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Weekly Syracuse Crunch Roundup 11.27.13

by Staff Writer / Tampa Bay Lightning

Last Week

Fri., Nov. 22 - Crunch at Hamilton - L, 4-1

Sat., Nov. 23 - Crunch vs. Hamilton - L, 3-0

This Week

Wed., Nov. 27 - Crunch at Binghamton - 7:05 p.m.

Fri., Nov. 29 - Crunch vs. St. John's - 7 p.m.

Sat., Nov. 30 - Crunch at Adirondack - 7 p.m.

Need to Know

- Nikita Kucherov was recalled by Tampa Bay Monday and scored his first NHL goal on his first NHL shot.

- The Crunch lost twice to Hamilton in Week 8, as former Crunch goalie Dustin Tokarski stopped 68 of 69 shots.

- Syracuse plays a home game Friday vs. St. John's, sandwiched by road games Wednesday and Saturday.

Syracuse (9-6-1-1) slipped to eighth in the Eastern Conference with two losses over the weekend against the Hamilton Bulldogs, 4-1 Friday at Bell Centre in Montreal and 3-0 Saturday at the War Memorial.

The Crunch look to snap a four-game losing streak when their Week 9 slate begins Wednesday in Binghamton. Syracuse then plays at home on Black Friday vs. the St. John's IceCaps and visits the Adirondack Phantoms Saturday.


- 11/27/2013 Philip-Michael Devos singed to PTO (AHL)

- 11/27/2013 Dana Tyrell (RW) Recalled from loan by Tampa Bay (NHL)

- 11/26/2013 Dmitry Korobov (D) Returned on loan from Tampa Bay (NHL)

- 11/25/2013 Max Parent (C) Recalled from loan to Florida (ECHL)

- 11/24/2013 Dmitry Korobov (D) Recalled from loan by Tampa Bay (NHL)

- 11/24/2013 Nikita Kucherov (RW) Recalled from loan by Tampa Bay (NHL)

- 11/22/2013 Brett Connolly (RW) Returned on loan from Tampa Bay (NHL)

- 11/20/2013 Dmitry Korobov (D) Returned on loan from Tampa Bay (NHL)

Kucherov scores in NHL debut

Nikita Kucherov, a 20-year-old rookie, got his first call up to Tampa Bay Sunday and made his NHL debut Monday, scoring on his first shot. His goal 2:12 into the first was the earliest goal by player in his NHL debut since 2006. He's the second Crunch player to score in his NHL debut since the team's affiliation with Tampa Bay; Cory Conacher scored in his first Lightning game Jan. 19, 2013. Mike Angelidis also scored in his first NHL game, Jan. 24, 2012, when Tampa Bay was affiliated with Norfolk.

In team history, seven Lightning players have scored in their NHL debut: Kucherov, Conacher, Angelidis, Ryan Craig ('05-06), Jimmie Olvestad (01-02), Paul Mara ('98-99) and Alex Selivanov ('94-95).

Kucherov, 20, is Syracuse's leader in goals (13), points (24), and power-play goals (6). October's CCM/AHL Rookie of the Month has five points more than any other rookie. Kucherov, from Maikop, Russia, was CCM/AHL Player of the Week Oct. 28-Nov. 3 recording nine points (5g, 4a) in three games.

Korobov shuffle continues

Dmitry Korobov is counting the miles more than usual lately. Twice recalled to Tampa Bay and twice returned to Syracuse in the last 14 days, the 24-year-old defenseman is back with the Crunch and should be available for Wednesday's game in Binghamton. Korobov made his NHL debut Nov. 19 against the L.A. Kings; he did not play Monday vs. the New York Rangers during his latest one-day call-up. In 15 games with the Crunch the Novopolotsk, Belarus native has six assists, 15 penalty minutes and a team-high plus-7 rating.

Former University Cup champ Max Parent comes to Syracuse

Max Parent, 25, was recalled from ECHL-Florida Monday. He has appeared in two games for the Everblades collecting one point, a game-winning goal Oct. 18. Last season injuries restricted the Lery, Quebec native to three games with the Everblades, totaling three points (2g, 1a). Before launching his pro career, the 6-1, 217-lb. forward played four years at McGill University in Montreal totaling 101 points (42g, 59a) in 145 regular season and postseason games. As an alternate captain, he helped the Redmen capture their first CIS University Cup in 2012.

Organizational depth

Monday night Nikita Kucherov became the 21st player to appear for the Syracuse Crunch and Tampa Bay Lightning since the clubs partnered before the 2012-13 season. Last season seven players were called up from Syracuse for their NHL debut with Tampa Bay, more than any other organization. This season two Crunch players have made their NHL debut with Tampa Bay, Kucherov and Dmitry Korobov. A total of 53 American Hockey League players have made their NHL debut in 2013-14, plus two coaches.

To fill the void left by injuries and promotions, the Crunch have called on talent from their ECHL affiliate, the Florida Everblades. Max Parent, recalled from Florida Monday, is poised to make his AHL debut and would become the sixth player to appear for Syracuse and Florida this season. (Kristers Gudlevskis, Danick Gauthier, Charles Landry, Jordan Henry, Carl Nielsen). In 2012-13 four players (Gauthier, Landry, Alex Hutchings and Pat Nagle) played for both teams.

