Posts Tagged ‘Portland Pirates’

2011-2012 The Hockey News AHL Predictions vs End of Season Standings

April 17, 2012 - By
2011-2012 The Hockey News AHL Predictions vs End of Season Standings

At the start of every season most publications try and predict the season ending standings, something I would never want the task of doing.  I decided to take a look back at the The Hockey News predictions for the 2011/2012 season compared to the final standings and for the most part they were way off.  This is absolutely nothing against The Hockey News or our awesome local reporter who picked them, just wanted to look back.  It’s almost impossible to predict how 30 teams will finish when their lineup in September will likely be completely different once the season starts and throughout.

I don’t think anyone could have predicted the Norfolk Admirals of all teams to win their last 28 games of the regular season for a historic finish.  The list could go on but since I had posted the predictions back in October I thought I’d see how the results were.

Western Conference

Predicted Final Standings Charlotte Checkers Oklahoma City Barons Peoria Rivermen Toronto Marlies Chicago Wolves Chicago Wolves Rochester Americans Abbotsford Heat Toronto Marlies Milwaukee Admirals Houston Aeros San Antonio Rampage Hamilton Bulldogs Rochester Americans Lake Erie Monsters Houston Aeros Texas Stars Charlotte Checkers San Antonio [...]Read More

Four Teams Make Moves Around The AHL

March 3, 2012 - By
Four Teams Make Moves Around The AHL

The deadline is Monday at 3pm for American Hockey League teams and their parent clubs in the NHL to make deals and four teams have already done so.  The four teams are the St Johns IceCaps, Portland Pirates, Peoria Rivermen and Texas Stars.

Stay tuned to see if the Sabres and/or Ron Rolston think that any moves are needed to help the Amerks down the final stretch.  The Sabres are likely listening closely to what Rolston has to say and working with him as needed.  Chris Roy of the Maine Hockey Journal wrote on Facebook, “As much as Portland folks loved the Sabres organization, they were never proactive about Portland.”  This Amerks team has had needs since prior to training camp starting but nothing was ever done.  Any moves made now that can help down the stretch would be accepted but the hope is that it won’t be too little too late.

Here’s the moves so far:

The Winnipeg Jets have assigned Peter Mannino and Kenndal McArdle from the St John’s IceCaps to the Portland Pirates.

The Phoenix Coyotes have assigned Brock Trotter from the Portland Pirates to the IceCaps.

The Jets also assigned forward Michael Forney and the IceCaps [...]Read More

Florida to Finland and Back, David Leggio is Closer to Home and His Dream

October 21, 2011 - By
Florida to Finland and Back, David Leggio is Closer to Home and His Dream

David Leggio might be a new name to some Rochester Americans fans but the 27 year old undrafted goalie has traveled the world with success and plans to continue that here in town.  The Williamsville, NY native is living the dream playing as a prospect for his favorite team growing up, the Buffalo Sabres.  He’s played in Florida, Finland, Portland and now back closer to him pursuing his dream of playing in the National Hockey League.

Growing up in the Buffalo area he was also a Sabres fan and has the same favorites growing up that most of us did during the 1990’s.  When he was young he remembers watching Alexander Mogilny and then Pat LaFontaine.  Grant Fuhr was a favorite goalie to watch and then Dominik Hasek during his era in Buffalo.  As he’s gotten older Miikka Kiprusoff is a goalie he’s aways liked to watch and has shared ice time with over a recent summer.

Some kids get on the ice for the first time wanting to be a goalie but that wasn’t the case for David Leggio.  He only moved into the goalie position after he was cut as a forward from the mite travel team when he was eight [...]Read More

The Hockey News Ranks Amerks to be 4th in the West

October 6, 2011 - By
The Hockey News Ranks Amerks to be 4th in the West

The Hockey News has published it’s preview of the American Hockey League’s 2011/2012 season and the Rochester Americans are ranked 4th in the West and based on those predictions would win the North Division.  The rankings were put together by the D&C’s Kevin Oklobzija.

