Well, for the last time in the 2017-18 season, we must crown our Admiral of the Month. It’s unfortunate that April’s award will come without playoff performances to account for but the Milwaukee Admirals were eliminated from contention in the final week of the regular season. It’s difficult to say that the season ended poorly. The Admirals were playing their best hockey of the season ever since the NHL Trade Deadline. It’s perhaps unfortunate the moves made weren’t made sooner.
Yet, for all of the moves that were made around that NHL Trade Deadline, there were some really great performances being cooked up by those that had been here from the start of the season. Anders Lindbäck was the rock of the Admirals – period. Harry Zolnierczyk provided such quality effort every single shift of every single game. Both Petter Granberg and Jimmy Oligny were solid defensively all season and also made some really smart plays offensively that might not have registered on the score sheet but certainly helped maintain attacks that lead to chances. But, more than anyone, it feels that the growth of Anthony has been one of the real bright spots watching the Admirals this season. He continued to get better and better but displayed that maturity in development across all areas of the ice. Richard’s work in April might have been the highlight of that growth. And that is why Richard is The Real Estate Center’s Admiral of the Month for April.
When viewing the stats alone you might feel confused for Richard’s April run. He produced 5 points (2 goals, 3 assists) in 7 games. Which is good but perhaps not jaw dropping. What I take note of is the idea of “what if” Richard so much as scored on half the amount of chances that he generates per game? I think if he does that the Admirals might well have snuck into the Calder Cup Playoffs. Richard averaged 4.14 shots on goal per game in April. He was relentless with his speed, drive to be a difference maker in all games, and was just off the mark when it came to finishing those chances.
I feel Richard is very much a case for one of the players that the 2017-18 season will mean a lot for him moving forward than it does in this moment. It hurts to not be in the playoffs but, for a 21-year old competing in his second pro season, this showed an exponential increase in what he displayed as a rookie last season.
If he is able to process and adapt like this once again next season? He could well be knocking on the door of NHL opportunity. To do that he’s going to need to start getting a better scoring touch for all of these breakaway and odd-man chances he can create with his ludicrous speed. If he can do that? If he can get himself even stronger as to battle around the net with greater Viktor Arvidsson like tenacity? He’s set for an even better 2018-19 season.
~Admiral of the Month Award~
October: Emil Pettersson
November: Anders Lindbäck
December: Anders Lindbäck
January: Bobby Butler
February: Frédérick Gaudreau
March: Anders Lindbäck
April: Anthony Richard
Who do you feel was the top performer for the Milwaukee Admirals during the month of April? Was it Anthony Richard, Anders Lindbäck, Harry Zolnierczyk, or someone else? Tell me who your Admiral of the Month was in the comment section below.
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