Tag Archives: Pat Boller

SPOTLIGHT: “PAPA” REDDEN, THE CAPTAIN

Bruce BerletBY: Bruce Berlet

When the Connecticut Whale gathered for a team meal Saturday night in Manchester, N.H., coach Ken Gernander had a surprise, especially for veteran defenseman Wade Redden.

After the Whale had been without a captain for nearly 16 months, Gernander announced he and assistants J.J. Daigneault and Pat Boller had decided the man affectionately known as “Papa” would be wearing the “C” for the first time in his illustrious career. Redden had been an assistant captain several times, including since he arrived in Hartford last season, but never was the official leader of the pack.

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WHALE EXORCIZE LOSING STREAK WITH WIN OVER DEVILS

Connecticut Whale     VERSUS      Albany Devils

BY: Mitch Beck

If Connecticut Whale head coach Ken Gernander had any hair, he’d probably be pulling it out about now. His team did win on the road Saturday night knocking off the Albany Devils 3-2 in a shootout in front of 3,006 at the Times Union Arena, but they came awfully close to repeating the ills that plague them blowing a lead, but in this case finding a way to win.

“It was little frustrating with the penalties in the third period,” Gernander told reporters afterwards. “But we battled through it and got the two points to finish off the week because it will set us up for next weekend with a long week of practice and rematches with St. John’s (in Newfoundland on Saturday and Sunday).”

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BRUCE BERLET REPORTS – “SO THAT’S A LATTE AND A HOCKEY CONTRACT TO GO?”

BY: Bruce Berlet

Kale Kerbashian joined the New York Rangers organization literally over a cup of coffee and a vanilla milkshake.

The smallish (5-foot-11, 165 pounds) but quick forward was interviewing with Rangers scout Rich Brown at a Starbucks in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada, when he got an offer to play for one of the NHL’s Original Six teams.

“He had watched me all season, and I guess he liked what he saw so they gave me a chance,” Kerbashian recalled. “I loved coming down (to Hartford) and staying in the Homewood Suites. It was great.”

Kerbashian got a three-week taste of pro hockey in April after he signed AHL and amateur tryout contracts after completing his junior career with Sarnia of the Ontario Hockey League. He had 63 goals and 81 assists in 126 games in two seasons in Sarnia and chipped in two goals and one assist in four games with the ECHL’s Wheeling Nailers in 2010. Continue reading

HUMPTY-DUMPTY

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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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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FROM THE CREASE with Bruce Berlet

By Bruce Berlet

The Connecticut Whale reached the AHL All-Star break on a bummer after their most disheartening defeat of the season.

But a 3-2 loss to the Portland Pirates on Derek Whitmore’s power-play goal with 7.5 seconds left before 10,872, the second largest crowd of the season at the XL Center, didn’t erase the often hard-to-fathom job that coach Ken Gernander, assistants J.J. Daigneault and Pat Boller and the players have done in keeping the Whale and parent New York Rangers challenging for playoff spots.

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FROM THE CREASE with Bruce Berlet

bruce mug shot 1By Bruce Berlet

EAST HARTFORD, CT – As Howard Baldwin and his son, Howard Jr., walked into the Rentschler Field press box just after noon Thursday, their jaws seemingly dropped to the floor as they spoke as one.

“Awesome,” they said in stereo while getting their first look at the start of the rink that will host Outdoor Harvest-Properties.com Whalers Fest 2011 on Feb. 11-23.

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FROM THE CREASE with Bruce Berlet

bruce mug shot 1By Bruce Berlet

The XL Center could have made some serious money selling programs Tuesday if Connecticut Whale practice was open to the public.

Coach Ken Gernander and assistants J.J. Daignault and Pat Boller were in scramble mode again thanks to a plethora of injuries and illness that had a substitute goalie in one net and two defensemen playing forward with a junior player rehabbing with the Whale after offseason shoulder surgery.

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