Rats skid to bottom of league
Rookie coaches, Bob Carpenter, Geordie Kinnear (assistant) and Chris Terreri (goaltender coach), are still looking for the right chemistry for the young team to gel together. Bolstered in recent weeks by the addition of Bruce Gardiner (F), Steve Guolla (C) and Joel Bouchard (D), the River Rats remain winless on the road (0-7) and have only one win in 14 contests.
In the past week, two defensemen (Sascha Goc and Josef Boumedienne) were traded, with the Devils acquiring blueliner Andrei Zyuzin from Tampa Bay in exchange. (See below, “Defensemen traded,” for more details.)
The River Rats have been blown out of only one game this season, a 7-1 drubbing at the hands of the Worcester Ice Cats on October 20. Most of the losses have been one- or two-goal games. However, the cumulative deficit of goals-for versus goals-against (-22) is the worst in the league. The deficit in shots-for versus shots-against (-171) explains why the Rats are last in the 27-team league in shots-for (22.79 per game) and second-last in shots-against (35.00).
The players either have been unable, or unwilling, to follow coach Carpenter’s repeated admonitions to get the puck in deep in the attack zone. As a result, time of possession in the offensive zone is substantially less than in their own zone. Goaltenders, despite decent work in net, have paid the price.
It has been three weeks since the River Rats won a game, their 6-3 victory at home against Portland. Since then, the team has the unenviable distinction of having the league’s longest Read more »