Kenny Reiter’s riding a two-game winning streak into tonight (7-2-2 in his past 11), has some of the best numbers on the team the past couple of years, and now finally has an NHL contract to his name. The Islanders announced his signing this afternoon for the rest of the year. (At 27, he’ll be unrestricted at the end of the season.) Good news and well earned for him, and it gives the Islanders flexibility with him and their other goalies if they need it.
(Speaking of other goalies, Anders Nilsson’s repeated Twitter references to Denver as “Foppa-land” are kind of awesome.)
No Phil tonight not least because of awesome news: He and his wife became parents for the first time yesterday. All involved doing well; can’t wait to see them all.
The box will be here. A lot of Jon McIsaac scheduled this weekend.
Links in the meantime:
Brian Rafalski has signed in the ECHL.
And RIP, NAHL player Peter Halash.
More in a bit.
–Kevin Oklobzija reports that Hartford has claimed T.J. Hensick off waivers. He was let go in Sweden this week and, Kevin reports, signed by Abbotsford, but a player who’d been playing in Europe has to clear waivers after signing an AHL contract. (The deadline for that type of player used to be Dec. 15, but it’s now Feb. 1.)
Eventual prescout. Portland had almost as hard a time getting home from Newfoundland as it had getting up there, but the Pirates got back yesterday.
–Reiter vs. Martin Jones, says Corey, who adds:
Gallant (A)-Lowry-Bruton (C)
D: Ness (A)-Mayfield
R: McIsaac. L: T.Whittemore, Turcotte.
–RIP, Larry Speakes, who had a pretty good name for his job.
–Bridgeport kills an early Kabanov penalty, but afterward, Vaughan loses the handle in the right corner, and Sabourin scores on a backhander at 3:41.
–Ken makes a good point during that penalty: These teams are now a combined 0-for-50 on the power play in this season series. There’ve been two four-on-four goals (one with an extra attacker on a delayed penalty) and an empty-netter, but no actual power-play goals.
–It’s 1-0 Manchester after one. Bridgeport had a couple of good chances during a Shore penalty but couldn’t beat Jones.
–Earlyish second, Jones stops Lee on a short-handed breakaway and the rebound.
–Foreshadowed nicely by Ken in the first, the Monarchs score on their second consecutive power play in the second. Kozun puts it in on a rebound after O’Brien’s pass, nearly blocked, gets through to the left post. It’s 2-0 at 7:36.
–A big right-pad save by Reiter on Vey with a little over five minutes left in the period.
–At 19:03, Halmo takes the third Bridgeport penalty of the period for slashing a stick. (They’ve faced four PPs in the second, including a Diamond
–Period ends 2-0, with a minute and small change carrying over to the third.
–About five minutes into the third, Halmo’s all over Kozun, and they can’t be separated. Andreoff tries to get in, Mayfield comes over, and Andreoff slugs away at Mayfield. Penalties to be sorted out.
–Twitchy with the instigator button lately: Andreoff gets an instigator for his fight with Mayfield. They wind up evening everything out on the board at 4:28.
–They’ve apparently taken their time announcing the penalties there, because they’re up on the boxscore but the broadcast team is still wondering why there’s… oh, no. Chris thinks it’s be four-on-four. It wouldn’t. There are other penalties. (Although considering all the times we’ve seen that applied in ways that look inappropriate, I shouldn’t say that so definitively.) Halmo and Kozun get misconducts as well for persisting in the altercation, which will keep Halmo out until the final minutes.
–My feed’s trailing the box score by a couple of minutes, somehow. Game may be over for now for all I know. The box says they’re going four-on-four for the next 37 seconds with 7:29 to go.
–Portland blew a 3-0 lead, took a late 4-3 lead, gave up a goal later, and lost to Norfolk in a shootout. So they’ll be happy tomorrow.
–Brian O’Neill for interference with 3:13 left. Bridgeport pulls Reiter for the power play.
–Corey tweets a Diamond six-on-four goal with 1:40 to go; we’ll see how it happens in about 10 minutes.
–It was a Quine right-circle faceoff win; Diamond scored right off it. 2-1 Manchester.
–Weird stuff: A chuck-a-puck gets tossed into the middle of the action in the Manchester zone; the Monarchs clear and score into the empty net with 35 and change seconds to go. Bridgeport’s not happy, but McIsaac lets it stand. Sean Backman adds another empty-netter: Manchester 4, Bridgeport 1, final. That’s one win (in a shootout) in the past seven, 1-5-0-1.
–Yeah, Scott Pellerin would’ve liked that play blown dead; two pucks and all. But no excuses there: “I thought we came out flat. We weren’t skating. We lost all the puck battles early on in the game,” Pellerin said. “I’m very disappointed in the effort. They have to look at themselves in the mirror and find a way (the rest of the weekend).
Lots of penalties… “Stick fouls, undisciplined. … A couple of them were guys playing hard,” he said, but most of them were “just undisciplined, and I don’t understand why. It’s something I’ll address again with my team.”
Reiter, “I thought he played tremendous, some big saves early on,” Pellerin said. He said the first was a broken play, that Vaughan tried a pass that hit off a stanchion and left Sabourin with a two-on-one down low. The second involved a defender sliding and getting out of position.
John Persson had that good skate this morning and, Pellerin hopes, should be available tomorrow. Riley Wetmore is cleared for full practice next week.
No morning skate tomorrow, so more tomorrow night.