and I think we have a team thats special like that and is able to achieve things like that," Knights captain Chris Tierney said. "Everyone is confident we can pull it off." Because of that extra day of rest, the bye to the final is not the nearly airtight advantage to winning the Cup it once was. Guelph doesnt want to face London on Sunday in their home rink riding the momentum of three wins in a row, including one against them. "We dont want to let these guys get back in the tournament and see them in the final if they get on a little roll here," Storm forward Zach Mitchell said. "Were going to try and put them out here. We dont want to let them hang around." The Storm relish having the upper hand against the Knights. London won the OHL championship in both 2013 and 2012, while Guelph was eliminated in the first round those years. "Back-to-back champions, you give a lot of beatings," Storm captain Matt Finn said. "The London Knights did that for a couple of years. "To be able to knock them out in the playoffs was great for us. To have a chance to knock them out of the Memorial Cup while theyre hosting is something we want to do because of the history." As explosive as the Storm are with 11 goals in two games, the Knights are also capable of pouring the puck into the net. London and Guelph both scored over 300 goals in the regular season. But the Knights have just two goals in two games and both were scored by defencemen. The Knights have been stopped on two penalty shots and are 0-for-8 on their power play. London has certainly had scoring chances, but havent yet recovered their touch around the net. "We looked at the first two games a little bit and we actually did outchance the teams in both games," forward Max Domi said. "It comes down to the details in terms of finishing around our own net, sharpening up our passes, making better decisions with the puck in terms of getting it in deep and being more disciplined. All that stuff kind of adds up to winning or losing hockey games." Theres also Londons unsettled goaltending situation. Anthony Stolarz was in net for the 1-0 loss to the Val-dOr Foreurs to open the tournament. He allowed three goals in two periods against the Edmonton Oil Kings, before he was replaced by Jake Patterson in a 5-2 loss. Head coach Dale Hunter had yet to inform his goalies Tuesday afternoon which would start in Wednesdays crucial game. Stolarz, a Philadelphia Flyers prospect, opened last years Memorial Cup in Saskatoon, but Patterson was in net for the semifinal loss to the eventual champion Halifax Mooseheads. Londons lineup features seven forwards from the team that both lost 2-1 in overtime to host Shawinigan in the 2012 final and suffered last years semifinal loss. "Nobody wants to feel that again," Knights defenceman Zach Bell said. "Everybody wants to be able to play some more junior hockey. They dont want to end it on a bad note." The Storm ousted the Knights in the second round of playoffs in five games. Stolarz didnt play in the series because he was serving an eight-game suspension handed down in the first round. Guelph and London were 3-3 against each other in the regular season. In seven of their 11 meetings so far this season, the winner has scored six or more goals. The Storm are comfortable in the role of villain at Budweiser Gardens and are ready to embrace that again Wednesday. "This city doesnt like us too much, especially after knocking them out in the playoffs," Finn said. "Theyre going to be looking to get one back on us. We dont want to let them back in. Theyre a team that can put the puck in the net. We need to limit their chances offensively and frustrate them." Bobby Baun Jersey . Brandon Morrow allowed five runs on six hits over three innings. He struck out two, walked one and hit a batter. Edwin Encarnacion had a two-out, bases loaded two-RBI double in the third inning. Mike Palmateer Jersey . Reimer told TSNs Mark Masters on Tuesday that he doesnt know if he will be moved leading up to the March 5 trade deadline but added he wasnt interested in discussing it. "Who knows whats going to happen on the horizon here and right now I dont know if I want to talk about it too much. http://www.officialmapleleafspro.com/Tim...e-leafs-jersey/. When the Dallas Mavericks needed to stop a Golden State rally in the fourth quarter, they looked for defensive help from the rookie point guard playing in just his sixth game. Tiger Williams Jersey . Behind the talents of rookie Johnny Gaudreau, the Flames will look to keep pace Thursday night when they face the Minnesota Wild in the second of a six-game homestand. Morgan Rielly Jersey . And while taking highly-touted Simon Fraser offensive lineman Matthias Goossen second overall on