Remember that awful month of December? The Milwaukee Admirals sure don’t. The team is now in second place of the Midwest Division and are four points behind the Rockford IceHogs with two games in hand.
Have you folks noticed the latest buzz words for the Admirals in the last few editions of the Chatterbox? “Do the right things,” and, “Play the right way,” have come up a lot lately from head coach Dean Evason. To me, I equate that to him stating the obvious to the players: keep it simple. The Admirals have massive amounts of forward skill this season and they’ve been caught doing too much individual plays at times. It has lead to the sit down of Pontus Åberg and, for the last two games, Brendan Leipsic.
Playing the right way has meant playing smart, putting pucks on net, crashing for rebounds, and being sharp on defense. The result in the last four games has been four wins with the Admirals outscoring their opponents 14-3.
If playing the right way means being smart with the puck it sure has been paying massive dividends defensively as well. The Admirals posted back-to-back shutouts for the first time since Magnus Hellberg did it to end the 2012-13 season. That, like when he and Marek Mazanec did it these last two games, also happened at the end of a three-in-three. The Ads now haven’t allowed a goal in 129:59 of ice time and counting.
After the game I spoke with as many players as I could before the Chatterbox goes dark with the Admirals upcoming three game road trip. This meant tonight’s post game interviews had: Dean Evason, Viktor Arvidsson, Colton Sissons, Miikka Salomäki, Magnus Hellberg, and Anthony Bitetto. Here is what everyone had to say after the game:
Dean Evason on the Admirals recent performances:
Evason talks about the Admirals steady approach:
Evason on the Admirals goaltending:
Evason talks about Leipsic being a healthy scratch the last two games:
Viktor Arvidsson describes his highlight reel second goal:
Arvidsson on the team’s turn-around:
Arvidsson on the Ads goaltenders:
Colton Sissons talks about his two goal night:
Sissons on keeping the game simple:
Sissons talks about the Admirals goaltenders:
Miikka Salomäki on his NHL debut:
Salomäki on getting to debut in Nashville:
Salomäki describes his first career NHL goal:
Salomäki on what has changed for the Admirals over the last few games:
Magnus Hellberg talks about he and Mazanec’s back-to-back shutouts:
Hellberg on some in-game antics with Mazanec:
Hellberg discusses his recent AHL All Star selection:
Hellberg gets even with interview bomber Austin Watson:
Anthony Bitetto on the Admirals turning things around:
Bitetto and I talk about the right things:
Bitetto on scoring his second goal of the season:
Bitetto talks about what being paired with Ian White has taught him so far:
Bitetto describes what the reaction to Salomäki’s debut and goal was like:
Comments from the comments? Can the Admirals maintain this form on their upcoming road trip? Do you agree with Dean Evason’s decision to sit players out?