Thanks to Admirals Roundtable for the rankings.  Looking back at the 2010/2011 rankings Ryan from Admirals Roundtable wrote this:

– The Calder Cup finalists were ranked 16th and 27th overall.
– The division winners were ranked 19th, 3rd, 14th, and 18th.
– Four of their top 10 didn’t make the playoffs (Chicago, Worcester, San Antonio, Grand Rapids)

It’s that time of year where everyone makes predictions just because it’s the thing to do.  Everyone knows (or should know) that a season can change in a matter of weeks due to injuries, call ups, trades and even a group of players not living up to their expectations.

Here’s the rankings:

East (first to last): Hershey Bears, W-B/Scranton Penguins, Portland Pirates, Springfield Falcons, Manchester Monarchs, Syracuse Crunch, Worcester Sharks, Connecticut Whale, Binghamton Senators, Bridgeport Sound Tigers, St John’s Icecaps, Albany Devils, Norfolk Admirals, Providence Bruins, Adirondack Phantoms

West (first to last): Charlotte Checkers, Peoria Rivermen, Chicago Wolves, [...]Read More

Watch 1996 Game 7 Amerks Defeat Pirates to Win Calder Cup

August 13, 2011 - By
Watch 1996 Game 7 Amerks Defeat Pirates to Win Calder Cup

Here it is, all of game 7 from 1996 broken into three parts.  Those of you who were there will relive the night, the rest of us get to be jealous and dream of the day the War Memorial is packed wall to wall again for some exciting playoff hockey.  The three parts combined are close to three hours in length.  After you watch these if you’d like to see the RNews special that aired about the 1996 season you can see that here.

This is one of those cases where the videos speak for themselves, no need to write anything else.  Sit back and enjoy!

Part 1/3.. Pre game show, first period and first intermission:

Part 2/3.. Second period and second intermission:

Part 3/3.. Third period and cup celebration:

Enjoy and share!  Also, thanks to @TheSchlag for letting me borrow these videos to get them online!

1996 Video Highlighting Amerks Calder Cup Win

August 12, 2011 - By
1996 Video Highlighting Amerks Calder Cup Win

In 1995 the Rochester Americans home opener was October 13.  They went on to win the 1996 Calder Cup.  In 2011 the Amerks home opener is October 13th. A championship isn’t won off of one date but given hockey superstitions can’t hurt to point it out.  The Amerks defeated the Portland Pirates in seven games to win the Calder Cup on home ice on June 13, 1996, a day that is still clear as day for many fans.

What would happen during that season though was unclear.  Steve Donner had purchased the Rochester Americans from the Buffalo Sabres and rebuilt the team into what they thought would be a winner and it turned out to be just that.

“The seeds of the Calder Cup were planted in the ruins of the previous year,” is said early on in the video.

“They tried to see if a talented development team would work here and I think the answer has been a resounding no,” Steve Donner said.  “They’ve recognized that and given us a chance to change the equation to help their needs and help us for the future.”

Sounds familiar doesn’t it?  A development team with expected talent rarely wins championships. [...]Read More

Amerks Roster to see Greece Native Derek Whitmore and Veteran Colin Stuart

July 7, 2011 - By
Amerks Roster to see Greece Native Derek Whitmore and Veteran Colin Stuart

The Buffalo Sabres signed two players on Wednesday who will see most of their time in a Rochester Americans uniform, Greece native Derek Whitmore and veteran Colin Stuart.

Whitmore is a Rochester native that many local hockey fans know of.  He started his pro career in an Amerks uniform when he played in eight games at the tail end of the 2007/2008 season when the Amerks and Sabres were in the midst of their breakup.  In the past three seasons with the Portland Pirates he has increased his output each season with 2010/2011 being his best with 27 goals and 20 assists in all 80 games for the Pirates. Hopefully his production continues and the Amerks have their first player to score 30 or more goals in over half a decade.

Kevin Okolbzija sent out a tweet saying that Whitmore will earn a $95k salary in the AHL and his obvious goal is to earn his first call up to the Buffalo Sabres.  A home town player who’ll be a big part of the team should help boost ticket sales even more with his family and friends.

Colin Stuart was the other player signed on Wednesday to a one year [...]Read More

More Amerks-Sabres Fuel, Pirates-Panthers Affiliation a Possibility

June 2, 2011 - By
More Amerks-Sabres Fuel, Pirates-Panthers Affiliation a Possibility

The silly season (AHL affiliation changes) continues with this latest story that the Kennebec Journal wrote discussing the realistic possibility of the Florida Panthers and Portland Pirates affiliating.  The Panthers just hired Kevin Dineen as head coach for the Florida Panthers, Dineen had spent the previous five seasons as coach of the Portland Pirates.

