The term ‘farm’ team has always been a tough one for me to accept. I understand the colloquial nature of it but with the results of farming being, for the most part, getting eaten up I didn’t see the positive outcome.
The Leafs developmental squad takes the ice this weekend for the first time and instead of easing into the schedule, with a good number of young players, first year Head Coach Steve Spott will face a team that won the Calder Cup last season. If you follow life on the farm, it is anything but laid back in the Detroit system. For years and years they have had their prospects spend a good amount of time toting the bale or lifting barges or however you do either of the two. Nothing has changed this season.
The Griffins gave Grand Rapids their first pro hockey championship this past season and not much has changed in the lineup. Have an eye for Jared Coreau who may not get the season start (Peter Mrazek) but as a goaltending prospect out of Northern Michigan, you have to know he was well coached. Also have a look for newcomer Richard Nedomiel , he will be impossible to miss if he is on the ice at six foot five and two thirty one. The home opener should have you in your seats at 3pm on Saturday at the Ricoh.
The Monsters of Lake Erie are the Sunday attraction for a five o’clock tilt and the Colorado affiliate gave a lot of new faces (19) a skate during training camp. How many stick with the team will be revealed Friday night during their home opener versus Abbotsford. The Monsters closed out the season a few degrees shy of boiling over into the playoffs and will be looking to improve on their 80-point 2012-13 season.
Harvesting wins early is often lost in the mad run in April but the Marlies might prefer to dig out a way to feed at the trough in October if they want to be reap the rewards in late spring. Considering all these terms and the fact that putting hay in the barn when you can earns you a playoff spot, farm team seems highly appropriate.