Last night’s game was the first in a long while where I didn’t have my notepad with me, but there was still a bunch of stuff that I wanted to mention.
First off, the ice was terrible. Ballou had a bit about it in his story in today’s Telegram, but it was obvious from the get go that the ice wasn’t right. During nearly every stoppage in play the linesmen were making repairs, and you could see some areas the dark spots of the concrete.
That was all due to the fact that Disney on Ice was at the DCU Center last weekend, and the turnaround from that to hockey is not as easy as it sounds. It obviously would have been better had the game been played Wednesday, but that would have given the Railers a four-in-five, which is something that teams try to avoid.
I’m presuming the ice will be fine on Friday.
Have to give a shout out to Railers President Mike Myers. As he often did in the WorSharks days during midweek games, Myers joined me and Booster Club President Rich Lundin at our seats in front of the press box. While Myers was telling us about the cool Slap Shot jerseys the Railers are wearing Saturday the puck flew into the stands and hit a spectator.
The puck had barely stopped moving before Myers was out of his seat and headed to the person hit with the puck, arriving so quickly he beat the usher to the scene. Even though the EMTs were summoned it didn’t look serious, but had it been bad Myers was there to make sure everything that should be done was done.
Yeah, that’s part of his job. Still was great to see though.
On to the game…head coach Jamie Russell sent five forwards out on the power play a few times. I used to be not a fan of that, thinking that you really should have at least one defenseman “just in case”. But when you look at teams that use four forwards and a single defenseman that blueliner is almost always a puck-moving, offensive guy, and generally isn’t a “plus” defender anyway. So how much different would be it to put a defensive minded forward back there?
I guess we’re going to find out.
Russell’s young team did find out what happens when you take a few shifts off. If you’re not bailed out by your goaltender the puck ends up in the back of your net. That happened twice as Toledo’s first and third goals were because the Railers got outworked. The first goal was kind of a bad bounce, but a hustling team doesn’t allow that opportunity to take place at all.
Railers play three at home this weekend against the Reading Royals, and I’ve got the Friday and Sunday games for “this Week in Worcester”. I’ll probably have a notes posting for at least those two, and maybe Saturday’s game as well.
So until then…