Justin A. Cohn

About Ice Chips

  • Justin A. Cohn, pro sports coordinator for The Journal Gazette, has been covering the Fort Wayne Komets since 1997. His reporting includes game stories from home and away, features about the players and personalities associated with the Komets, plus coverage of issues affecting hockey at all levels. A native of Bloomfield Hills, Mich., Cohn graduated from Emory University in Atlanta. He can be reached at 260-461-8429 or by email at [email protected].

Komets Korner

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January 17, 2008



best fighter in IHL...for once thats actually a tough question cause no one really pops out like years past...
my picks:


if henley had played enough he would definitley be on there.

wheres big snake, macintyre, tidball, mirasty to thicken up this list a little

Hit Somebody!!!

Jorde? Oh you said best fighter. I thought it said most feared. Or laziest?

Jerad Shaw

Great question

1. Darren McCarty!
2. Legault (2 Ko's)
3. Reichlicz
4. Ewasko (size)
5. Snowball

I am sorry, McCarty is the guy you made the one fight rule on your post. That rule won't be available after tomorrow night. I don't mean to call you out Justin, but if you are going to pool the best fighters in the league, McCarty is top. Sorry, but that is the truth of the matter. I love Henley, but he hasn't battled anyone yet. Its Darren until Cohney drops me with a right cross. That could happen sooner rather then later!! :)

Jerad Shaw

I hope everyone saw Nash's goal tonight. WOW!!! Simply WOW

Justin Cohn

Hey, I have no problem with McCarty being on there. I hadn't really considered it but, yeah, he's No. 1 easy on that list. But will he still be there when I make use of it?


1.Chris Kovalcik
2.Joel Rechlicz
3.Olivier Legault
4.Robert Snowball
5.Kevin Bertram
6.Kris Mallette


2008 IHL Best Fighters:

1.Chris Kovalcik
2.Joel Rechlicz
3.Olivier Legault/Robert Snowball
5.Kevin Bertram
6.Kris Mallette
7.Mitch Woods
8.Jeff Ewasko
10. Tie between several players


That's a tough question J.C. IN most fights i've seen this year i've seen it go alot of different ways. alot of times it just depends who gets the first punch or who ties up better with a hand free...like woody's left :) Bertram is good at getting that first punch thrown and can man handle alot of guys with muscle, even EWWWasko. Ewasko has size and uses it, but i really believe that bum shouldn't be at the top lol. I would say willis, even tho he has looked awful lazy this year when it comes to fighting... maybe not. idk. and snoooowbaaalll. i love to hate this guy. He is one of the best fighters. he can for sure throw em.
8.segal...he's just crazy. he'll go with anyone.

This is a tough one. Im sure i will change my opinion several times today thinkin about it haha.

Jerad Shaw

Make use of it?? Hmmmm I think I like where this is heading!! If you need anymore analysis, just let me know!!!

After looking at other peoples choices, I would say that Kovalcik would be my number 4 instead of Ewasko. I can't believe my buddy Van Druden isn't on this list.


1. Joel Rechlicz (When he's not in Albany)
2. Chris Kovalcik (Will be lower after tonight)
3. Olivier Legault
4. Mitch Woods
5. Chris Gehrke (When he does)



1. Henley
2. Rechlitz
3. Legault
4. Snowball
5. Kovalcik
6. Gehrke
7. Bertram
8. Woods
9. Willis
10 Ewasko
11 Sam Miller


As far as player going overseas, I think that its sad that they leave their teams high and dry. I understand the money is a major factor, but what ever happened to commitment? No wonder the divorce rate is so high... lol.

If they are scared to play in the IHL, then by all means, lets help them pack.


i hope the "rule" is still in place that if they leave for Europe they can't sign in the IHL for a Period of time.


Legault - he has 2 KO's i've never seen that before.

Henley - need i say more

Willis - Mini Me is Psycho, anytime, anywhere, anyone.

Woods - the kid has no fear and is kinda like the energizer bunny, he just keeps going and going and going.....


Everyone can cross off Gehrke he was waived yesterday


Another poll that would be good
-The biggest Trash Talker- and I mean on the ice not on here...haha

Jerad Shaw

Kzoo losing Ibrer is going to hurt them big time. He is by far the best scoring defenseman in the league.

Justin Cohn

Unless we're going to get players in on that poll, it probably wouldn't been too accurate. :)

The Fan

1. Kovalcik
2. Little
3. Legault
4. Henley
5. Rechlitz

(Willis, Woods, Snowball, Bertram, Ewasko...) Colin Chaulk is in my top 10 for sure. He does not go often but, everytime that he has it's been like a runaway chainsaw. I'm sure there are a few more out there that would suprise us. I would still like to see Matt Reynolds(John Cusack look alike) throw them down.

