Admirals Stat-urday: Santa Gives the Gift of Winning

Harry How

Five wins, 11 points and one game away from .500. Santa has made Admirals players and fans very happy this December.

1 - In a win against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (New York Islanders) last Saturday, every Norfolk skater recorded at least one shot on goal.

2 - The Admirals scored two power play goals Friday night against the Albany Devils (New Jersey Devils). It was just the third game of 26 played this season in which the team has scored on multiple power plays.

3 - Norfolk has the third best defense in December thus far, averaging only two goals against per game.

4 - Devante Smith-Pelly leads the Admirals in goals in the month of December with four goals in eight games after scoring only one goal October through November.

5 - Norfolk has won five games in December (5-2-1-0) and has earned 11 of a possible 16 points. The Admirals had earned 10 of a possible 12 points in October (5-2-0-0) and only four of a possible 24 points in November (2-10-0-0)

6 - The Admirals have lost six times in 15 games when being outshot by their opponent.

7 - Of the 25 skaters to dress for Norfolk this season, only seven players have played in all 26 games. 14 players have dressed for 20 or more games.

8 - Forward Peter Holland leads the Admirals in points in December with nine points in eight games. (2-7-9)

9 - Goalie Igor Bobkov, stopped 96 of 103 shots on goal and has a .932 save percentage, after starting three straight games in as many games played in December.

10 - The Admirals killed off all 10 of Albany's power plays on Friday night. Norfolk is currently ranked seventh in the AHL, having killed 118 of 138 penalties. This includes a stretch of 33 straight kills, which ended last Friday against the Sound Tigers.

-- Early Christmas in December? After being able to squeak out a measly four points in the entire month of November, the Admirals have earned points in five of six games and have amassed nine points of a possible 12.

-- Norfolk's penalty kill remains strong, highlighted by the killing of 2 long 5-on-3 kills Friday night and 0 goals on 10 total infractions.

-- Friday night's game against Albany saw the Admirals make two power play goals stand up for the win after going through game after game without and contribution from the man-advantage.

--Who is Igor Bobkov? The "Big Bobber" has filled in nicely for the injured Frederik Andersen who went out last weekend with an "upper body injury" against Bridgeport. Bob has started the last three games, including two in three nights, earning two wins. Bobkov had been pulled multiple times in November and was relegated to the back-up role when Andersen got hot in the beginning of December. He's stood strong in his three starts, allowing Norfolk skaters to play a bit more aggressive and with confidence in his ability to bail them out. Bobkov was also only 26 seconds shy of his second shut-out of the season Friday night until Devil's forward Matt Anderson scored during a 6-on-5 Albany man-advantage. There's been no word on the return of Frederik Andersen, but if Bobkov continues to play the way he's been the past few games, the Admirals will have a "good" problem on their hands, having two hot
goalies instead of just one.

Follow me on Twitter: @VAPuckhead

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