Today was “Media Day” for the Milwaukee Admirals ahead of this weekend’s opening playoff series against the Toronto Marlies. I attended practice and talked with plenty of guys on the team. Let’s dive in!
Firstly, all forwards are healthy. Mike Liambas participated in the full practice today and has been back in that cycle for the last two days. The lone man out with injury is Scott Valentine. I had the chance to talk with him briefly and it would seem that his season is over due to a shoulder operation he had done recently. He is in good spirits but, as you’d expect, disappointed to be out at this point in the season.
Those were the forward lines from this morning’s practice. It is worth mentioning that Joe Pendenza did flip places at center on the bottom line every now and then.
Of the newbies we heard about joining the team yesterday – both were on ice today. Jaynen Rissling was wearing the #5 and Garrett Noonan was wearing the #23. I don’t know what it is… Teddy Ruth or Michael Young… but that #5 is sort of this season’s Little Bastard. Luckily for Noonan – I’ve already discovered that he might have the best nickname on the team: Fozzie Bear.
There actually was a legit media group today that included more than just myself and Dave Boehler. WISN-12 and FOX-6 were on hand for the morning practice and scrums – so watch your local news this evening or later tonight to see your Admirals in fancy TV-land!.
I was able to get all requested players you readers asked for on Twitter or Facebook today. So this edition of the Chatterbox includes Dean Evason, Anthony Bitetto, Joonas Rask, Charles-Olivier Roussel, and Miikka Salomaki. Here is what all the guys had to say today.
Dean Evason discusses his preparations for Toronto:
Evason on facing Drew MacIntyre:
Evason on the first round playoff choice of starting at home vs. finishing at home:
Evason breaks down the upcoming special teams battle:
Evason provides an update on Mike Liambas:
Evason discusses the differences between this year and last year’s playoff teams:
Anthony Bitetto on facing the AHL’s top defenseman T.J. Brennan:
Bitetto compares Milwaukee and Toronto’s defense:
Bitetto talks about the playoffs:
Bitetto’s thoughts about starting the series on home ice:
Bitetto and I talk playoff beards:
Joonas Rask’s thoughts on his season:
Rask talks about the North American style game versus the European style:
Rask and I talk about some brother of his:
Charles-Olivier Roussel’s thoughts on facing Toronto:
Roussel assesses his regular season:
Roussel talks about his improvements last season to this season:
Miikka Salomaki speaks about playoff season:
Salomaki on how important Milwaukee fans have been on home ice this season:
Salomaki’s thoughts on his first pro season in North America:
Salomaki jokes about having a great mix of European players on the Admirals:
Comments on the comments? What are you expecting from these opening two playoff games in Milwaukee? Who will need to fill in for Scott Valentine’s role for the playoffs?