Tuesday night will definitely help in an area of need for the club, it was a swap of draft picks that may prove to be his most shrewd move. "When Jesse Briggs started to fall a little bit, you could just see Kyle perk up in his chair.Just over a week until the start of the season, its almost impossible to get a feel for how the Ottawa Senators will look. This is probably tied into the fact that their expected results and actual results have been all over the place over the last three years - the first two with Ottawa handily beating low expectations and the Senators woefully underperforming lofty dark horse talk last season. The general consensus for this season is that the team will struggle to beat last years 88-point total, primarily due to the fact that replacement options for Jason Spezza seem limited. Two of the three pieces in the trade that moved Spezza to Dallas will not play in the NHL this season, while the third - Alex Chiasson - is penciled in as a second/third-line winger. The franchise knows the difficulty of replacing such a prominent scorer, but believes theyll be a better team down the road after the three-for-one swap. Though the team was guarded in talking about Spezzas departure, I found it interesting how the team was using him last season. Despite being the face of the franchise and the highest-paid player on the team, head coach Paul MacLean deployed Spezza as the teams second-line centre. And he did this frequently. The emergence of Kyle Turris as a bona fide top-six pivot certainly helped things along, but it was fascinating to see the paradigm quietly shift during last season. Take, for example, a comparison of Turris and Spezzas teammates last year. Intuitively, first-line centres should enjoy more talented teammates - the trio earning decisive ice-time and, by virtue of deployment, facing tougher waves of competition. That said, Ive compiled quality of teammate numbers (based on ice time) for each centre and graphed it (first graph) using a 10-game rolling average. The higher the number, the better the teammate (Turris in blue, Spezza in red). If you watched a lot of Ottawa last season, the fact that Turris saw a better assortment of teammates than Spezza shouldnt be surprising. Turris played 75 per cent of his minutes with Clarke MacArthur, 66 per cent of his minutes with Bobby Ryan, and about 50 per cent of his minutes with Erik Karlsson. On the other hand, the only other regular forward Jason Spezza pllayed with was the older Milan Michalek - Spezza played about 69 per cent of his minutes with the aging winger.dddddddddddd As for the brief inversion of the teammate quality in the above graph, it can be explained in two words: Ales Hemsky. Ottawa acquired Hemsky at the deadline and put him on Spezzas wing, and the two made beautiful magic in their brief time together. That brief stretch aside, it was clear Spezza was getting second-rate forwards, at least relative to the younger Turris. We know how Paul MacLean assembled the lineup. But, how did other teams react to Paul MacLeans lineup assembly? Lets focus on the quality of competition each center faced on the left graph, again in rolling 10-game averages. The second graph (Turris in blue, Spezza in red) is best captured in one statement. Teams viewed the MacArthur-Turris-Ryan line as Ottawas biggest threat. Spezzas line generally saw weaker competition than Turris line and it would seem rather clear that part of it was due to the fact that Turris was surrounded by better wingers. Spezza, less so. This also makes sense if you consider that, after the Senators acquired Ales Hemsky, Spezzas line started to see a comparable or tougher wave of relative competition. Ultimately, replacing Spezzas production - his 2.22 points/60 was good for 25th in the league last year, a very respectable number - will prove difficult in the short-term for MacLean. But I think part of solving this issue is properly isolating the question. Ottawas going to need massive efforts from centres Mika Zibanejad, David Legwand, and Zack Smith this year as they attempt to mitigate the loss of Spezza and his 18-plus minutes from their lineup. The trickle-down effect is real and seeing if those who are replacing Spezzas minutes - especially the young Zibanejad - will be game to handle an increased workload is going to be one of the coaching staffs biggest challenges. Theres also the massive absence on the power play, where Spezzas magical playmaking ability and corresponding ice-time will be sorely missed. One question that doesnt need to be answered, though, is how to replace the loss of a first-line centre. Ottawa subtly answered that question one season ago. ' ' '

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