Below is a photo essay of my trip to see the Chicago Wolves this weekend.
My Q&A with Sterling is up at HF, by the way.
Joey Crabb directing traffic. He played really well this weekend. Don't write him off for a role down the road. He has a really good vertical leap, by the way. He went literally skipping by me, and managed to say hi at the same time.
Not only are four guys in a formation standing all the same, all of them are righties. That's probably why they choose to stand together though. It's Brian Fahey, Kevin Doell, Andre Deveaux and Grant Lewis.
Grant Lewis dribbling a puck on his stick at warmups. He's having trouble staying in the lineup. His fundamentals are good, but just needs to adjust to the quicker game. Sadly there is no photo of the getup he had on after Saturday's game as I talked to him -- a towel skirt and his jersey. I couldn't resist commenting,"nice outfit."
Jon Awe in the green of the Houston Aeros. It was the first game he's played for them this year. The green is pretty powerful, and makes them look like a motley band of leprechauns. Houston is banged up right now, which opened a spot. He could be back in Gwinnett by next weekend though.
Bench shot. Notice that because it's a short one, some guys have to sit on chairs on the riser behind.
Center faceoff. The 2007-08 logo is sharp. The ice was shaky on Saturday because not only had the circus been in town, but there was a concert the night before, and a basketball game that day.
Kevin Doell makes a face as he stretches.
Karel Pilar looks incredulously at the San Antonio Rampage.
Nathan Oystrick passing.
Oystrick, Jordan LaVallee, Steve Martins and Deveaux.
LaVallee has an A on his sweater this year. I talked to him about this, as well as Coach Anderson, which will be in a forthcoming article. Relatedly, if he's going to have a letter, he'll need to learn to speak to the media. At this point, be careful not to ask him yes or no questions, because you'll get yes or no answers. Captains need to be able to provide some kind of insight, win, lose, draw, sleet, snow or hail. And that's a standard expectation, not just me saying it. Reporters often compare notes on who is a good quote, and right now I'd put him on my avoid list. Good player, but a chore to talk to.
If you forgot how big Brian Sipotz is, here's a reminder.
A blast from the past -- Chris Durno, former Gladiator, plays for San Antonio. That's him losing the faceoff. I saw him doing lunges by the locker room before the game and said a brief hello. His skating has improved. When he first turned pro, the Gladiators at first didn't have room for him and waived him -- no one picked him up. Then they had some injuries and took him on again. Now he's a regular in the AHL. Just goes to show how up and down people's paths are sometimes.
Robert Gherson is on a PTO during Kari Lehtonen's injury. The Wolves will have to let him go soon, but I'm sure he'll catch on somewhere else as well as he's playing lately.
And what game would be complete without Anderson cussing at the ref?
Here he's telling LaVallee to go serve the bench minor for unsportsmanlike. No doubt brought on by the cussing.