It's a shame about K-zoo losing two of their better players. It seems that Europe is the place to be. I did a little research and found that nearly all of the top three players for the AHL and UHL's 2006 team rosters are currently playing in Europe.

Can't wait for tonight's game. NOTE TO EVERYONE: Don't forget to get there early. The parking lot is going to be hell.



I agree, chaulk can surely throw em!!!This little poll has got my mind runnin. been thinkin about it all day. And about all these players leaving for that Europe, alot of them end up wanting to come back and the style of play is so different that most, in my eys, wont like it. all well. anyways... go K's. see yall tonight.

kyle hunt

The toughest is always going to be the quietist, and thats why you will never know it............until it hits you!


Hey Justin, I keep going to the page "I hope Kalamazoo is going to sue for pink-eye infringement" but it gives me no page found. Is it the right address?

Love when Chaulk throws down. Nothing was better seeing him go after K-zoo.


I went to the link and got no page found also. Fighters missing from the list...for now I don't think Hukalo has thrown it down yet (not sure)but when he fights he is like Chaulk and is very good at it. Love Willis...my favorite player outside of the Komets-He fought Big Snake, Littlejohn-Elmira, Chaz JOhnson and a lot of big guys and recently last Friday a guy that put him on IR or at least made him a scratch. Marty Magers the goalie could get honarable mention. Also does anyone know if Chad Alban has actually played in IHL this year yet or not? He was very good and I knew he was on Flints roster...not sure. GO KOMETS! See you tonight.

Justin Cohn

Try it now -- they moved the page -- or use this: http://hamptonroads.com/2008/01/pink-ice-can%E2%80%99t-help-admirals-victory


What is wrong with the parking tonight?


Arena Cross will be starting at the same time as the Komet game, only in the expo, so parking will be tight and slow!!! I bet they will also get out at the same time too, so that will be great as well!!!

Patrick Stelte


I read your link to the story about Sam Ftorek and Corey Laylin leaving in the middle of the season for Euro contracts. This quote from the article made me think, "It’s cutthroat. There are a lot of headhunters in Europe. If their team’s not doing well over there, they want to go after the best players in every league. Sammy was on fire, and people noticed it". Also, “If you can make 25 grand in two months, you take it, and that’s what these guys are being offered".

If the Komets have the best team and some of the best players, why are they not losing players to European headhunters in the middle of the season? Komet players must be approached. Mike Smith is the only player in recent memory to leave for Europe in the middle of the season.

What are the factors that keep them in Fort Wayne? Should I be naive to believe it is because Fort Wayne is such a great place to play? $25,000 for two months of work far exceeds IHL salaries. I believe in the UHL, the league penalized players leaving in the middle of contracts by baning them from the league for a year after their European contract ended. Does such a restriction apply in the new IHL? Furthermore, I thought Robin Bouchard left in the middle of a Muskegon contract to play in Europe last year. Yet this year, he is back with Muskegon.

I am not trying to stir the pot, but often what is not said and discussed often drives the bus.

The Fan

TGP, There is a second large event going on at the EXPO (AMA Arenacross Races). A couple weeks ago they scheduled the Midget Series Races on the night of a Komet game. I arrived at the coliseum at my regular time and had to park on the south side of the Wizards stadium by the river. Something tells me that the AMA event will draw even more.

Jerad Shaw

Last year, they had to delay the start of the hockey game cause 50% of the crowd was trying to get into the parking lot. It will be packed tonight. Get there early and go eat dinner in the lounge.


IS there still plenty of tickets for the Komets game?

The Fan

Good info Patrick. I did not know what kinda money they were being offered. I'm sure in some cases it could be more.

I have tried to find the bylaws of the IHL to see if there is a probation period that must be served before a player could resume play. I had no luck. In order for such a penalty to be affective I would think that ALL minor league teams would adopt this in order to protect their investments.

A question deeper into the subject: If a player bails out for Europe and later returns to the States, Who has the rights to the player and for how long? I know in the past, players have resumed State side play but have come back to a different league. This is all fine. It just bothers me when they do it to avoid a loosing team, especially when it's the teams only hope.


why does the coliseum not make vendors and other vehicles that are not fans park in the back of the parking lot? why do they have to block off so many spots for people that will be parked there for a couple days? It'd be easier and better for us fans if they would make them drop off their stuff and park at the rear of the parking lot. Can't wait for the stadium to be demolished, maybe then they will make vendors park there. Probably not though......

