Sunday, September 26, 2010
Blue and Gold are Looking Good
The Nanooks are playing high level hockey. While the blue team did pull off a 3-2 win, whats more important is how they played together.
The first thing that stands out across the board is speed. It was quite a fast game. Good cycles in the zones, and good passing. There were a few missed passes, but for the most part there were good tape to tape passes. Cycling the puck went quite well. The guys were able to move the puck around and generate some scoring chances. Obviously, the D did quite well limiting those chances. Some odd-man rushes were negated by strong defensive play. Overall, quite impressive.
One thing that I also like to look for in these games is chemistry. In other words, which players click well on the ice to and develop scoring chances.
I saw some good things between Adam Henderson and Ryan Hohl. Both of them have no problems getting physical, and when they came together, pain was inflicted. Another interesting combo was the match up between Aaron Gens and Jarrett Granberg. The two hooked up on the first goal of the game with Granberg getting the deflection, and were a post away from another. While Granberg would eventually come out of the game due to an apparent injury after a hit into the bench, but not before that intriguing pairing caught my eye.
Another intriguing part of the team is Cody Butcher. The burly junior recorded the hardest shot at 98 mph. 98! The guy has got a cannon of a shot from the point that could definitely be an instrumental part of the team. From the limited time we saw of him last season, he looks much improved. For me, its too close to call. I guess this is why I don't coach! Coach Ferguson said that it was very competitive top to bottom for ice time. Hopefully, I'll get to see Butch on the ice some more this season.
Also, as far as the fastest skater goes, the reigning champ from last year, Ronnie Meyers, lost his title to a freshman in Erik Slemp in a photo finish. I uploaded the video of the final skate to my Twitter feed, but you can see it here as well.
The 'Nooks will play the University of Windsor on Thursday, also at the Patty Ice Arena a 7. But I'm anxious to get into tournament action, starting with the Kendall Hockey Classic in Anchorage, October 8th and 9th against Air Force, and North Dakota respectively.