Sorry for the delay, folks, but it took awhile to get the Florida sand and sunscreen out of my keyboard. (Sorry, I had to rub it in.) Sheesh, though, it's cold up here in Fort Wayne.
First off, thanks to columnist Ben Smith for filling in on the blog and in the newspaper while I was gone. Ben's got his own blog, titled And Another thing ..., if you liked what you read from him.
Of course, it figures, Ben gets to cover all the fun stuff while I'm gone -- the return of Pierre-Claude Drouin, a Komets team that went from mediocre to top of the league, Colin Chaulk giving the beatdown to Mike Bickley. Did we forget to mention Chaulk isn't just skilled, he's also one tough cookie?
Went out to practice today and Luciano Aquino rocketed a slapshot at me -- I'll try not to take it personally -- and it was so hard, the boards fell into the stands. Later on, he had his teammates fire slapshots from 180 feet away, and he tipped them out of the air and into the net. Yeah, he's pretty skilled, which explains the team-leading 10 goals and 16 points in 14 games.
Here's the injury update: Konstantin Shafranov is on injured reserve with an upper-respiratory infection and may play Friday when the Komets play host to Port Huron; Bobby Kukulka (shoulder contusion), Guy Dupuis (dislocated rib) and Brent Henley (knee) are all at least 10 days away from playing.
Soon, when the health returns, the Komets will have some tough decisions to make. They have 23 players, two more than they'd normally carry, and eight veterans, one more than they're allowed to use in games.
They're loving Bruce Boudreau, the former Komets coach, so far in Washington, D.C. He has the Capitals off to a 2-0-0 start since taking over for Glen Hanlon. Check this out.
Spotted this in Greg Rajan's blog from at the Corpus Christi Caller-Times:
"(A.J.) Bozoian's turnover that led to New Mexico's last goal did one thing: It had everyone in the rink thinking, WTF? If anyone could figure out what he was trying to do with the puck facing his own goalie, let us know. He rode pine the rest of the night and got multiple chewings-out from McRae on the bench."
-- By Justin A. Cohn, The Journal Gazette