During the 2012-13 season 40 different players appeared for the Crunch. Parent would be the 28th player to suit up for the Crunch so far this year. At this date last season 24 players had appeared in at least one game for the Crunch; J.F. Jacques became the 28th player to suit up for the Crunch Jan. 25, 2013.

Sources of scoring

Injuries in Syracuse and Tampa Bay have left the Crunch without several of their top scorers. With Nikita Kucherov and J.T. Brown in Tampa Bay and Vladislav Namestnikov injured, Matt Taormina's ten points (2g, 8a) are the most among available players. J.P. Cote and Nikita Nesterov are tied for second with eight points; both have two goals and six assists this season.

Rookie Cedric Paquette has scored the most goals (4) of available Crunch players. Dana Tyrell's three goals is the second highest total. Paquette and Tyrell are the only players with more than two goals. Five available Crunch players (Taormina, Cote, Nesterov, Gauthier, Sergeev) have exactly two goals this season; none have just one goal.

The week in review

Game 16: Syracuse can't keep up with Hamilton in Montreal

The Crunch dropped their third straight game Friday, losing to the Bulldogs 4-1 at the Bell Centre in Montreal.

Former Crunch forward Mike Blunden opened the scoring at 15:55 of the first period. Morgan Ellis and Gabriel Dumont added goals in the second period to give Hamilton a 3-0 lead after two. J.P. Cote extended his point streak to six games when he scored with just under five minutes left in the final frame. Tanner Richard and Phil Paradis picked up assists on the goal.

Blunden added his second of the night when he scored into the empty net with a minute left in the game.

Cedrick Desjardins made 23 saves on 26 shots for the Crunch. Former Crunch goalie Dustin Tokarski made 25 saves on 26 shots for Hamilton.

Game 17: Tokarski and the Bulldogs blank the Crunch

Syracuse was shut out for the first time since March 30, and the first time at home since the Bulldogs' last trip to the War Memorial on March 22. A trio of power play goals helped Hamilton defeated the Crunch 3-0 Saturday, extending Syracuse's winless streak to four games. Syracuse fired its most shots on goal of the season, 43, but Dustin Tokarski turned them all away for his second shutout win in as many games at the War Memorial since being traded last February.

Cedrick Desjardins allowed only power-play goals, first from Christian Thomas, son of Steve Thomas, early in the second period. Defenseman Greg Pateryn extended the Hamilton lead to 2-0 laster in the second with his fourth goal of the season. Nathan Beaulieu made it 3-0 with his second of the year.

The Crunch power play continued to struggle (0-for-6) while the penalty kill surrendered three tallies for the second time this year. J.P. Cote had his scoring streak snapped at six games and Desjardins dropped to 3-5-1 on the year.


Crunch at Binghamton-Wednesday, 7:05 p.m. (ESPN Radio 97.7 FM & 1200 AM, Syracuse; 100.1 & 1440 AM, Oswego)

The Crunch and Senators face off for the fifth time this season Wednesday at Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena. Binghamton holds the edge in the season series, having won three of the four games so far. Syracuse's lone victory against the Senators was Oct. 19 in Binghamton.

Binghamton (13-5-0-0) has won eight of its last ten and is tied for first place in the East Division with 26 points. Leading scorers for the Sens are Mike Hoffman with 24 points (10g, 14a) and Stephane Da Costa who has 19 points (6g, 13a) in 15 games. In net Nathan Lawson has played in 11 games posting an 8-2-0 record with a 2.51 goals-against average and a .928 save percentage. In eight games Andrew Hammond is 5-3-0 with a 3.34 goals-against average and a .896 save percentage.

Crunch vs. St. John's-Friday, 7 p.m. (KRock 100.9 & 106.5 FM)

Syracuse and St. John's meet for the first time since the Crunch won the Mary Brown's Cup in the preseason. The Crunch won two of the three games during that series and clinched the Mary Brown's Cup for the second straight year. It will be the first of four meetings between the two teams this season. St. John's (9-8-1-2) is second in the Atlantic Division, and seventh in the Eastern Conference with 21 points.

Last season the Crunch won three of four regular season meetings. Goaltender Riku Helenius appeared in all four games, starting three. Among active Crunch players, Brett Connolly Syracuse with two points (1g, 1a) in the series.

Eric O'Dell (10g, 10a) and Kael Mouillierat (4g, 12a) lead the Ice Caps this season. O'Dell ranks 12th in AHL scoring. In net Eddie Pasquale has appeared in 16 games with a record of 8-7-1. He has posted a 2.37 goals-against average and a .921 save percentage.

Crunch at Adirondack-Saturday, 7p.m. (KRock 100.9 & 106.5 FM)

The Crunch and Phantoms face off for this first of six meetings this season. Last season the two teams played eight times with each team winning four. Only one of Adirondack's victories came in regulation last season.

Adirondack (7-8-0-2) is in 13th in the Eastern Conference and fourth in the Northeastern Division with 16 points. The Phantoms lost their last four games after having a six-game win streak snapped by the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Nov. 10.

Bruno Gervais (3g, 7a) and Jason Akeson (2g, 8a) lead the Phantom offense. Rob Bordson and Chris VandeVelde each have five goals for the Phantoms.

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