Around The AHL

Mid-season team assessments

Mid-season team assessments

by Patrick Williams - December 30, 2010 1:40 PM EST

As the AHL season approaches the halfway mark, we take a look at some noteworthy achievements and disappointments.
It won't be long before clubs reach the 40-game mark. Time enough to suss out some trends for the first half of the American League season. Some teams are proceeding as expected - good, bad or otherwise – while others have overachieved or underachieved.


Murray works on comeback

Murray works on comeback

by Patrick Williams - December 23, 2010 11:47 AM EST

After he was unable to find employment and began the year in the ECHL, Garth Murray made his was back to the AHL with hopes for more.
Most players are happy to grab a rare stretch of extended time off, such as the week veteran center Garth Murray and the Manitoba Moose get for the holiday break.


How off-season additions have fared

How off-season additions have fared

by Patrick Williams - December 16, 2010 2:50 PM EST

We analyze how the off-season work has paid off for certain teams.
Like the NHL, the American League has its own frenzy of summer signings. Some of those deals yield results, but a busy summer is no guarantee of playoff success the following spring.


Good and bad surprises

Good and bad surprises

by Patrick Williams - December 9, 2010 3:30 PM EST

As the AHL passes the one-third mark of the season, we look at some of the bigger shockers, for better or worse.
American League clubs have played roughly one-third of their 80-game schedule and some trends are beginning to take hold. Clubs that are doing some unexpected damage can no longer be considered flukes and teams that were seen as contenders, but have instead flopped may be in deep trouble if they do not begin to collect points immediately.


Denis Hamel returns to lead young Phantoms

Denis Hamel returns to lead young Phantoms

by Patrick Williams - December 2, 2010 3:25 PM EST

The AHL veteran who scored 56 goals in 2005-06, is on a tryout contract, but is working to stay on full-time.
At age 33, Denis Hamel's prospect days are well behind him, but the Adirondack Phantoms acquisition still has a role to play in prospect development.


IceHogs' Exelby eyeing NHL return

IceHogs' Exelby eyeing NHL return

by Patrick Williams - November 25, 2010 2:45 PM EST

After being an NHL mainstay for seven years, Garnet Exelby couldn't find a job last summer and landed in the AHL.
The American League doesn’t just exist to polish first round picks and other top prospects before they head off to long NHL careers.   Many AHL players are former NHL regulars scrambling to regain the big-league roster spot they once held.


Cody Hodgson hits stride with Manitoba

Cody Hodgson hits stride with Manitoba

by Patrick Williams - November 18, 2010 3:35 PM EST

Cody Hodgson was supposed to be an immediate hit in the NHL, so it was worrying to see him off to a slow AHL start.
Many observers assumed Cody Hodgson would bypass the American League altogether. After all, the thinking went, Hodgson was a highly touted first round pick and would slot in nicely on coach Alain Vigneault's roster with the Vancouver Canucks.


Giroux dreaming of NHL

Giroux dreaming of NHL

by Patrick Williams - November 11, 2010 3:50 PM EST

Oklahoma City's top-line center is off to another hot start in the AHL, but will it be enough to finally get him into the NHL?
You would think scoring 139 regular season and playoff goals over two American League seasons would be enough to land you an NHL ride. That’s just what Alexandre Giroux of the Oklahoma City Barons did from 2008 to 2010, but the veteran AHL sniper finds himself back in the minors again.


Diminutive Desharnais an offensive whiz

Diminutive Desharnais an offensive whiz

by Patrick Williams - November 4, 2010 3:15 PM EDT

Wherever he goes, undrafted David Desharnais puts up a pile of points, but he's still waiting for his chance to become a full-time NHLer.
NHL teams, scouts and other powers-that-be passed on David Desharnais when he was draft eligible, but the Hamilton playmaker is establishing himself as a legitimate prospect, anyway.


Nazem Kadri settles in

Nazem Kadri settles in

by Patrick Williams - October 28, 2010 3:21 PM EDT

After a lot of talk surrounded Kadri's demotion to the Marlies, the youngster has responded with a few strong performances.
Nazem Kadri's dangles, footwork and toe-drags will earn him time on highlight segments, but it will not be his route to a permanent NHL job. After much angst and media controversy during training camp, the Toronto Maple Leafs sent the 20-year-old rookie to the Toronto Marlies to begin an American League apprenticeship.


Derek Meech leads Griffins defense

Derek Meech leads Griffins defense

by Patrick Williams - October 21, 2010 3:35 PM EDT

After passing through waivers, Derek Meech returns to the AHL as a minute-munching veteran.
Derek Meech was one day away from joining the Detroit Red Wings for his fourth season when he found himself officially pushed out of the NHL fraternity Oct.


Moose learn from Noel

Moose learn from Noel

by Patrick Williams - October 14, 2010 2:00 PM EDT

New Manitoba coach Claude Noel brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the bench the parent Canucks club will love.
If Guy Boucher is the exciting new coaching story in NHL circles, then Claude Noel ranks amongst the most interesting of new American League coaching hires.


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