Hello folks! Welcome to a new weekly feature on our Marlies.ca blog where I attempt to satisfy your hunger for all things Marlies.
The pre-game meal is essential to every hockey player and acts as a fundamental part of game day. It allows them to fuel up before a big game and in this case, we-ll bring it to you in written form.
Who wouldn’t start a big dinner with the best part? It gives us a chance to look back at the week that was for the Marlies and enjoy some of the treats from games already finished.
The Friday night game in Hamilton marked the return of Matt Frattin to the lineup. An injury suffered near the end of Game 5 in the Western Conference Finals was the last any Marlie fan had seen of him. Frattin scored the “icing on the cake” goal vs the Barons, but suffered a knee injury sliding into the net. Those would be the final two goals scored by Frattin in the playoffs, but they also helped earn Toronto a birth in the Calder Cup Finals.
Nearly 6 months later, Frattin would return to the ice for the first time in the 2012-2013 campaign while playing at Copps Coliseum. He would again produce a two goal night in his return, following up six (2) goal games he put together during last season. Number 23 would strike again on Sunday vs Abbotsford, giving him 3 goals in 2 games. After his first weekend, Frattin really took the cake!
As the Marlies prepare to take on Binghamton, Wilkes-Barre Scranton and Hershey this coming week, the trio of games will bring special reunions.
In Binghamton, New York the Marlies entrance brings home one of their most prized native sons: Jerry D’amigo. The opportunity to play pro in your home town is always a special one, as Spencer Abbott found out last Friday in Hamilton, and for D’amigo the moment even improves because of his restaurant tie-in. Red’s Kettle Inn will be host to the entire Marlies team during the American Thanksgiving due to the graciousness of the D’amigo family who runs it. Let me promise you, we will have more than appetizers!
Wilkes-Barre Scranton reunites a pair of french speaking, Canadian hockey players. Former line mates Nicholas Deschamps (Marlies) and Phil Dupuis (Penguins) once helped represent two thirds of Toronto’s French Connection Line during parts of last year’s AHL season. The duo was attached at the hip from the get go, and played very well for Toronto during a large portion of last year.
Finally…Hershey, Pennsylvania or “the house that Keith built.” Aucoin, now sharing the team lead in points with 14, returns to a city he called home for over four years. During his time with the Bears, Aucoin put up 344 regular season points and helped lead the team to a pair of Calder Cup Championships.
The Senators are fisrt on the menu. While losing Jared Cowen to surgery, a different defeceman has stolen the show. Veteran Andre Benoit leads the team in points with seven and stands in front of the dynamic duo in goal: Robin Lehner and Ben Bishop. Binghamton have won 3 straight.
Next on the plate, the Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins. After starting their season with four straight losses, the Penguins have picked up and have won three of their last four games. Leading the Penguins into Hershey before meeting Toronto is Beau Bennett, he leads the team in points with 11.
Finally, a stop in Hershey adds some chocolate to the schedule as the Bears aim to claw out of the basement in the East Division. Having lost 4 of their last 5 at the time of this post, Hershey hopes goal scoring leader Jeff Taffe (5) has some support, as they meet Toronto as the third of three games for them this weekend.
Toronto is still running red hot. Despite losing in Hamilton, the club has won 6 of their last 7 and has scored 34 goals during that time. Nazem Kadri enters as the AHL’s player of the week and Ben Scrivens with 1 goal surrendered over his last two, each wins.
It will be an AHL Live/TSN1050.ca road trip, so please tune in and support your Marlies!
As always stay logged in to Marlies.ca, tuned in to Leafs TV and connected on twitter @HockeyAbbs for all of your Marlies news.
Enjoy a great weekend of hockey and if you are of American roots….a great thanksgiving!