Aeros spoil Winchester’s solid debut

If you hadn’t heard about Milwaukee’s acquisition of Brad Winchester Tuesday, you certainly should have by now.

The new Admiral made his presence known in more ways than one in Wednesday night’s 3-2 loss to Houston, making an impact on and off the scorecard.

Winchester’s first-point initiation didn’t take long.

Early in the first period, Anthony Bitetto fired the puck from the Admirals zone all the way down to the boards behind Houston goalie Darcy Kuemper.

Winchester had a beat on the puck and was easily able to grab it and feed it back to Taylor Beck. Beck fed it left in front to Chris Mueller who put away the one timer to put Milwaukee up 1-0 at 7:35.

Here’s Winchester on his part of the play:

David McIntyre tied it up less than two minutes later when Charlie Coyle hit him on a cross-ice feed. While Jeremy Smith looked caught in a bad position, Mike Moore certainly could’ve done more to help him out.

Shorty after the goal, Winchester leveled Johan Larsson with a beautiful clean open-ice hit. The Aeros responded by going after Michael Latta after the ensuing faceoff.

Houston took the lead 5:07 into the second period when Beck fired a bad pass seemingly right to Jason Zucker. The shot was pure and the play happened so fast that Smitty had little time to react.

Austin Watson redirected a long wrister by Scott Valentine at the 17:07 mark of the period, but the tie would be short-lived.

Just 52 seconds later, Nick Petersen came out of a weave sent home the eventual game winner for Houston from the slot.

The power play continued to struggle with the scoreless streak now at 28 attempts. After the game Evason said the PP units were still frustrated and weren’t able to get anything going that they’d hoped to during the week.

Evason also felt Smitty played well enough to win with 25 saves, but mentioned his team’s inability to start the way it finishes in the intensity department.

Evason was still pleased with the start of Winchester’s Admiral career and the prospects of what he can bring to the roster.


Evason said Jani Lajunen was a healthy scratch for reasons he didn’t disclose.

The Ads’ winless streak is now at six games heading into Country Music night this Friday against OKC.


So we’ve heard what Evason is trying to do with the power play. Do you agree?

What did you think of Winchester? Did he seem a step above the rest with his pro pedigree?

Were you as thrilled as we were to see the Soup Nazi? Or did hearing the phrase “No Soup for You!” over and over start to get a tad old by the end of the game?

13 thoughts on “Aeros spoil Winchester’s solid debut”

  1. My comment on the power play is that personnel on it need to change I believe. Evason has stated a few times over the last few weeks that the team was working on the power play in practice and that they were simplifying it. Well we are now at 0-26 I believe on the power play which is horrible. You can keep simplifying it but obviously the same players that he keeps putting out on it aren’t doing the job. Why is Watson your leading scorer not on the 1st line power play? Heck last night I don’t think he played even a second of power play time. I don’t know of any other team that doesn’t put it’s leading scorer on the power play. Pretty bad.

  2. Another thought is to sit the power play lines. Evason has sat his first 2 lines for 4 or 5 minutes due to poor perforrmance. I think it is time to sit the regulars on the Power Play and let some of the others…Puustinen, Shalla, Watson etc try and see what happens. It sure couldn’t hurt. We can’t even get a shot on net against the worst penalty killers in the league

  3. Wow. Hockeyfever makes a comment about how Austin Watson is getting some kind of raw deal and not getting enough ice time. Shocking.

  4. Yonkfan – to be fair if you read all the arguments for not calling him up are that he needs “top 6 time” in Milwaukee for development. Well if you watch he doesn’t get that time. That said I must say someone else I feel is getting a raw deal is Puustinen. He plays a very solid consistent game and doesn’t get the play time I think he should either. at some point you have to change things up because the Power Play is just horrible – it is painful to watch.

  5. I asked coach about the possibility of switching up the lines and the answer I got is the one heard in the story.

  6. Yonkfan-No where in my comment did I state that Watson was getting a raw deal. I believe that is your interpretation of my comments. All I stated were the facts about the situation. I still don’t at this time whether it be Watson or any other player on any other team, understand that when they are your leading goal scorer they get little, or as in last night game, no power play time. I don’t think I have ever seen another team use that philosophy. If I am not mistaken you are as a team really trying to score a goal so it would seem logical that you would put your leading goal scorer on the 1st line power play.

