The Admirals were shutout 3-0 by the Utica Comets Friday night. Miikka Salomaki was given a game misconduct for boarding late in the first period and, from that point forward, the Comets really throttled the Admirals. The visitors scored three-goals in the second period and cruised to victory from there. It was either the best performance against the Admirals this season – or the most lifeless game played by the Admirals this season.
The first period was controlled by the Utica Comets’ dump and chase game. Their defense was also very impressive. Despite being so aggressive on Admirals skaters, the Comets were generating bad passes from the Admirals and blocked plenty of shots.
Opening frame flashpoint came when Miikka Salomaki took a major penalty and a game misconduct for boarding. The young Finn has been well known for how hard he plays the game. On this circumstance, he may have let his style of play get the best of him when Peter Andersson stopped by the end boards, braced for an impact, and was blasted in the upper back and into the glass. Andersson didn’t return to action in the first period. And the Ads had a five-minute major penalty that needed killing over the space of two periods.
The Admirals were able to kill off the long major penalty. Yet, the Comets were able to get on the board shortly after power-play ended. Darren Archibald’s snipe from the left wing faceoff dot flew over Marek Mazanec’s glove-side shoulder and into the roof. It was a difficult angle shot but he came up with the goods on the game’s opening goal – Archibald’s eighth of the season.
Then came two more goals for the Comets in a second period that they dominated. A quick rush from the Comets sent Colin Stuart and Kent Huskins in on a two-on-two. Stuart’s pass squeaked by the stick of Roussel, got to the tape of Huskins, who then buried his first goal of the season.
Goal number three for the Comets in the second period came just after a successful penalty kill for the Admirals. Scott Valentine was in the box for a hooking call and was just joining the action when Alex Biega’s blueline blast took a deflection in front of Mazanec and in. The man with the deflection was Archibald who scored his second goal of the game – and his ninth of the season.
The game never really went anywhere from that second period. Chances were absolutely nowhere to be found tonight for the Ads. The result was a shutout by the Comets. The last time the Admirals were shutout at home was Mar 27, 2013 versus the Lake Erie Monsters.
Ramblings: Former Admiral Cal O’Reilly did not play tonight for the Utica Comets – he was out with an upper body injury. Joonas Rask was also out for the Admirals after re-injuring his shoulder on Wednesday night against the Hamilton Bulldogs.
Thoughts on tonight’s game? What happened? Was Salomaki’s major penalty deserved or should it have only been a minor? How can this team rebound for Sunday afternoon’s game against the Chicago Wolves?
7 thoughts on “Good Thing Comets Only Come Around So Often; Ads shutout 3-0”
Video Highlights when they’re uploaded… sounds like a short video tonight. AND a new edition of The Chatterbox tomorrow morning with my post-game interviews with Dean Evason, Taylor Beck, and Mark Van Guilder.
once again almost out shot 2:1……once we start getting territorial over our zone we might have something. totally agree about the lifeless preformance, looked like they had no legs tonight. The only boys that had any hustle was my M&M crew Mike Liambas and Mat Tou.@#$@ (sorry I can’t spell his name)
I thought that Salomaki deserved 4 or 5 minutes, not a gamer. I also thought that Mullen deserved 4 minutes for the vicious neutral zone cross check in the third period. Referee Nic Leduc “lesucked” when you view those two calls together. It was the turning point of the game. The linesmen made 30% more offside calls than really happened. That was against both teams.
Milwaukee was outskated for almost the entire game. Only 4 shots on goal in the second period. No shots on goal during the first 6 minutes of that same period. Getting outshot 3-2 in your own building is a losing formula. Bitetto and Roussel didn’t play well together on defense. They were on the ice for the first 2 goals. They were split up after that. Bitetto was on the ice for the third goal along with Ford. Forsberg looked totally lost tonight. He ran into his own guys more than he checked the Utica players. Beck and Saponari didn’t play well. The Admirals didn’t play like a team tonight, they played more like individuals and it showed. Maz played well to keep it to 3 goals.
Van Guilder threw the biggest check that I have ever seen from him in the third period. He has been more physical this season. Maybe he was frustrated with his teammates. Henderson and Liambas looked effective, followed by Cehlin, Tousi and Valentine, then Sissons and Piskula. Jarvinen looked a step slow. Watson was knocked down so many times that I lost count. This was the worst game that I have seen the Admirals play this season. They need to step up for the Chicago Wolves game on Sunday!
Not sure about the 30% more offsides calls? I sit at center ice and have a decent view of the blue lines. I didn’t notice any incorrect offsides calls?
The entire team for the most part just seemed off. There were a lot of bad passes, lack of puck control, a lot of dumping pucks deep in the zone and not being able to retrieve them…
What’s really disappointing is Forsberg. I know a few people have said he hasn’t been playing well and I was sort of on board but wanted to be patient with him. Well I think I’m jumping on that bandwagon now. I’m not sure what has changed, but he from a dynamic looking player when he was first sent down to someone who is going through the motions. Hope he turns things around.
The other big disappointment is over the last several games, win or loss, we haven’t looked like a dominant team. While there may be spans of great offensive puck control, it seems like the team spends a lot of time in the defensive zone. We can’t be a calder cup team playing 2/3rds of the game in our own zone…. hope that turns around too!
Creedfeed: I though when Forsberg was first sent down he looked like a prospect that could be a star. Now, he looks like he forgot how to play hockey. At one point I think Joe Piskula had the puck at neutral ice and he slowly skated off for a change, last night he looked like he didn’t even want to play. One more thing is when Mikka got his game misconduct some of the parents from a youth hockey team, to my right, were cheering even after the trainer was out. I just thought that was very strange.
I can’t add much to what was said. It was a lifeless performance by the whole team. In that sense it was a team effort. Just the wrong kind!
I definitely agree that Forsberg was very disappointing. I’m not ready to give up on him yet as he is very young, but watching him play so poorly was unfortunate.
I think the boarding call on Salomaki was a good call. You could see in the replay video how far out in front of him his arms were when he went in for the check. I don’t think he was trying to injure, but the NHL and AHL have been pretty consistent on those types of things (at least in terms of reading about suspensions and things on the websites).
Is it just me or did it seem like a lot of players were falling down last night? Both my wife and I seemed to notice many players falling multiple times, much more than normal.
Also maybe just me, but it seems like Watson needs to work on his speed. I still think he’s a good player and will be an NHLer, but he seemed really show last night.
FitF: You and your wife were correct. A lot of players fell down by themselves last night. Others, like Watson, went down a lot easier than usual. With the cold temperatures outside, the air should be dry, meaning that the ice should not be sticky.
Ruts? Ice plant problems? Evil spirits? Bucks game? Too many people in the stands? Zamboni?
Any ideas out there on “why the men fall down and go boom”?