Belleville 1 Charlotte 2

With the trade of Andrew Hammond the logjam in goal isn’t what it was, but I’ll discuss that in detail elsewhere. On Saturday the BSens had their re-match with the talented Checkers and ultimately the game was won by the better team (it’s very reminiscent of the 3-2 shootout loss to Providence–blowing a lead late by a team that badly out-shot them). Before I get into my observations, here are the basics (box score):
Shots: 22-35
PP: 0-3
PK: 3-4
Goaltender: Hammond who was excellent (9 key saves); Danny Taylor backed up–soon to be the starter again given the trade; both Chris Driedger and Marcus Hogberg were scratched

The Opposition
Unchanged other than the goaltender; Stortini remained scratched, which was appropriate

The Goals
1. Werek tips in a high flip pass from White
2. Charlotte (PP) – soft goal from Hammond up high on a tough angle
3. Charlotte – Chabot baubles the puck at the blueline leading to a breakaway that scores five-hole on a deke

Scoring chances (7): O’Brien (x2, sh), Chlapik (x2, pp), Werek, White, Gagne (pp), Murray hit the post

The Roster
Blunden, Flanagan, Jaros, Lajoie, and Vaive remained out with injuries and Dunn as a healthy scratch–that is to say, the lineup was unchanged other than the goaltender.

Lines
Paul-O’Brien-Sexton
McCormick-White-Werek
Perron-Chlapik-Gagne
Ciampini-Reinhart-Randell
Englund-Sieloff
Chabot-Burgdoerfer
Murray-Erkamps

The top two lines changed, with Sexton joining O’Brien and Paul, and Werek joining McCormick and White (neither change had a positive impact). The defense pairs were scrambled and I’m not entirely clear why–my guess is that the changes were largely in an attempt to help Chabot, but it did not work.

Special Teams
Powerplay
Paul-White-Sexton/Chabot-Perron
Reinhart-Chlapik-Gagne/Murray-Burgdoerfer
Penalty Kill
McCormick-Sexton/Sieloff-Englund
McCormick-Sexton/Sieloff-Burgdoerfer
Paul-O’Brien/Murray-Erkamps
McCormick-White/Sieloff-Englund
Paul-Sexton/Chabot-Englund
Paul-Sexton/Murray-Burgdoerfer (scored on)
White-O’Brien/Englund-Murray

Taking Chlapik off the top PP unit was an odd choice, but it’s been apparent for the last several games that Kleinendorst has no idea what to do with the man advantage and is trying anything to get it going (the team is 0-15 the last four games).

Notable Plays
I got a sense of why Randy Lee was so eager to sign Jordan Murray at last, as the blueliner threw a couple of big hits in the game (there wasn’t much physicality in the game overall); Chlapik made a great end-to-end rush on the powerplay in the third which was followed up by him giving Murray a great opportunity (he hit the post); with the net empty both White and Murray made saves as Charlotte failed to score on three attempts.

Player Notes
Erkamps: played more five-on-five than has been typical; a mixed bag (my primary note was a turnover in the third)
Murray: outside the post he hit on the PP was most notable for a couple of turnovers and a big hit
Englund: his usual self–didn’t earn a positive or negative notation
Chabot: is still nowhere near as good as he was prior to the injury, although having no support doesn’t make it any easier
Burgdoerfer: usual mixed bag–notable turnover (something routine for him) along with a good defensive play
Sieloff: solid defensively and picked up a rare assist
Randell: played in this game–who knows why?
Reinhart: his two points this season came in the same game–it’s getting bleak for the veteran who is supposed to score
Ciampini: not a great game for him–turnovers in the first and nothing accomplish offensively
Gagne: finally got a regular rotation on the powerplay, but still gets limited usage given his production
Perron: see above–I’m not sure what it’s going to take for Kleinendorst to let their line play more
Chlapik: as the BSens production has gone down the drain the Czech rookie has played less–go figure
McCormick: solid on the PK and thankfully removed from the PP (a first), but essentially a non-factor
White: still hasn’t gelled with linemates, but on his own remains a threat
Werek: scored a goal, so still the best–right?
Paul: has that cloak of invisibility on–since Rodewald’s recall he’s been struggling offensively
O’Brien: thankfully off the powerplay, but still plays way, way, way too much
Sexton: another player looking for a good fit–no scoring chances in two straight games

Some of the problems confronting the BSens are simply a matter of talent–the lack of puck-movers from the blueline given the injuries. The forward lines need work–I like the third line, but it should be playing more, and the players currently in the top-six are not a good mix and need to be shifted around. I’d staple O’Brien and McCormick to the third line where they belong, but it’s unrealistic for me to expect Kleinendorst to do that (at least with both).

This article is written by Peter Levi (@eyeonthesens)

 

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3 Comments

  1. […] Belleville 1 Charlotte 2 […]

  2. […] Belleville 1 Charlotte 2 […]

  3. […] the BSens lost their third straight game against the Checkers and, like their previous game against them, did so after getting an early lead. Notably the game had just one official and that […]


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