Watching this one live on the B2 feed.
1. Johnstown- Kindle, (Tallari)(PP)
is in the lineup and wearing #33 and playing center again. Clearly the organization is recasting him and this demotion may be part of the process of changing his position. He had one good rush about 15 minutes in carrying a man on his back for a scoring chance. The Chiefs started out very slow and were put on the penalty kill early where Jonathan Boutin
made a couple of big saves including a play where he made the first stop on a shot from the left wing, kicked a bad rebound out to the right wing circles but lunged to his right to make the glove save. Chiefs didn't get on track until they drew a 4 minute double minor and Kindle got his goal on the first half. Still, the Chiefs have not been strong along the wall and winning one on one battles in the trenches. Reading hit two posts in the period and could easily have the lead. And Doug Andress is taking a beating.[/i]
2. Reading- Pandolfo, (Peverly, Rudkowsky) (PP)
[i]Even though the tying goal was scored early in the period, on the balance this was a better period for Johnstown than the first in my opinion. The goal came on a 3-on-2 on a power play rush for Reading on which Kindle was caught flat footed and beaten badly inside the Chiefs zone resulting in a 2-on-0 down low. Boutin had no chance. The forecheck started to get going a little for the Chiefs this period with the veterans like Spence and Bittner, but it's certainly not up to the standards of the Lightning system yet. Doug Andress started to give as much as he was taking in this period, and that was a good sign. Penalty trouble at the end of the period is cause for concern however and Reading is starting to build momentum. Boutin may have to face a lot more chances in the third. Rosehill has been solid given his youth.[/i]
3. Johnstown- Hrdel, (Tallari, Manzano)
4. Reading- Stephenson, (Peverly)
5. Reading- Pandolfo, (unassisted) (SH)
[i]Not a very cohesive effort tonight by Johnstown, who were lucky to have a lead in the third period and coughed it up quickly. Boutin stopped 30 of 33 in the game and took the loss. There were times he was very good at staying square to shooters and using an economy of movement but there were others, as on Reading's second goal, where he seemed to be out of control positionally moving laterally. You cannot fault him much on the game winning goal as Tallari made a bad turnover at the right point on the power play which gave Pandolfo the breakaway for the shorthanded goal.
Henrich got killed most of the night on faceoffs although he won a key one at the end with the extra attacker as Johnstown tried to tie it. The urgency in his game didn't seem to arrive until the third period, as with a lot of the Chiefs. I expected more from a guy with so much AHL experience and being given so much ice time.
Hrdel was largely invisible much of the game until the third. And even then, his goal aside, he didn't generate nearly the amount of offensive pressure one would like from someone with his scoring bona fides from Rimouski. He desperately needs to learn to use his size to create more in traffic and on the forecheck, although the entire Chiefs team struggled to generate much along the wall.
has a lot to learn still but he was solid for such a young player. Of all the Lightning prospects he might've been the most impressive to me tonight and you can see some potential parallels between he and former Lightning Jassen Cullimore in their size and playing style.
Brandon Elliot didn't seem to play the amount that the other prospects did and perhaps he should have. He wouldn't have been any less effective on the forecheck than the rest of the Chiefs. Coach Anzalone did a lot of line shuffling in this game and Elliot did see a few shifts with Henrich.
All in all though, the coach has his work cut out for him. This was a group tonight that struggled to play with much continuity and didn't play anything resembling the Lightning's system. The first building block that has to be put in place is for the team to compete physically along the wall though. Other than Spence no one was doing that consistently, and the forecheck is the key to just about any North American style hockey team but especially one looking to pattern itself after the Lightning. Also, the Chiefs' defensemen really need to work on their breakout passing. Simply attrotious all game long.
So its back to the drawing board.[/i]