  7. I can’t argue against the fact that the power play stinks. But geez, every post it’s always the same. What a crime it is that Watson isn’t on the first unit…what a crime it is that he’s not in Nashville…what a crime it is that he’s not President of the f-ing world. Watson this. Watson that. What’s your favorite color? Watson. Who’s your favorite Brady kid? Watson. “Come a long and sing the song and join the jamboree. W-A-T S-O-N. He will fix PP.” How about Austin Watson versus a hurricane? Oh, Austin Watson for sure. Well, what if it was Hurricane Austin? Or Hurricane Watson? Well, then I pick Ditka. How about Austin Watson versus the Carolina Hurricanes? How many Staal’s are playing? Yes. Okay, then Watson 523, Canes 3. When Austin Watson holds his breath, time stands still. The fat lady waits for Austin Watson to sing. Austin Watson doesn’t call the wrong number — you just answer the wrong phone. Austin Watson’s hand is the only hand that can beat a Royal Flush.

    Let’s talk about something else now.

  8. Ok, I got a little carried away. It’s cool that you’re supporting your boy, but seriously, it’s the same song every time, man!

  9. Yonkfan-sorry you are for some reason offended that I have been talking about Watson. Fans usually have a player they cheer for and support. Didn’t think that was such a big deal. Like I said before if I thought there were other solutions that made sense I would state them. I would be interested to hear any constructive comments you would have about the discussion topics. So far all we have heard from you is personal attacks against people with nothing constructive to say. Any ideas on the topic or just more criticism? To the fans that talk about certain players all the time do you do the same? On this topic for this article I would say that we need to find someone on defense who can keep the puck in at the blue line. Puustinen on the point seemed like a good thing with potential and maybe something we should keep trying for a little while. Yonkfan I hope your day gets better as you seem to have been having a bad one.

  10. MacLellan: 29 games played, 0 goals, 1 assist, -10
    Lajunen: 37 games played, 1 goal, 2 assists, -10
    Are they not centers? Don’t they belong somewhere near the, I don’t know, center? As in, in front of the friggin’ goal? Maybe in some sort of scoring position? Imagine that, forwards who actually score goals- what a novel idea.

    Contrast that with ‘He who shall remain nameless’: 40 games played, 14 goals, 7 assists, +2

    The sun may not set on Watson’s rump, but at very least he is productive, and you can’t argue with that.

    With 40 games in, and only 40 points, this season is shaping up to be worse than last year’s, and that borders on pathetic. I’d have to think that the current coaching staff will be living on Obamabucks next year, or maybe I should say I hope they are.

  11. Ouch! Long time no read! I agree that Evason needs to whip the team into shape or get a job in retail. Six games with no wins. Half of that was before the NHL call-ups, so I don’t want to hear any excuses using that. They PP is horrible. I, and a few others, said that the people on the PP needed to be changed. That was about 2 weeks ago. MacLellan is -10 because he doesn’t know how to play defense. Has Lajunen really played 37 games? He gets my vote for the Invisible Man Award.

  12. I am hoping that Daniel Bang can return soon. I thought he was playing pretty well and having a decent season before he got hurt. I tthink he could help us right now and bring some energy to the team. On the last games radio broadcast I thought they said he could be back pretty soon, maybe a week? Anyone else hear anything on him?

  13. I had the thought that blogs such as this tend to lean toward negative criticism (I’m guilty of that), and could be detrimental to the players’ attitudes should they follow the blog. That’s why I’ve been quiet.

    That being said, what the heck is going on this season? I thought last year was bad, but this one fell off the cliff. With 40 games on the books and 40 points, that leaves a possibility of 72 more points IF they win every game going forward. That makes a total possible of 114 points. However, more than 1/2 way through the season they’ve only managed to average a point a game, which would put them at 76 points for the season. That is sub-miserable.

    It’s difficult to get fired up when there is so much potential but so little effective action. I can’t help but think the coaching staff is inadequate.

    End of gripe.

    On a positive note, the addition of Winchester may prove to be a positive influence.

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