Tag Archives: Justin Soryal


bruce mug shot 1BY: Bruce Berlet

Dale Purinton and Richard Scott early on and Justin Soryal and Devin DiDiomete lately have been energetic instigators/enforcers who earned the respect of teammates and love from fans in the 14-year history of the Hartford Wolf Pack/Connecticut Whale.

Jason Wilson might soon join those ranks.

“Wilson is a baby gorilla,” The Prospect Park’s Jess Rubenstein, a highly regarded follower and analyst of junior and college player, said of the 6-foot-3, 208-pound left wing. “Niagara played him with Ryan Strome, the fifth pick by the New York Islanders (on June 24), using him as a power forward/enforcer. He’s a real likeable person who wants to improve his game. He should do well with the Whale.”

Wilson chuckled when told of Rubenstein’s “baby gorilla” description but didn’t mince words about his style.

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bruce mug shot 1BY: Bruce Berlet

The melancholy filtered through the phone line.

Brodie Dupont, the player with the longest standing with the Hartford Wolf Pack/Connecticut Whale, had got his wish this week when he was qualified by the parent New York Rangers.

But Saturday the multi-purpose forward suddenly found himself headed elsewhere.

Dupont, a third-round pick in 2005 who played in his first NHL game last season, was traded to the Nashville Predators for forward Andreas Thuresson.

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Justin Soryal, who has been the Hartford Wolf Pack / Connecticut Whale enforcer for the past three seasons will join another ex-Wolf Pack player, Bobby Sanguinetti when he joins the Carolina Hurricanes AHL club in Charlotte.

Here’s the official release from the Carolina Hurricanes announcing the signing:

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Connecticut WhaleFor young restricted free agents, whether their parent teams qualify them or not is one of the most stressful times of their career.

Get qualified and the dream continues. Don’t be qualified and you’re hitting the unemployment line looking for work.

For the New York Rangers that time has come and gone and all of their restricted free agents have found out what’s in the envelope.


Connecticut-Whale_thumb4_thumb_thumb VERSUS    

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Couldn’t put Humpty together again

The Connecticut Whale had been, to paraphrase Annie Savoy (New York Rangers’ fan, Susan Sarandon) in the film Bull Durham,  “for whatever reason, were playing hockey with joy and verve and poetry.”

9,276 witnesses at the XL Center on Saturday, on a night that the franchise honored Gordie Howe and his family no less, watched the Connecticut Whale come crashing off the wall like Humpty Dumpty and put forth one of their  worst efforts of the season in a fight filled, undisciplined and very sloppy 5-1 loss to the visiting Bridgeport Sound Tigers.

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Connecticut-Whale_thumb4_thumb_thumb VERSUS Springfield

“That was what  we call in hockey, ‘a greasy win,’” Connecticut Whale Assistant Coach J.J. Daigneault said his team gutted one out and defeated the Springfield Falcons 3-1 Sunday afternoon in front of 4, 985 at the XL Center. “But we’ll take it,” He said with a smile.

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FROM THE CREASE with Bruce Berlet

bruce mug shot 1By Bruce Berlet

If the Connecticut Whale survives another wild playoff chase better than a year ago, they can look back to a 9-2 drubbing in Toronto on Feb. 9 as the turning point of the season.

After tying franchise records for most goals allowed and largest margin of defeat, coach Ken Gernander and assistants J.J. Daigneault and Pat Boller had a video session and discussion with the team in Toronto before heading to Hamilton.

The message of the meeting? It’s never too late to back-check.

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Connecticut-Whale_thumb4_thumb_thumb VERSUS Wilkes Barre

If you were looking to make the argument against having two referees on the ice at the same time, or maybe just having these two particular referees period, this would be the game that you’d point to as exhibit number one. However despite the atrocious job from referee’s Jaime Koharski and Jameel Chaudry did in this one, the Connecticut Whale managed to overcome two Wilkes-Barre Scranton leads in the first period and came from behind to beat the Penguins 5-2 in front of 5,742 at the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza Tuesday night.

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Connecticut-Whale_thumb4 VERSUS  Portland

If there’s one thing that’s consistent about the Connecticut Whale in 2010-2011, it’s that they don’t win many games pretty; that’s for sure.

Tuesday afternoon’s holiday matinee in Portland was no different. The Whale brought a one-goal lead into the third period, gave up another late goal in regulation and then went on to win in overtime 2-1 on a Wade Redden shorthanded goal in front of 5,574 at the Cumberland County Civic Center. Continue reading


Connecticut Whale VERSUS     Portland

There’s a popular old saying that goes, “Better Late Than Never.” However if you asked the Connecticut Whale players what they thought about that saying and how it played a part in their Saturday night demise, a stunning 3-2 loss on a goal with just 7.5 seconds remaining, they’d likely vote to unanimously change it to, “Better Never Than Late.”

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