AGD: Wrapping it up in Houston

Kent Wilson
November 25 2012 02:05PM

Time: 4:00pm MST

Location: Houston Toyota Center

Broadbast: abbotsfordheat.com, teamradio.ca

The Heat can wrap up a three game sweep today in Houston after taking out the San Antonio Rampage in a S/O 3-2 last night. That victory marked the second extra time win for Abbotsford on this road trip and was also a record breaker for Barry Brust.

Houston represents the stiffest test for the Heat on this road trip, although that's mainly because both the Rampage and Stars are bottom barrel clubs in the Western Conference. The Aeros are the AHL affiliate of the Minnesota Wild and currently sit tied for sixth in the West (with five other teams) with 19 points. They have a number of recognizable names and with the Heat playing their third game in three days (two of which went into overtime), it's a good bet Abbotsford's going to struggle through some tired legs at some point today.

The Line-up

Nemisz didn't make the roster yesterday, but his fresh energy sure would be a welcome addition today.

  • Baertschi - Walter - Nemisz
  • Olson - Street - Estoclet
  • Horak - Byron - Bancks
  • Ruesegger - Reinhart - Laing

  • Brodie - Piskula
  • Breen - McCarthy
  • McKelvie - Lamb

  • Taylor

Dustin Sylvester found himself and healthy scratch yesterday, as did Kolanos and Ferland. I would expect likely one or two of those guys to make their way back into the line-up today. It has to be a frustrating time for Kolanos, who was far and away the Heat's best offensive player last year. He's always been plagued by skating and effort issues throughout his career, but I doubt he expected to be so consistently squeezed out of the active roster this year given his output last season.

The only guys scoring right now seem to be Ben Street, Sven Baertschi and Brett Olson. They were together last night at the end of the game when Olson scored the game tying goal with 14 seconds left. They might actually emerge as a new unit today, particularly given how cold guys like Ben Walter and Roman Horak have gone.

 The Opposition

The Wild have a nice collection of youngsters on the Aeros. Charlie Coyle and Mikael Granlund are former first rounders (Granlund is injured), but Jason Zucker is another name to keep in mind. A second rounder in 2010, Zucker was a high scorer for the University of Denver in each of the last two seasons. He is currently second on the team in points with 14 points in 13 games.

  • Larsson - Coyle - Zucker
  • Broda - Phillips - Bulmer
  • McMillan - Fontaine - McIntyre
  • Focault - Rau - Palmieri

  • Kempfer - Cuma 
  • Bagnall - Connelly
  • Genoway - Baldwin

  • Hackett

Another name of interest if Justin Fontaine, a free agent 25 year old out of Minnesota Duluth. He's small at 5'10", 170, but was a high scorer in college and currently leads the team with 15 points. On the back-end, Flames fans will recognize Brian Connelly, the undersized, offensive defenseman the team got from Chicago in exchange for Brendan Morrison last year. Also, Joel Broda is a former Calgary Hitman entering his third pro season with the Minnesota organization.

Matt Hackett has a few good pro seasons under his belt and is expected to challenge for an NHL spot sooner rather than later. Unfortunately, he's struggling through a dry spell currently, sporting an untidy .898 save pcertange through 13 starts. There's little chance he will continue to let pucks in at that rate over the long term though.

Sum It up

The Heat have pulled a couple of wins out of the fire on this road trip, but they're facing the best team on the junket this afternoon at the tail end of three games in three days. A win and sweep would be quite the feat. 

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Former Nations Overlord. Current Fn contributor and curmudgeon For questions, complaints, criticisms, etc contact Kent @ kent.wilson@gmail. Follow him on Twitter here.
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#1 Brent G.
November 25 2012, 04:15PM
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I see no one else has posted. Thanks for your commitment and effort to keep this site going Kent. I appreciate this isnt the easiest time but the lock out will end in due time; unfortunately not until the end of the year as far as I can determine by my summations.