Charlie in Rochester Hills, MI

Amazed Komet Fan: Be careful about ripping the level of play in the IHL, they love their "pond hockey" down there. I was insulted big time when I did. I am also an amazed Komet fan in that I am amazed they play in a league like this. Yes, I still read the Journal Gazette everyday on line, hoping to someday see the headline "KOMETS JOIN AMERICAN HOCKEY LEAGUE AS FARM CLUB OF DETROIT RED WINGS". Ok, let the insults fly. As Mickey Redmond says, "Katie bar the door", and 'Ain't no place for a nervous person". I love it! I just hope Justin does not bar me for the way I rile you folks up!


Sorry charlie, but i would rather the ks be the top minor league team for the blackhawks.The wings defensive non physical style of play is boring!

Charlie in Rochester Hills, MI

Gerry, that would be fine. I like the Blackhawks also, and Chicago is a Great city. You are right, the Wings are a non-physical team, however, 3 Stanly Cups since 1997 has been anything but boring! Does that mean you would like to see the K's be a farm club or were you trying to touch a nerve by ripping the Red Wings? Besides, my favorite hockey team is the Komets, that's why it pains me to see them in this league. I think you will see some teams drop out of the IHL and the K's will be forced to move to another league or close up shop. I doubt closing up shop is an option and I would be suprised if there was a lower level of professional hockey than the IHL. When I lived in Fort Wayne the K's were in the old IHL drawing around 5000 per game with better hockey, now they draw around 7000 per game with a lower quality product. I don't buy the line that fans won't pay for better hockey, I have been to few K's games here in Michigan this season and one in Fort Wayne. I paid more in Fort Wayne than in Flint, Muskegon, and Port Huron. I have not been to K-zoo this season. I will stop to see the K's if I'm in the area working that day, but I no longer make a K's game the reason for a road trip, like I did in the old IHL days. I'm not a hockey snob, just a longtime Komets fan that is sad to see my interest in them waning.


Seriously Charlie, 2 points:

1.) Grand Rapids is the boring team in any hockey league, why we would want to watch that is beyond me.

2.) The Frankes are currently STILL drawing 7,500+ for "pond hockey"......

3.) and most important DETROIT SUX!!


Should be 3 points, added the 3rd on the fly.

Charlie in Rochester Hills, MI

Detroit as a city is less than desirable, as a sports city it's really one of the best, excluding the Lions of course. Not sure how Grand Rapids got in the discussion, but you are right, Grand Rapids is kind of boring. Junior, the only point of the 3 you make that has anything to do with my comments was #2, not sure what #1 and #3 have to do with anything? And your #2 point is one of the main reasons I think the K's belong in a better league. I knew the mud would start flying!

kyle hunt

Jeez, talking favorite NHL teams is like listening or talking religion.

Jerad Shaw

After Bertram getting the boot for a facemasking,

" I thought they closed the zoo for the winter. Must have been where they found this guy."

- Bob Chase in regards to Hawthorne-


You knew it was coming...


Grand Rapids is Det. affiliate and I don't think ftw. will get it from them if we would ever go to the ahl. nice arena to see a game though.


Hawthorne = no flow.


it has been so nice not seeinf Hawthorne for several weeks till tonight! he has taken the flow from the game yet again. when is the IHL going to wake the hell up and get some decent refs that will allow 5 on 5 hockey and not completely blow? Hawthorne has got to be the worst ref around! It is not even enjoyable coming to a game when he is here. No flow!!!! same old grap. IHL please give this Jask&$$ his walking papers!!!!!


No flow = boring circus when everybody payed to see a hockey game.

kyle hunt

No such thing as a facemask, HA, must think its a football game, what a ref!


1-1 here we go. grab the foil...

kyle hunt

Guess there is such a thing as a facemask, MY BAD.

Jerad Shaw

From what Chaser said it was a facewash. Van Druden doesn't have a facemask to grab onto.

kyle hunt

Komets win!


One question, what the heck is a "5 Min facemask?"

The Fan

Hawthorne has got to go... I know it won't happen. So let's make sure that it's free ice scraper, puck, or lawn darts night next time we are cursed with his presence. He is so one sided it makes me wanna puke.

Some of you will hate this others will think it's cute. My 60 year old mother attended her first game of the season tonight. She had two questions that made me laugh. She first she asked, "Why don't they hit on the boards anymore?" Later she asked, "Does it seem like they are going in slow motion". I had to throw this out there because I know it has been the subject of many heated debates.

I did state that a lot of it was do to fear of being called for boarding or something crazy like facemasking.... I also told her that the game is not what it used to be.

Komets win! Flint Goes down. I think we are 9 points up.

Does anyone know the status of Nick Boucher? We need him healthy so we can bring Legault back without having to put another forward or defenceman down.

In with the stinky elephants... Can't wait to smell um when we come back... Puke!


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