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Laval had a week where all three opponents were behind them in the North Division standings.  However, they were only to win one of those matchups, resulting in a sizable blow to their postseason hopes.

The Week That Was

March 27: Utica 3, Laval 1 – Jacob Perreault’s first goal with the Rocket gave Laval the lead early in the second and they held onto it for a while before Chase Stillman tied it early in the third.  It looked like overtime was a legitimate possibility but the Comets scored with a little over four minutes left before adding an empty netter to secure the win.

March 29: Laval 2, Belleville 1 – This game was the Jakub Dobes show as he was pretty much the only reason Laval was in the game.  He got an early goal from William Trudeau while Brandon Gignac potted the eventual winner midway through the second period and the Rocket more or less held on from there as they struggled to generate much against Belleville’s defence, a sign of things to come.

March 30: Belleville 5, Laval 2 – Things didn’t change much compared to the night before in terms of who controlled the play as the Senators were all over the Rocket early.  This time, Kasimir Kaskisuo wasn’t able to hold them back and the Sens had four goals before the midway mark of the second, a deficit Laval wasn’t able to get that close to coming back from.



# Player GP G A +/- SOG PIMS
4 Tobie Bisson 3 0 1 E 5 0
12 Filip Cederqvist 2 0 0 +2 4 0
15 Sean Farrell 3 0 1 -2 2 0
16 Arnaud Durandeau 2 0 0 -1 3 0
19 Emil Heineman 3 0 2 -3 4 0
20 Gabriel Bourque 3 0 2 +2 4 0
21 Riley Kidney 3 0 0 -1 4 2
24 Logan Mailloux 3 0 1 -4 4 4
27 Mitchell Stephens 3 0 2 -1 1 2
28 Lias Andersson 3 0 0 -3 12 2
29 Mattias Norlinder 1 0 0 -1 0 2
34 Jacob Perreault 3 1 0 E 5 4
37 Brandon Gignac 3 1 0 -3 6 0
42 Lucas Condotta 3 1 0 +1 2 0
44 Olivier Galipeau 2 0 0 -3 2 0
52 Justin Barron 3 0 0 -3 6 2
61 Philippe Maillet 3 1 0 -4 8 0
64 David Reinbacher 3 0 1 +2 1 2
68 Riley McKay 2 0 0 E 0 0
84 William Trudeau 3 1 0 E 3 7


# Player Record GAA SV% SO
71 Jakub Dobes 1-1-0 1.52 .956 0
73 Kasimir Kaskisuo 0-1-0 4.22 .846 0

Team Leaders:

Goals: Gignac/Maillet (19)
Assists: Brandon Gignac (36)
Points: Brandon Gignac (55)
+/-: Olivier Galipeau (+16)
PIMS: Riley McKay (117)
Shots: Logan Mailloux (144)

News and Notes

– Standings-wise, every team but Syracuse has at least two games in hand on Laval (the Crunch only have one).  That puts a lot of Laval’s fate outside of their control.  The two teams behind Laval can catch them if they win their games in hand.

– Lucas Condotta’s goal against Belleville on Saturday was his first since January 19th (also against Belleville), snapping a 23-game goalless drought.

– Last season, Justin Barron had seven goals and nine assists in 25 games with the Rocket.  So far this year, despite playing in four more games, he has just a single goal along with nine helpers.

Last Game’s Lines

Farrell – Gignac – Heineman
Andersson – Maillet – Perreault
Bourque – Stephens – Cederqvist
Kidney – Condotta – McKay

Trudeau – Mailloux
Galipeau – Barron
Paquette-Bisson – Reinbacher

The Week Ahead

Friday vs Syracuse – On paper, this is the hardest matchup Laval has left this season as the Crunch lead the division.  That said, Laval has points in five of seven matchups so far this season and have played them relatively tough.  They’re a score-by-committee team as they have just one 20-goal scorer but have 10 other players with double-digit goals.  Former Hab Gabriel Dumont has five points in five games versus the Rocket this season.

Saturday vs Springfield – The Thunderbirds find themselves two points out of the final play-in series in the Atlantic Division so, like Laval, pretty much every game from here on out is a must-win.  The two teams met last month and it didn’t go well with Jakub Dobes getting lit up for seven goals.  Former Hab Matthew Peca is second in scoring for Springfield while Will Bitten, a former Montreal prospect, is fifth.  The Thunderbirds also have Ryan Suzuki on loan from Carolina, Nick’s brother. 

Final Thought

As of the time of writing, it’s not quite time to write the eulogy on ECHL Trois-Rivieres’ season but it sure looks as if it’s heading in that direction.  Whether it’s operations being suspended for just the rest of the season (if they’re able to find a new owner) or being shuttered entirely remains to be seen.  That’s a story for another day.

But for Laval, it’s probably going to give them something that most AHL teams don’t have at this point of the season, a taxi squad.  It stands to reason that anyone under contract to the Rocket will be promoted to Laval for the stretch run.  Even if they’re not going to play much, if at all, it will give Laval a chance to rest some players in practice at a minimum which can’t hurt.

If you’re curious, the list of AHL-contracted players for Laval are as follows:

Forwards: Jakov Novak, Alex-Olivier Voyer, Nolan Yaremko, John Parker-Jones
Defencemen: Chris Jandric, Miguel Tourigny (injured), Christopher Merisier-Ortiz
Goalies: Strauss Mann, Zacharie Emond

In past years, the Habs have turned to AHL tryouts to give the Rocket some depth down the stretch.  If Tuesday’s Board of Governors meeting goes as expected, Laval won’t have to do that this time around.