20 Thoughts from the Bears vs Wolf Pack Game

“20 Thoughts” articles occur every time Dylan Coyle works at a professional game. If you are entertained, then we did our job.

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  1. The Hartford Wolf Pack are wearing jerseys very similar to the New York Rangers 2014 Stadium Series Jerseys. I really love how different and unique the Bears’ jerseys are. You would not be able to tell that they are the affiliate of the Washington Capitals, and for that, they are fantastic.
  2. The pregame music in the Giant Center is honestly much better than the PPL Center. No Rocky, but I will allow it. A remix of Diplo’s Revolution is playing right now, and it’s straight fire.
  3. The Bears always have a great crowd. Tonight, I was told that they once again sold out the Giant Center.
  4. Hartford is a team that has been struggling, but only at home. They are 10-9-1-2 on the road this year, which is respectable. But they are 8-16-2-0 at home. That’s awful
  5. Hershey is very strong at home this year at 15-6-5-1. They are 9-7-3-2 on the road.
  6. Quick start in this game. The Bears had a missed opportunity go just by the glove side of Brandon Halverson. They came back again, and a shot almost seemed to be absorbed by the pad of Halverson, but it went through his 5-hole and just hit the post. Going the other way, the Wolf Pack caught the post as well.
  7. Hartford has an issue on the penalty kill. They seem very disorganized, with players losing markings on the ice very frequently. The 27th ranked penalty kill in the league is hitting a 78.2% success rate. Hershey has received many opportunities because the Wolf Pack are shifting way too much to one side.
  8. The best part of any fan cam is the kid who wants to be noticed. One kid stared at the camera with eyes reminiscent of the overly attached girlfriend. Also, I was yelled at by GNGHockey writer Andrew Ostrosky for telling his story on the kiss cam that was in yesterday’s “20 Thoughts” article at the Phantoms – IceCaps game. Peep number 16.
  9. Chris Bourque is as close as you can come to a franchise AHL player. Spending most of his career in the Washington system, he has mostly played in the AHL with the Bears. He earned an assist on a fantastic pass to Christian Djoos late in the 1st period. The idea of the AHLer who is too good for the AHL but not good enough for the NHL is an idea that has stood the test of time in sports with the minors and majors. It’s no man’s land.
  10. If there is any bright spot for the Hartford Wolf Pack this season, it would definitely be Nicklas Jensen. He sniped one top-side by Parker Milner to open up the Hartford score-sheet. Through 43 games, that was his 36th point. This was his second point in as many nights. The 23 year-old is having a breakout year.
  11. GNGHockey social media correspondent Evan Hartman seems very fixated on the vuvuzelas that are going off here in the Giant Center. He said, “They’re hilarious.” I’ve never understood the hate for the vuvuzelas. But, then again, I didn’t go to the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa.
  12. Paul Carey is another fantastic AHL level player that cannot seem to find any footing in the NHL. Lately, he has been on a tear. Scoring tonight on a puck that just got to him on a cross-ice pass, he now has a point in 5 out of the last 6 games.
  13. AHL games are always a great way to see what obscure jerseys people have that cannot be worn in most situations. At this moment I can see jerseys from the Bears, the Wolf Pack, the Capitals, the Charlestown Cheifs from Slapshot, the Boston Bruins, the Philadelphia Flyers, the Chicago Blackhawks, the Detroit Red Wings, the Reading Royals, the 1980 USA hockey team, Team Canada, the Rangers, the Penguins, and the Buffalo Sabres. To name just a few.
  14. Early in the 3rd period, Evan has changed him mind on the vuvuzelas. “They are so annoying” – Evan Hartman.
  15. The Bears really seem to do a good job of cycling when they actually are able to maintain possession of the puck. There were a few times where the Wolf Pack just were not able to take the puck away from them for extended periods of time. If they can hold the puck for a longer amount of time more often, they will have a chance to catch Bridgeport for the 4th spot.
  16. The Wolf Pack were not able to get any sort of lead all night. The Bears move to a fantastic 7-3-0-0 in 2-goal games, while Hartford move to an abysmal 2-9-0-0.
  17. Hershey forward Chris Bourque on his offensive surge as of the last 9 games: “It’s just part of my game just to try to stay consistent and contribute offensively when I can.”
  18. Hershey goalie Parker Milner on the differences between the ECHL and the AHL: “I think the pace definitely ramps up a lot with guys that can put the puck in places that they can’t in the ECHL. It’s just like the NHL to the AHL: it’s faster pace and guys can do more with the puck. It’s definitely an adjustment, but the guys are doing a very good job in front of me.”
  19. Hershey Coach Troy Mann on the match-up with the Sound Tigers tomorrow: “We have Bridgeport 5 more times, so it is not a do-or-die tomorrow… we’d like to get the 2 points and come out feeling good about ourselves going into a real tough weekend next week on Friday.”
  20. Hershey Coach Mann on if there is a learning curve to coaching Milner, who is coming up from the ECHL: “You know, initially, we always get a great push [from the said player]… At the end of the day, as a coach, I just want saves, key saves. The actual dissecting of the play is [goalie coach] Scott Murray’s department in terms of what he can do better on a game-to-game basis.”

Dylan Coyle is a “The Wraparound” writer for Good Night, Good Hockey. You can follow him on Twitter @DylanRCoyle.

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