Tag Archives: Whale

SHORT ON THE MEASURING STICK

Connecticut-Whale_thumb_thumb_thumb_      VERSUS    Norfolk

On Friday night the theme approaching Saturday night’s battle with the AHL leading Norfolk Admirals was that the game would be a measuring stick as to where the team was in facing the best. After a 3-1 loss that was an exceptionally tight game right through to the end when an empty net goal sealed the win for the visitors, the answer was a resounding, not too far off.

“I think in general we stacked up pretty well. It was a close game.” Head Coach Ken Gernander said. “It was a close game. But when things are going to be that tight and decided by small margins you have to be that much more diligent. I think we made a couple of mistakes and obviously it cost us.”

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CLASH OF THE TITANS

Connecticut-Whale_thumb_thumb_thumb_      VERSUS      Bridgeport

It doesn’t get more exciting than that!

The Connecticut Whale came from behind three separate times capped by Kris Newbury’s goal off a fluke bounce with 4.9 seconds left in regulation to send the game to overtime and then after a thrilling extended period went three-for-three in the shootout defeating their franchise and intra-state rivals, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers in front of a crowd of 3,245 at the XL Center Friday night.

The win also pulled the Whale within one point the Sound Tigers for first place in the division.

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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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CLEAR DAY LIST IS PUBLIC

Here is your CTWhale clear day list.

This is the team that the Whale management gives them the best chance to win the rest of the way and to compete in the Calder Cup playoffs.

No real surprises but one question answered and that is that Sean Avery will NOT be playing for the Whale for the rest of the season. For whatever reason, and neither he nor the team have gone public with the reason why, but Avery has just not availed himself to be a part of this group and therefore won’t be playing with the Whale.

The interesting question that DOES come of this, is surrounding Avery’s future, as in, “Does he even have one in the NHL going forward?” That question will get answered this coming summer when Avery becomes an unrestricted free agent. Continue reading

WHALE WEEKLY: March 5 – 11, 2012

Bob Crawford

BY: Bob Crawford, Voice of the CTWhale

The Whale won two out of three games this past week, starting with a thrilling 2-1 shootout win over the Worcester Sharks Tuesday at the XL Center. The Whale would see a third-period lead slip away Friday, as they lost, 3-2, in Portland, but Connecticut would recover with a rousing 3-2 road victory over the Manchester Monarchs on Sunday afternoon. Wade Redden would score his first goal of the year in Friday’s contest, and Saturday he was named the sixth captain in franchise history. Kris Newbury would crack the 20-goal barrier with his score on Sunday, reaching that mark for the second time in his AHL career.

This week:

The Whale face a tough three-games-in-three-days run against teams in the Eastern Conference playoff hunt, beginning with a GEICO Connecticut Cup contest vs. the Bridgeport Sound Tigers Friday night at the XL Center (7:00 PM faceoff). The conference-leading Norfolk Admirals come to town on Saturday on Connecticut Hockey Hall of Fame night (7:00), before the Whale finishes out the weekend with another road tilt with the Manchester Monarchs on Sunday (3:00).

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MONARCHY CRUMBLES IN 3:37

Connecticut-Whale_thumb_thumb_thumb_      VERSUS      Manchester

If there’s one thing about this particular Connecticut Whale team it’s that they can lull you to sleep and then suddenly snap out of it and look like world beaters. Friday night they never woke up dropping a 3-2 decision to the Portland Pirates. That comatose-like effort carried through the first two periods Sunday afternoon, but when they finally did awaken, they scored three unanswered goals in a mere 3:37 at the Verizon Wireless Arena and then held on for a 3-2 behind some spectacular goal tending from Chad Johnson over the Manchester Monarchs.

REDDEN TO WEAR THE C

5496092722_f7d0efa886_mIn a move that is long overdue, veteran defenseman Wade Redden has been named the sixth captain in the history of the New York Rangers Hartford affiliation, first with the Wolf Pack and now with the Whale.

Head Coach Ken Gernander was the teams first captain for the Wolf Pack’s first eight seasons in existence, He was succeeded after he retired and became a coach by Craig Weller. Weller was followed Andrew Hutchinson, then  Greg Moore and the last captain was Dane Byers. The hasn’t had a captain since Byers was traded by the parent New York Rangers to the Columbus Blue Jackets on November 10, 2010 for Chad Kolarik.

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NOT ONE FOR THE HIGHLIGHT REEL

Connecticut-Whale_thumb_thumb_thumb_     VERSUS      Portland

“Coverage mistakes and lack of urgency on the back-check cost us two goals,” Whale head coach Ken Gernander told Brian Ring after the Connecticut Whale wasted a lead entering the third period for the seventh time this season and lost on the road at the Cumberland County Civic Center to the Portland Pirates 3-2 Friday night.

“We turned down some shot opportunities,”Gernander went on to add. “We’re better offensively when we’re straightforward, getting pucks to the net.”

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SPOTLIGHT: GOALIES

Bruce BerletBY: Bruce Berlet

The AHL’s two hottest teams in February resided in Connecticut, and their successes could be traced right to the goalies.

The Bridgeport Sound Tigers and Connecticut Whale were a combined 17-3-1-1 in the Leap Year Month and entered March tied for the Northeast Division lead, though the Sound Tigers have two games in hand.

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IT STARTS IN THE NET

Connecticut-Whale_thumb_thumb_thumb_     VERSUS     Worcester

It’s one of the oldest cliché’s in hockey, “You build your team from the net out.” The emergence of the New York Rangers certainly starts with Henrik Lundqvist between the pipes. For the Connecticut Whale, their resurgence from a horrendous January where they didn’t win a game (0-6-3-2), certainly starts and ends with the performance of Chad Johnson.

There’s no other way to describe it; Johnson is on a tear. After leading his team to a 2-1 shootout victory in a Tuesday morning matinee at the XL Center over the Worcester Sharks, the Calgary, Alberta native has posted a sparkling 7-1-1 record with a 1.49 goals-against average and an eye-popping .952 save percentage stopping 276 of the 290 shots he faced.

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