Bad Weekend

After a bad game on Saturday, the  Admirals followed it up with another poor outing Sunday evening, losing in the rematch to the Rockford IceHogs 3-2 in the land of the Roo.

Down 3-0 with five minutes left in the third period, Taylor Beck and Chris Mueller scored to make the final score look a lot closer than the game actually was.  And then Taylor Beck took a boarding penalty with 59 seconds left to halt the rally prematurely.

Nuts and bolts are here.  The Admirals recap is here.

Last night, Coach said they would need more desperation in their game coming out of the gate tonight.  But what he got was minor penalties, and the team being outshot 18-7.

And again tonight — it wasn’t the skill players who scored for Rockford.  It was Ryan Stanton, who scored his 2nd of the year (and 2nd against the Admirals in his last four games).  Brandon Svendsen, who scored his third of the year.  Rob Flick’s game winner was his third of the year.

Ground control to Kyle Wilson.  Your circuit’s dead.  There’s something wrong.  Still just one assist for him in the season series against Rockford.

Coach Drulia used the word “passengers” when describing some of the players on the post-game show.  It doesn’t matter what the coaches draw up for the gameplan if the guys on the ice are just along for the ride.

So yes, it’s an immensely disappointing weekend.  And let’s frame this disappointment appropriately.  The IceHogs aren’t your typical cellar-dweller team.  They are the hottest team in the league right now not named the Norfolk Admirals.  They have at least a point in nine of their last ten games.  And Carter Hutton wasn’t manning the net the first two months of the season…if he was, who knows…they may be in first right now.

Despite the stinkers this weekend, the Admirals are only 6 points out of the playoffs with games in hand.  Not unheard of.  But they are running out of chances….even the optimist in me can see that.  They can help themselves with four points next weekend against two out-of-division teams ahead of them in the standings.


4 thoughts on “Bad Weekend”

  1. A few problems with the “they’re only X points out of the playoffs” theory. First, the Ads are “only” 8-points out of first place in their division. On the other hand, they are also “only” 8points away from having the worst record in the entire conference. So the stats are all relative. The fact of the matter is that the Ads are playing in a league full of parity where 6 points is a heck of a long way to go. Unfortunately, the Ads are not in the 9th playoff slot, but the 11th. So not only do they need to climb back from a 6-point deficit, they need to also climb over the backs of several other teams. While difficult in itself, that task is made even more difficult by virtue of the fact that a lot of the teams standing in front of the Ads are playing each other into OT, this picking up 1-point each and making the road for the Ads even harder. The Ads need to find a way to win in regulation while having a lot of other teams lose in regulation. Problem is that when one team loses in regulation, another team wins, and the Ads simply can’t afford that, either.

    And let’s say, miracle of miracles, the Ads find a way to eek out that 8th playoff slot. The reward is playing the Oklahoma City Barons, and a likely sweep out of the playoffs. Is that a better result than just missing the playoffs? I would suggest it is not.

    Someone else said it right when they suggested that this team is simply immature on and off the ice. Perhaps this team can learn from their failures and right the ship for next year. There’ll be some new faces on the ice and maybe that will help, too. Time will tell.

    As for this year, it’s over.

  2. There seems to be consensus that there are talented players on this team, but effort and performance on the ice is inconsistent and/or lacking. There have also been comments about
    the ECHL call-ups showing more energy and drive than those on the regular line-up. Both of these observations beg the question …. what part does the coach play in the frequent lackluster performance? ECHL players are highly motivated to make an impression but have not been exposed for any serious length of time to the head coach’s style of coaching, teaching, communication and motivational techniques.
    The blogs are now questioning the coaching, which makes more sense to me than simply
    blaming the immaturity of the players. Coach Herbers became an assistant coach with the AHL San Antonio Rampage in 2004 before the lockout. From the AHL he then moved to the Saginaw Spirit of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) in 2005 and spent two years there before elevating to the ECHL’s Johnstown Chiefs. He was named head coach of the Johnstown Chiefs in 2007 and joined on 5 August 2009 as Assistant Coach to Milwaukee Admirals of the American Hockey League. I believe he has applied for the head coaching job in Milwaukee twice (maybe more), but
    was turned down. Clearly there might have been a very good reason. It looks like, as a player, he was a utility player and more of an ‘enforcer’ based on penalty minutes. It takes a lot more to being a successful hockey coach than having a history of playing the game. Top level coaches are constantly looking for better ways to communicate their messages, connect with their players and improve as coaches and teachers.
    Strong, effective communication skills may be the most important of all — communicating information, knowledge, instilling confidence, showing trust & respect to staff and players, being positive and encouraging instead of critical, sarcastic, threatening and demeaning, and building relationships that foster trust between coach and player. There have been many, many talented players over the years whose careers have been destroyed by a coach who hasn’t evolved and learned that you get the very best out of your players by learning the above. What goes on in the dressing room and behind the scenes would tell the real story. Players are not machines, they are human beings. Lacklustre performance raises a big red flag for me about the coaching.
    Unfortunately, players do not speak up because of the fear of being “black-balled” (excuse the
    expression), but I would hope that Fenton and the Nashville coaching staff would have enough
    serious concerns at this point to address players and staff and solicit feedback. I don’t buy the
    immaturity comments … players who are talented, confident, happy and passionate about the game
    and their team play with intensity which translates into winning performances, whether they’re
    mature adults or not.

  3. Have to agree a lot with playtowin’s points on the coaching side of this problem we like to call our milwaukee admirals. Herbers never really impressed as an assist and when muller got the call to carolina I was worried about our teams direction. I have said in past posts that way don’t have “great” or super star players but a lot of good players. This is true to a degree except mueller he is pretty damn good and is doing his best, but that aside a good coach can get out of good or average players better results. Coach Noel was an excellent example of this by knowing what players to put in certain situations and trying to get their best out of them. He could evaluate players and know what they were capable of accomplishing. I don’t feel herbers can do this nor do I feel he can connect with these players. The hole is too deep for the team to climb out of, it takes a lot to get into a playoff spot, my nhl the buffalo sabres are 4pts out and every game for them is a must win and everyone for the caps and jets is a must lose and I’m not sure they’ll make it either and they have less pts to get then mke. Sadly this year I feel we won’t have playoff hockey at the BC…. But who knows stranger things have happened.

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