Amerks Lack of Effort Could Be the Issue

The Rochester Americans were defeated by the final score of 2-1 at Blue Cross Arena on Wednesday night against the Rockford IceHogs, one of the top teams in the league.  The Amerks lone goal was scored with 50 seconds left in the game, too little too late.

The penalty kill was the shining moment of the game, they held the ‘Hogs scoreless on all five power play opportunities.  The IceHogs had a five minute power play and were only able to get off one shot on net.  They also killed off a 5 on 3.  Unfortunately the power play for the Amerks was 0 for 5, one area that has been aweful all season.

Here’s a quote from head coach Benoit Groulx at the end of his 65 second post game press conference:

“What I didn’t like was we didn’t play as a team. We lost this game because we had three-quarters of the team showing up and the other quarter were passengers.  And that pissed me off.  Thank you.”

That was pretty much it.  This is not the first game he has shared comments like this.

The locker room cleared out pretty quick, whatever he said in that locker room was probably short and not so nice.

Tyler Plante has not won a game this season in the AHL, and has been playing with the Dayton Bombers of the ECHL for the past couple of months.

The IceHogs are tied for fourth in the Western Conference, The Amerks are dead last in the league.

Many thought this game could have been much worst, but somehow it wasn’t a blow out.  They could have won this game, but as Groulx’s comments say, the whole team failed to show up.

What if the whole team did show up?  This is a team that is without their top scorer in Janis Sprukts.  They’re also playing without Jacob Micflikier and Kenndal McArdle, two of the faster skating players on the team.

This Rochester Americans team has beat three of the best teams in the league – Providence Bruins, Manitoba Moose, and the Grand Rapids Griffins.  Those wins all came with the #2 goalie in the league Mike Brodeur in net for them.

“Tyler kept us in the game,” Groulx stated.

A backup goalie from the ECHL gets called up, get’s the start, and keeps the team in the game against one of the better and higher scoring teams in the league.  I know I said it above, but had to be said again.

“What i dont like tonight is that we did not play as a team and this is unaccetpable at this point of the year,” Benoit Groulx also stated.

Based on the coaches comments tonight, I’m starting to ponder the idea that maybe the issue is not the lack of talent that was put together by the Florida Panthers this season, but the lack of chemistry amongst the talent.

The Rochester Americans have shown they can compete with the top teams in the league and play 60+ minutes against them, why they can’t do it consistently is where the chemisty possibly comes into play.

The Amerks next game is on Saturday afternoon at 2:05pm against the Binghamton Senators, it’s also $1 hot dog day as well.  They’re home on Sunday as well at 6:05pm against the San Antonio Rampage.  Here’s hoping for a better weekend!