It’s repetition, Brent Thompson said. You remind your kids over and over, he said, what you expect from them, what you need from them.
His kids are coming along. Thompson was very complimentary of how Michael Dal Colle and Josh Ho-Sang played tonight, both ways.
Defensive progress, he said, comes from something he’s talked about, particularly with Ho-Sang, for a long time.
“Just stops and starts,” Thompson said. “It’s that simple. I could break it all down, but if you’re willing to stop, if you’re willing to get a stick in that lane … I’m very happy with the positional play and the wall battles in that group.”
Josh Winquist had a stinger, Thompson said, that was hampering him. Dal Colle and Ho-Sang took faceoffs, each on his strong side. Dal Colle played some center.
They did a solid job. Thompson was a little more concerned with some of the puck plays from the other lines. He said the defensemen’s gaps were better earlier than later.
And offensively, they got it done again. Dal Colle led Ho-Sang on a breakaway.
“I actually owe Mike two more I missed the last couple of games,” Ho-Sang said.
The chemistry has been phenomenal. They seem to be putting it all together. They’re working well together.
And the team has walked off with eight in a row.
Thompson said he had yet to talk to the doctors about Steve Bernier’s timetable, but it sounds more week-to-week.
Seventh winning streak of eight or more (sixth all within one season). Shootout wins are tricky to account for, and there’s one of those in this streak, but still. The nine-game streaks were Feb. 2-22, 2002 (after the brawl in Springfield); Nov. 9-29, 2003 (in the middle of the 20-game unbeaten streak), and March 31-Oct. 12, 2009 (SIX MONTHS LONG kinda – the seventh was a shootout win). The last eight-game streak was, of course, last Jan. 20-Feb. 13, culminating on Frozen Night, if you wanted to build a snowman.
Bridgeport now has three active six-game winning streaks for goaltenders. Anders Nilsson’s last six. (OK, OK. BTW, caught a shot of him backing up last night for Buffalo on the Rangers’ broadcast: How about that beard, man.) Christopher Gibson, six this year plus the last two of the last regular season. And now Jaroslav Halak.
One. Minor. Penalty. Pierre Lambert is the new Jeff Smith. Bridgeport had Lambert solo for his first AHL game in 2012; called nine power plays, but I’ve got a “fine” next to that name in my notes. In the past three seasons, he has worked three Bridgeport games alone, and in those three games have been 10 total power plays. This is the first time Bridgeport has gotten through a game without a penalty minute, and only the third time it hasn’t faced a power play. There was one game where no skater got a penalty (Anders Nilsson for slashing, Dec. 29, 2012, vs. Manchester: T.J. Luxmore). There was one game where they got through 64 minutes, 42.3 seconds without a penalty (Dec. 7, 2008, at Lowell, Mike Iggulden trip in overtime: Frederic L’Ecuyer, only one power play each way). There was one game where the only penalty for either team was a delay of game minor (Brian Day, March 30, 2011, on his ATO, at Portland: Terry Koharski and Ian Croft).
Glorious, in short.
(Cameron Voss had the game in Albany tonight and should’ve put Albany on a three-minute major with 4:58 to go. Instead they went four-on-four, at which Albany took a penalty, at which Lehigh Valley scored the game-winner on the four-on-three. Tough one.)
Wonder if the governor had any thoughts on the ice quality here tonight.
There was an honest-to-God media scrum tonight (three of us), and I assume at least one of the other two guys is using Ho-Sang’s talk about the soccer players he idolized growing up. If they don’t, I’ll find a place for it. The kid is fascinating.
Prescout. Goal for the fourth line. Jared McCann and Dylan McIlrath were in for the Thunderbirds, but not Paul Thompson, sent down earlier today.
Carolina PR guy Mike Sundheim tweeted this incredible scoresheet from a New England Whalers game against the Soviet national team 39 years ago. Holy assortment of legends.
More on the PHPA’s 50th anniversary celebration that Larry Landon announced Monday.
And RIP, Jeff Sauer.