Better Know An Affiliate: Carolina Hurricanes

AHL: Charlotte Checkers (51-17-7-1, 1st in Atlantic, Won Calder Cup)
TEAM LINEAGE: The defending Calder Cup Champions have been alongside their state-parent for the past decade, which makes sense for call-ups and to make the entire state familiar with the Hurricanes present and future. Prior to the Checkers being moved up to the AHL, the Canes had two affiliates with the best names in minor league hockey with the Albany River Rats and the Lowell Lock Monsters. From 1999 to 2001, the Canes actually went to the IHL for their primary affiliation with the Cincinnati Cyclones, when their previous AHL affiliate– the Beast of New Haven (and their gaudy logo)– were the team’s first affiliate from 1997 until 1999.
FREQUENT FLYER CANDIDATES: Newly signed Chase Priskie could very well make a big impact on the blueline in Charlotte that he could be back and from from the Queen City to the Triangle. Martin Necas spent some time in the big leagues last year and could see more frequency, should he continue on his solid campaign from last season. Alex Nedeljkovic is primed for another big year in the AHL after his tremendous season in 2018-19…that is if he doesn’t make the team outright from camp.

ECHL: Greenville Swamp Rabbits (25-41-3-3, 7th in South, Did Not Qualify for Playoffs)
TEAM LINEAGE: This will be the first season with the Canes and Rabbits being together. This after a solid 18-year run with the Florida Everblades, who helped bring along the aforementioned Nedeljkovic, though many of those years they split affiliation with Tampa Bay. During the 2001-02 season, the Greensboro Generals were the secondary Canes affiliate, while the Richmond Renegades were the first secondary affiliate in the team’s history.
NOTABLE GRADUATES: There hasn’t been many graduates of the Swamp Rabbits/Road Warriors’ tribe when they were with the New York Rangers, though goalies like Cam Talbot and Brandon Halverson have played in Greenville prior to their appearances in the NHL.

Minor League Monday: Marlies Rolling, Herbert Streak Snapped, Sholl Leading Thunderbolts

AHL

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Photo by Christian Bonin/TSGphoto.com

-With seven-straight wins, the Toronto Marlies are again atop the AHL in points, which should be no surprise. The past few years, the Marlies have been the favorites as the season went on, though they have no Calder Cup to show for it…yet. Andreas Johnsson has led the way for the Marlies with 17 points on the year, which includes his current seven-game point streak (4g, 5a). Garret Sparks has dazzled in net with a 1.50 GAA to go with his ten wins on the season.

-The team chasing the Marlies for league supremacy is the Manitoba Moose. After finishing at the bottom of the Western Conference their first two years back in the AHL, the Moose have been quite a surprise this year with their young stars finally getting the hang of playing in the pros. Both second-year pros Jack Roslovic (11g, 11a) and Brendan Lemieux (5g 6a) are better than a point per game– 1.05 and 1.10 respectively– while veteran Mike Sgarbossa (8g, 12a) and Buddy Robinson (7g, 7a) have provided solid secondary scoring. A bigger surprise is the bouncing back of Eric Comrie (8-4-1) who has been solid in net for the Moose with a 2.30 GAA and .927 save percentage in 13 games.

ECHL

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-A round of applause to Caleb Herbert, who finally had his 17-game point-streak snapped on Friday night. The Swamp Rabbits’ forward had 11 goals and 17 assists for 28 points during the streak that began since the beginning of the season. Herbert, unsurprisingly, leads the ECHL in points, with teammate Allan McPherson two points behind him before a trio of Wheeling Nailers pop up– Cody Wydo, Reid Gardiner, and Garrett Meurs.

-With points in seven of their last ten, the Colorado Eagles are making the most of their last season in the ECHL in their title-defense season. Michael Joly is leading the way in the ECHL in goals with 13 and has only one of his 16 games has been held pointless. Matt Register has helped out on the back-end quarterbacking the power-play and holding down play in his own end. All the while, Joe Cannata has been a near-perfect 7-0-1 on the year since being placed in Colorado by the Avalanche from San Antonio.

SPHL

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-Quietly, the Evansville Thunderbolts are having a great sophomore season in the SPHL. The play of Tomas Sholl since he came from Macon, he’s been solid with a 4-1-0 record with a 2.00 GAA in Evansville. Justin MacDonald is leading the league in goals with nine, while MacDonald, along with Dylan Clarke and John Scorcia are point-per-game players. The Thunderbolts also boast a great road record with points in six of their eight road game on the season (5-2-1). With one more road win, Evansville will match their entire road win output from last season.

Minor League Monday: Streaking Teams, Odd Scheduling, and Shaky Defense

AHL

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-With three wins in a row and won five of their last six, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers seem to be maturing as the season goes on, especially in net. Christopher Gibson and Kristers Gudlevskis have posted shutouts against Providence this weekend alone. Rookies have also taken a big role with Scott Eansor, Mitchell Vande Sompel, and (the other) Sebastian Aho being in the top-five in team scoring. The addition of Josh Ho-Sang to compliment Tanner Fritz up front will definitely make them offensively stronger moving forward.

-Despite his point-streak ending on Saturday, Andrew Mangiapane is making a name for himself in his sophomore season. With 16 points (6g, 10a) in 11 games, Mangiapane has helped the Stockton Heat lead the way in goals-for in the Pacific Division and second in the Western Conference. As a rookie, Mangiapane, along with Mark Jankowski, were the only 20-goal scorers in the Stockton, which helped Mangiapane build off of two 100-point seasons to end his OHL career. A sixth-round pick, Mangiapane could be a diamond in the rough that Calgary found to help their offensive growth.

ECHL

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-During their current four-game winning streak, the Greenville Swamp Rabbits have scored 23 goals in that span. Allan McPherson and Adam Chapie are both atop the ECHL scoring board, while Caleb Herbert is on an 11-point scoring streak from the start of the season. The only issue could be the team defense. The Swamp Rabbits are tied for the most goals given up this year. While Ty Rimmer has turned his game around a bit, the development of Brandon Halverson seems to have hit a rough patch with his 5.06 GAA in six appearances so far.

-The schedulers of the ECHL only seem to have slotted the Jacksonville IceMen to play in five games in the month of October. The IceMen are winless in those five games, but their inexperienced line-up (13 of 21 rostered players are rookies) give them a little leeway. The inexperience is showing with Jamie Phillips being 0-4-1 and a 4.21 GAA after an impressive rookie season last year in Tulsa. The upside for Jacksonville is that Alexandre Goulet has points in all five games and five goals in four of those games.

SPHL

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-While the Fayetteville Marksmen haven’t gotten much puck luck this season, the play of Jake Hauswirth, John Schiavo, and Kyle McNeil should be something to help ease the blow of being in 7th place. Hauswirth’s 11 points are a league-high, while Shiavo and McNeil are tied with Evansville’s Justin MacDonald for the league-high in goals with five. If Peter Di Salvo can get back on track, the the Marksmen could be a threat as the season goes on.