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The Whale Week That Was - November 16, 2011

Former Ranger Aaron Voros has joined the Whale on a PTO

Former Ranger Aaron Voros has joined the Whale on a PTO

Every Wednesday we’ll take a look at the status of the Rangers’ AHL affiliate. Top prospects Ryan Bourque and Carl Hagelin will be key players for the Whale this season - we’ll check on how they’re doing and how the team performs as the season progresses.

- Former Ranger Aaron Voros has signed a professional tryout (PTO) with the Whale.  Voros, 30, played two seasons with the Blueshirts, registering 11 goals and 12 assists in 95 games with the team.  Prior to last season the Blueshirts traded Voros to Anaheim in a deal for defenseman Steve Eminger.  Voros played just 12 games for the Ducks and failed to score a point.  Paul Doyle of The Hartford Courant reports that Voros actually called Rangers GM Glen Sather asking for an opportunity and Sather agreed.  He’s obviously hoping for another shot at the NHL, but it’s likely that Voros is just another body for Connecticut at this stage of his career.

- The Whale fell to the AHL-leading St. John’s IceCaps in consecutive days over the weekend, first losing 8-4 on Saturday and then 4-3 on Sunday.  The IceCaps beat Connecticut 6-3 in the first meeting of the season between these times nearly two weeks ago.

Saturday’s game featured a bizarre set of circumstances.  With 4:41 left in the second period, a collision between Patrice Cormier and Brendan Bell shattered a glass pane and the referees sent both teams to their dressing rooms.  The Whale was up 4-3 at the time, but when the teams emerged to play the final 4:41 as an add-on to the start of the third period, St. John’s seized the momentum.  The IceCaps scored twice during that time-span and three more times in the actual third period for five unanswered goals.  CT Coach Ken Gernander was displeased by several Whale turnovers.  Chad Johnson replaced Cam Talbot, who allowed three goals on 15 first period shots, before the first frame was over.  Johnson stopped 21 of 26 shots.  John Mitchell scored twice for the Whale and Tim Erixon picked up his first professional goal.  Carl Hagelin also scored on a penalty shot. 

On Sunday Connecticut twice surrendered two-goal leads to fall to the IceCaps 4-3.  Mitch Beck reports that the Whale has blown leads in six of its 14 games this seasonMitchell scored again, this time on the power play.  Tommy Grant and Hagelin also scored; the latter deflected a Pavel Valentenko point shot with his face.  Blake Parlett picked up three assists in the contest.  Johnson made 23 saves on 27 shots.

- Francois Bouchard did not factor into the scoring over the weekend and was a minus-2.

- Mitchell has five goals and an assist in Connecticut’s last five games.  He’s the Whale’s leading scorer.

- Hagelin is just behind Mitchell with six goals and five assists.  He’s also an impressive plus-9.

- Erixon has a goal and two assists in five games with the Whale, but he’s a minus-4.

- Talbot and Johnson have matching .903 save percentages this season. 

- The two losses dropped Connecticut to third place in the Northeast Division.  The team has scored 44 times and given up 44 goals this season.

- Last Wednesday the CT Whale assigned defenseman Jyri Niemi to the Greenville Road Warriors.  Niemi’s demotion and the trade of Kundratek eased Connecticut’s logjam on defense.

- Speaking of Kundratek, The Patriot-News spoke with the defenseman following his trade last week and Kundratek revealed that he requested a trade from the organization.  “I was asking for a trade because it was kind of a tough position in New York and Hartford,” Kundratek said, presumably referring to the logjam of defenders in the system.

- Nick Perri examines how Bouchard will fit in with the Whale over at  Bruce Berlet also spoke with Bouchard following the deal.

- Berlet also has a great piece on how the Rangers’ attitude toward developing young players has changed in recent years.

- The week ahead: The Whale will host the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, the AHL affiliate of the New York Islanders, on Friday at 7:00 p.m. and also play Monday on the road against the Portland Pirates in a matinee at 4:05 p.m.


Past editions of The Whale Week That Was:

The Whale Week That Was - October 5, 2011 >

The Whale Week That Was – October 12, 2011 >

The Whale Week That Was – October 19, 2011 >

The Whale Week That Was – October 26, 2011 >

The Whale Week That Was – November 2, 2011 >

The Whale Week That Was – November 9, 2011 >

The Whale Week That Was – November 16, 2011 >


Click here for our full 2011-2012 Season Archive >

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Posted by Kevin Baumer | November 16, 2011 at 01:01 pm

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