The AHL All Star festivities and mid-season break were earlier this week, and we will return to the ice on Saturday - for our third consecutive game against Rochester. The Flames entered the All Star break by ending a four game losing streak with a 4-1 home defeat of Rochester. The keys to the victory were the continued strong play of David Wolf and Joni Ortio's return to the crease.
- David Wolf, who as called up on Monday (along with Baertschi and Wotherspoon), has been dominate of late. In his last six games, he has 7 goals, 2 assists and is +6. The big winger is not the most fluid skater, but has good speed, works the tough parts of the ice well, and plays with an edge.
- Markus Granlund had a strong return to Adirondack - with a goal and assist against the Amerks. He had Michael Ferland and Garnet Hathaway on his wings, and this line looked very good Saturday.
- Max Reinhart, who looked a bit lost on the ice earlier this month - played two strong games last weekend, yielding a goal and an assist. He had Emile Poirier and David Wolf on his wings this past weekend.
- Brian McGrattan dressed the last two games, and was... well... awful. Although he had a goal last Friday, he has looked totally uninterested on the ice. Even with the move down to the AHL, he really had trouble keeping up with the speed of the game and was very weak in the back check.
- David Carr, called up from the ECHL while Ortio was in Calgary, got his first AHL start of this season last Friday in Rochester. Although he took the loss, he played a pretty strong game in the 3-2 loss. Two of Rochester's goals were on the power play, with the winner being scored late in the third, seconds after the Flames killed the end of a long 5-3 situation.
Emile Poirier and Drew Shore participated in the AHL All Star activities in Utica and made solid showings. Poirier and Shore each had a goal and and two assists in the West's 14-12 win (gotta love those defensive focused all star games !!). Joni Ortio was also named an AHL All Star, but was held out of the game.