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Admirals Stat-urday: Anaheim Cast Aways Making Their Mark

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The reinforcements from the NHL continue to energize the Admirals, who are now 3-2 in their last five games.

William Karlsson in his first game with the 14-15 Admirals 11/26/2014 at Norfolk Scope
William Karlsson in his first game with the 14-15 Admirals 11/26/2014 at Norfolk Scope
Courtesy John Wright/Norfolk Admirals

1 Norfolk is now 4-2 when scoring first.

2 Nic Kerdiles has three goals in his last two games, including two huge goals scored in the final 2:08 of the third period that brought the Admirals out of a 2-0 deficit and forced overtime.  Kerdiles is second among rookies in shots on goal with 62, and currently leads the Admirals' active roster in scoring with 13 points (6G, 7A).

3 William Karlsson has chipped in three points (2G, 1A) over the past week, and now has four points (2G, 2A) in five games since Anaheim reassigned him to the Admirals.

4 Rickard Rakell has already put up four points (1G, 3A) in two games since being assigned to Norfolk, including the game-winner in overtime Tuesday against the Charlotte Checkers (Carolina Hurricanes), his first goal of the season with the Admirals. Rakell also had the primary assists on Nic Kerdiles' two goals against Charlotte.  [Ed. Note:  And he's been called up due to Corey Perry's injury. -CK]

5 The Admirals rank third in the AHL in scoring short-handed goals with five (Chris Wagner-2, Joseph Cramarossa-1, Max Friberg-1, John Kurtz-1).

6 Norfolk is now 3-0 in overtime, accounting for six of their 18 total points.  The Admirals have not gone to a shoot-out yet this season.

7 The Admirals bright spot continues to be the penalty kill, ranked seventh in the AHL.  Norfolk has an 85.3 percent kill rate, allowing only 14 goals in 95 short-handed attempts through 22 games.

8 Chris Wagner assisted on both of Nic Kerdiles' third period goals that tied the game in Charlotte Tuesday and forced overtime.  Wagner, recently recalled to Anaheim, has 13 points in 14 games played and leads the Admirals in goals with eight.

9 Yann Danis went 1-2 this week, losing Saturday to the Lehigh Valley Phantoms (Philadelphia Flyers), winning Tuesday against the Charlotte Checkers (Carolina Hurricanes) and finally losing last night to the Springfield Falcons (Columbus Blue Jackets).  Danis finished up November with a 2.87GAA and a .912SP in seven games.

10 Brendan Bell picked up his tenth assist of the season last night against Springfield.  Bell ranks third in scoring among active Norfolk players with 11 points (1G, 10A).

--Emerson Etem is set to miss his fourth straight game.  I called it the mumps last weekend, mostly in jest, but pretty much believing it to be the truth.  The Ducks confirmed it last night (a week later), and I have to wonder why it took so long to announce it.  Anaheim locker room + "illness"  = mumps.  Is it really a secret anymore?  Can't the same be said for the Minnesota Wild's locker room too?  Etem skated yesterday, so it appears he's on the back-end of the illness.  I'm guessing Norfolk will give him the full week to recover and we'll see him draw back in the line-up this Friday at Scope.

--Anaheim and the Florida Panthers traded defensemen, with Jesse Blacker and a future conditional draft pick going to Florida in exchange for defenseman Colby Robak.  I know the Ducks are hurting on defense, especially with recently acquired Eric Brewer suffering a broken foot, however this looks to me like a one for one swap of defensemen that are most likely both going to be relegated to the AHL this season.  Despite reports to the contrary, Bob Murray got a player that couldn't crack the Panthers' line-up.  That doesn't exactly scream "good deal" to me.

--According to TSN's Pierre LeBrun, the expectation is that John Gibson, Anaheim's #2 behind Andersen at the beginning of the season, would be assigned to Norfolk and spend most of the season there once he returns from injury.  This news is based on the premise that the Ducks' will sign Ilya Bryzgalov (I don't see how they couldn't) who would remain in Anaheim to back-up Andersen.  If it truly plays out this way, and Bruce Boudreau's throw-aways are allowed to stay in Norfolk, the Admirals have a chance of turning things around.  They are 15 points behind first place Springfield in the Eastern Conference and ten points behind the Wilkes Barre-Scranton Penguins (Pittsburgh Penguins) in the East Division.  Big hill to climb for sure, but with Gibson between the pipes, anything is possible.

What's unfortunate in this situation is that Yann Danis will eventually be the odd man out.  If Gibson makes it back before Jason LaBarbera returns, the duo in Norfolk will be Gibson and Danis.  Once LaBarbera is back though, he'll surely be reassigned to Norfolk, and the Admirals will say thanks to Danis.  As far as I'm concerned, Danis has earned the net.  He's solid, steady, and gave the Admirals' a chance to win every night.  I hope that once the time comes, he can find a spot on another team.

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