For Dineen to even discuss this as a possibility just adds to the all but officially confirmed Sabres purchase of the Rochester Americans.  Dineen knows what’s going on in Portland and with his recommendation of the Panthers it could help sell Panthers hockey there.

You know what us Amerks fans say?  You can have them!  Even if they become extremely successful we’ve had enough.

“I have a place that I certainly prefer where they’ll be,” said Dineen. “I’ve worked in Portland. I know the quality of life there for the players is great for them to develop as players. I know (the Panthers) haven’t had a strong fan base there, but (the fans) are passionate about hockey.”

Also from the article:

The problem is the Pirates and Sabres agreed to an extension of their affiliation agreement last spring. It now runs through the 2013-14 season.

Still, Dineen [...]Read More

Graham Mink Drops the Gloves vs Kyle Rank

March 7, 2010 - By

Graham Mink has now gone 13 games without scoring a goal and nine without a point so what better way to try and take your mind off that than with a fight.  Here’s the video of his bout with Kyle Rank during the Amerks 3-2 win over the Portland Pirates at HSBC Arena in Buffalo.

Enjoy and share!!

Amerks Loss to Portland is like Groundhog Day

February 21, 2010 - By

It’s only fitting that as I find a movie to watch as I write about the Amerks fourth straight loss the movie Groundhog Day is on.  Can someone check the alarm clocks of the Amerks and make sure I’ve Got You Babe is not waking the players up every morning?  It sure does feel like we’re living the same games over and over, much like Bill Murray had to live the same day over and over.

The Rochester Americans get off to a good start, play with some confidence, hit some bodies, score some goals, fans are excited… and then everything changes.  The team loses it’s confidence.  The fans lose their excitement.  The other team wins.

Jamie Johnson must have been reading my mind because he said across the locker room to the media, “You guys can use the same comments I made last night and Tuesday.”

Benoit Groulx is still confident as he should be saying, “To me we can’t be more close than we are lately.  End up losing by one goal here, one goal there, bad mistake bad play here, so we’d like to believe that its coming.”

The game started out pretty [...]Read More

Gameday: Amerks Look to Stop Pirates Winning Streak

February 20, 2010 - By

The last time the Rochester Americans and Portland Pirates faced off was on November 12th at HSBC Arena in Buffalo when the Pirates won 6-3 to end the Amerks bid for a franchise record 12th straight win.  The Amerks will have a chance to end the Pirates bid for their own franchise record as they go for their 11th straight win.

It’s safe to say that there is a lot on the line with this game and I think everyone knows why without me writing about it.

The Amerks lost 4-3 on Friday night against the Manitoba Moose but insist that if they play with the same effort they had they will be succesful.  It was a similar story line last Friday and Saturday and they did find a way to win, unfortunately it ended as quick as it started.

The players and coach say that if they keep up the effort they’ll start winning games regularly again.  I think fans would love to believe that but want to see the wins first, hopefully today is the start.

The Pirates were down 2-1 against the Albany River Rats but found a way to come back and [...]Read More

Oklahoma City, Charlotte and Other Possible AHL Affiliation Changes

February 9, 2010 - By

The next six months are going to be for the American Hockey League with teams being sold, teams being moved, and affiliation changes taking place.  This post could become confusing with all of the changes and possibilities that could take place.

One thing is for certain is that the affiliation between the Rochester Americans and Florida Panthers will last through the 2010/2011 season.  Talks have not yet started about a possible extension but it was recently reported in the Democrat and Chronicle that both parties have until November 2010 to work something out.

American Hockey League President and CEO David Andrews announced today that the league’s Board of Governors has approved the relocation of the AHL franchise owned by the Edmonton Oilers from Edmonton, Alta., to Oklahoma City, Okla., to begin play there in the fall of 2010.

No, there is not currently an AHL team in Edmonton.  The Edmonton Oilers are one of many NHL teams that owns the rights to an AHL franchise so in a sense they are relocating what they own but has been dormant from Edmonton to Oklahoma City.  The still unnamed team will play at the Cox Convention Center.

In [...]Read More