“The young guys are playing checkers. I’m out there playing chess.”
Welcome to preseason hockey 2016! The Charlotte Checkers are in town–AHL affiliate of the Carolina Hurricanes. A quick perusal of their roster and you may recognize head coach Ulf Samuelsson and goalie Michael Leighton.
A pre-season Checkers roster can be found HERE.
A pre-season Phantoms roster can be found HERE.
G Anthony Stolarz was with the Flyers last night for the preseason game in New York, as Steve Mason was out to attend the birth of his child. Michal Neuvirth played in goal as the Flyers downed the Rangers 4-2 behind goals from Streit, Couturier, Voracek, and Konecny. Marty Ouellette is in town to back up Alex Lyon, while the veteran Mark Dekanich remains with Reading. F Cole Bardreau is still recovering from surgery and a mouth injury suffered in practice this week, and is not expected to play tonight or tomorrow. He is said to be aiming for the opener next Saturday.
While we await further roster moves by the Flyers, it was noted yesterday that D Brandon Manning is “week to week” with and upper body injury, and F Scott Laughton is out 3-4 weeks with a lower body injury. GM Ron Hextall has said he doesn’t like having players start the season on IR, but he may have little choice. He’s also up against the cap pretty good right now, which may also play in to the roster decisions pending prior to Tuesday. I don’t even want to hazard a guess right now, but what I’m hoping for is that Weal gets sent, passes through waivers, and helps us score more goals. D Andrew MacDonald has reportedly been playing well, and looks to be staying on board with the Flyers at this juncture. But, we’ll see.
Kram’s suggested lines for Phantoms:
23 Leier – 21 Miele – 22 Conner
18 Martel – 7 Zengerle – 24 Straka
12 Goulbourne – 37 Sundher – 16 Aube-Kubel
10 Carey – 19 Fazleev – 13 McDonald
8 O’Neill – 6 Sanheim
43 Brennan – 3 Morin
4 Hagg – 44 Willcox
34 Lyon (30 Ouellette)
The Royals are also in pre-season action tonight in Reading. Admission is free in Reading so long as you show up with some canned goods in tow to donate.
Puck Drop: 7:05 PM
Doors: 6:00 PM
Tickets and Parking: Good seats are still available on both the primary and secondary markets. No new parking news to report.
Broadcast Information: Radio 1470-AM with pregame starting at 6:20; TV on SECTV-2 with pregame starting at 6:30PM LIVE from Chickie’s and Pete’s
Media Kit: (not available for preseason)
Promotion: None. Full season ticket holders remember to pick up your ticket books at the team tables on the concourse.
Pre-Game: Tonight’s and tomorrows games come as Allentown Cocktail Week wraps up. Here are some events you might consider tonight before and after the game:
- Dime Bar: Happy Hour with a twist: County Seat Distilling 5:30PM-8:00PM
- Dime Restaurant: Tequila Pairing Dinner 6PM-9PM (Five courses for $50+; 1800, Milagro, Dobel )
- Hamilton: Bluecoat Distilling Happy Hour and Pre-Game: 4:30PM-11:00PM
- Hamilton: Live music 9PM-12PM post-game
- ROAR: Happy Hour food and drink specials: 5PM-7PM
- Bell Hall: “Bell Bottoms at Bell” 8PM-11PM (70s party; post-game?)
- HUSH: Reggae Afterparty 11PM-2AM
What To Watch
- Watch to see if they have those new metal detectors in yet.
- Watch the lines–will be interesting and they’ll probably try to get some other guys involved in tomorrow’s game–anybody you don’t see tonight
- Watch the rookie netminder Lyon. I’ve heard only good things; it will be nice to see him in live action.
- Watch the power play. What formation do they use? Who’s up top? (Background information HERE)
- Which defenders are out there on the PK?
- See if 99Bottles is open in the former Crust location. (I don’t think so, but it’s worth looking.)
We’re right back at it tomorrow, with more cocktail week happenings and a pre-season rematch with the Checkers, who will stay in town with us tonight. Official opening night is a week from tomorrow, with the new Springfield franchise in town.
See you at the arena,