Wishart gave me free chicken wings.
Cedrick Desjardins allowed 5 goals on 29 shots in regulation and overtime before allowing two of five shooters to convert for the shootout loss. He was not good tonight. Lightning fans looking to Cedrick the Entertainer as the answer to the Lightning's goaltending problems probably shouldn't be getting their hopes up. He's very athletic but he also strays off his angle too much. What saved him tonight was the fact Portland's netminder, Leggio, was worse than he was. Norfolk's fifth, free chicken wing awarding, goal was horrificly soft.
POR Mancari, (6) (Adam, Ellis), 1:40
POR Gragnani, (1) (Stuart, Parrish), 8:49
NOR Wright, (2) (Fornataro), 11:15
NOR Simek, (1) (Pouliot, Milam), 14:22
POR Gragnani, (2) (Byron, Adam), 1:30 (PP)
NOR Simek, (2) (Pouliot, Harju), 2:02
NOR Pouliot, (3) (Harju, Fornataro), 4:07 (PP)
POR Schiestel, (1) (Persson, Lagace), 10:27
NOR Wishart, (4), (unassisted) 11:12
POR Adam, (6) (Mancari, Ellis), 14:43
POR- Parrish, Whitmore
Juraj Simek and Marc-Antoine Pouliot were the game's second and third stars. Best player on the ice, in my opinion, was Portland's Marc-Andre Gragnani. He was fantastic in the offensive third and would be damned good in Guy Boucher's system, hint-hint, Steve Yzerman.
I knew we'd score some goal's when Portland's starting goaltender swallowed down the wrong pipe while taking a swig from his water bottle during pre-game warm ups and almost puked right in front of their bench.
Juraj Simek is so money in shootouts everyone in the building knew he was going to score. Loudest ovation of the night was when he was announced to shoot. He's got a Euro-twins power thing working with Harju, too. Paul Szczechura was probably the best Admiral tonight, although it didn't end up in the scoresheet. One word to describe Johan Harju: smooth. Everything about his game is smooth. The puck does not stay on his stick long, whether he's passing it or shooting it, and his decisions are usually pretty good, and he moves with a very effortless stride. He looks like he could stand to gain ten pounds of muscle, but he drips hockey sense.
Overall, the biggest thing the Admirals need to clean up tomorrow night in the rematch against Portland is their play within five feet of their own blueline. Both teams struggled in that department, but Norfolk was particularly poor at getting pucks out and routinely were turning it over right at their own blueline, which is what teams with a deathwish do. They need to clean that up, and they'll get used to switching Jackson out for Vernace as time goes by.
Box score from TheAHL.com.