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The Habs may be locked out but that doesn't stop the HW Recap for returning for its eighth year. While the lockout is ongoing, the focus will shift to the Hamilton Bulldogs, a team that split a home-and-home with the Marlies this past week. The Habs' ECHL affiliate, the Wheeling Nailers, did not have a good week as they are winless in four games now. Plus, my Final Thought looks at what the expectations should be for the Bulldogs this season.
The Dog Pound
The Bulldogs followed up a solid win in Grand Rapids with a win in their home opener but couldn't get anything going the following night in Toronto.
News and Notes:
- Is it too early to say, "Here we go again" when it comes to injuries? Starting netminder Cedrick Desjardins is out for a couple more weeks while Louis Leblanc suffered a right ankle injury on Saturday night. Morgan Ellis and Joonas Nattinen were also not 100% to kick off the season.
- Line combos from the most recent game:
It was the 'young veterans' who carried the offence for the most part this week.
Assists: Darryl Boyce (2)
Points: Aaron Palushaj (3)
+/-: Brendon Nash (+2)
PIMS: Michael Blunden (13)
Shots: Aaron Palushaj (15)
Hamilton vs Rochester
October 26: Toronto vs Hamilton
October 28: Abbotsford vs Hamilton
The Farm's Farm
It was not a good week to say the least for the Nailers as they managed a whopping two goals in three straight losses. In fact, they have just four goals on the season in as many games. Rather than track the stats for all of the players, just those who are under contract to Montreal or Hamilton will be covered here.
- Chaput is the team leader in shots with 18 on the season.
October 26: Reading vs
October 27: Reading vs Wheeling
The Bulldogs' home-and-home this past week I think will stand for a good microcosm of what's to come this year. Without a lot of proven scoring depth, I believe they will need to be opportunistic above all else to win, especially early on in the year as the rookies find their bearings. On Friday night, they withstood early pressure and then capitalized on their chances. The next night, in a game that wasn't all that one sided despite what the score would tell you, they whiffed on numerous chances which really killed them. Hamilton doesn't look like they're going to be a team that is going to dominate the play and out chance their opponents on a game-to-game basis. As a result they will need to be structurally sound which is something they are a far away away from being. There are always highs and lows in a season but with a core as young as this group, I think we're in for even more than usual. It's going to make for quite the interesting ride.
If you have any questions/comments, please feel free to drop me a line at [email protected]