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#3 thymebalm
November 25 2012, 04:20PM
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I'm here too. Sylvester in, Ferland out.

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#4 jeremywilhelm
November 25 2012, 04:55PM
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Ferland is hurt.

One of the Aeros players just got seriously injured, a knee I think.

1-1.

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#5 jeremywilhelm
November 25 2012, 04:55PM
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It's Brett Bulmer, his knee is destroyed.

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#6 jeremywilhelm
November 25 2012, 05:21PM
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Baertschi could take a 4 foot high pass with no stick and no arms, the kid has amazing hand eye.

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#7 jeremywilhelm
November 25 2012, 05:39PM
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I miss Greg Nemisz. That's how anemic the heats offense is.

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#8 jeremywilhelm
November 25 2012, 05:45PM
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Aeros score to make it 3-1, unfortunately for them, it was a second after the period ended. No goal.

The heats offense is pretty terrible right now.

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#10 jeremywilhelm
November 25 2012, 06:14PM
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Sven, Walter and Horak have played maybe 1 shift in the third. They might be in trouble.

On the plus side, Reinhart is getting a ton of icetime, but he is still pretty badgerhanded at this point.

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#11 jeremywilhelm
November 25 2012, 06:16PM
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Kent Wilson wrote:

Yeah they've gone stone cold. Lucikly the goaltending continues to be good.

Related: I see Kolanos is again a scratch.

Ward must not like him, he is probably the best offensive player on the team and they could use him, but he must not play the "right way".

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#13 jeremywilhelm
November 25 2012, 06:17PM
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Piskula ties it up, Olson gets another point, the pluggers get it done.

Top line still hasnt played this period.

Maybe Ward is rope a doping?

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#14 jeremywilhelm
November 25 2012, 06:19PM
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Kent Wilson wrote:

I didn't expect Reinhart to put up a lot of points this year, but I also didn't expect him to be quite this far back either.

I don't think he is that far away, I mean, he is generating quite a few chances, but he is terribly snake bitten. I'm not worried, yet. He hasn't seen any PP time in the last 8 games.

If/when the NHL starts up, we shall see what an increase in ice time does. He is probably only playing 10 minutes a game so far this season.

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#15 Baalzamon
November 25 2012, 06:22PM
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@jeremywilhelm

AHL site says Piskula from McKelvie and Bancks. Olson was, apparently, not even on the ice.

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#16 jeremywilhelm
November 25 2012, 06:23PM
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Baalzamon wrote:

AHL site says Piskula from McKelvie and Bancks. Olson was, apparently, not even on the ice.

He changed, I saw a 4 and thought it was Olson, but it was a 34 for bancks.

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#17 jeremywilhelm
November 25 2012, 06:36PM
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OT.

Brodie barely played the third.

Sven, Walter and Horak maybe played one shift.

odd.

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#18 schevvy
November 25 2012, 06:39PM
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Interested to see what Mr. Troy G. Ward says after tonight.

Also to all you Calgarians, what is the deal with the Stamps? Yikes, 24-6 at half

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#19 jeremywilhelm
November 25 2012, 06:39PM
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Wow, OT over. 5 seconds in, Taylor let in a real stinker. Way out of position.

Breen also was victimized terribly.

Don't understand why Ward benched Sven, Walter, Horak and Brodie, seems counterproductive.

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#20 SmellOfVictory
November 25 2012, 09:50PM
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jeremywilhelm wrote:

Wow, OT over. 5 seconds in, Taylor let in a real stinker. Way out of position.

Breen also was victimized terribly.

Don't understand why Ward benched Sven, Walter, Horak and Brodie, seems counterproductive.

Rest? This is their third game in three nights, and I assume they got a ton of icetime the previous two.

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#21 jeremywilhelm
November 26 2012, 07:11PM
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SmellOfVictory wrote:

Rest? This is their third game in three nights, and I assume they got a ton of icetime the previous two.

Rest for the whole period when they have 5 days off this week?

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