Hartford Wolf Pack Weekly: Offense heating up

The Hartford Wolf Pack return home Christmas week for two home games before going on their holiday break.

Hartford completed their three game trip last week visiting Milwaukee, Grand Rapids, and Rockford securing four out of a possible six points. The Wolf Pack are now a three game winning streak and have won their last four of five prior to Saturday’s loss against the IceHogs (3-2). The team is beginning to find consistency and the offensive woes have improved in recent weeks.

In the last four games, the club registered 16 goals. The defensive aspect remains intact and solid, along with goaltending.

Wolf Pack Weekly

hartford wolf pack
Wolf Pack Weekly (Kelly Shea / Hartford Wolf Pack)

Could this be a turning point of the season?

Entering this week, the Wolf Pack 9-11-1-4 for 23 points. That ranks the group eighth (last) in the Atlantic Division. However, Hartford is two points away from seventh place Springfield and four points away from a playoff spot in the division.

In fact, Hartford is aiming to take a spot from the Charlotte Checkers or Lehigh Valley Phantoms as both clubs are ahead of Hartford by four points. The recent struggles from both clubs bode well for the Wolf Pack, who are on the rise.

Zooming the picture out, Hartford is ranked 15th (last) in the Eastern Conference.

Offensive Explosion: Turner Elson

Veteran Turner Elson is beginning to get on the scoresheet nightly after a quiet start to the season. The 30 year old forward leads the club in points with 13. In 25 outings, Elson has five goals and eight assists. He is on a four game point streak (three goals, one assist) and has points in the last five of seven.

Elson has found his spark, generating high quality opportunities for the club. If he is not shooting, then he is helping to set up sequences on offense. In addition, he is on a line with Ryan Carpenter and Austin Rueschoff, which was particularly strong on the road trip.

Elson was brought in over the summer to bolster Hartford’s offensive. The dividends are paying off with the right lines. Elson is producing, along with the rest of the line.

Ryan Carpenter’s Multiple Point Game

The 31 year old forward is adjusting to his role in Hartford well. Carpenter secured his first two goals and assist last Friday against the Griffins. In his fourth game with the Wolf Pack, Carpenter had an impressive outing. The veteran will be able to bring additional support for Hartford’s offensive firepower.

Prior to his first points of the season, Carpenter had a few good looks and nice quality chances on net. Once he settled, the forward will be reliable for production, along with the transition game.

While the veteran was held off the scoresheet Saturday, he still had a solid outing along with the rest of the club. Since Carpenter joined Hartford, the club has turned around which is good to see. Perhaps he was the spark the Wolf Pack needed.

Tanner Fritz Finds Consistency

The 31 year forward had a struggling start offensively. However in recent weeks, Fritz has found himself on the scoresheet and is beginning to be another reliable veteran in the forward group.

Fritz netted one goal and four assists in back to back games on December 10th and 14th. He has points in four of his last eight games (one goal, six assists).

In addition, Fritz is a good player to have to mentor the Rangers prospects, especially the forward group as Hartford’s captain Jonny Brodzinski is playing well for the big club.

Wolf Pack One Timers

  • Will Cuylle had a great night on December 14th against the Admirals. He recorded one goal, one assist, and the shootout winner for Hartford.
  • Matthew Robertson has points in back to back games. The defenseman has one goal and two assists.
  • Lauri Pajuniemi snapped his nine game point drought on December 16th with a goal.
  • Gustav Rydahl has points in back to back games with one goal and one assist.

Wolf Pack Upcoming Games

Hartford will have two games before the holiday break. After the break, the club will resume the season on December 27th on the road. Hartford will see Bridgeport twice and Springfield three times in the next two weeks.

Thursday, December 22nd vs Springfield Thunderbirds (St. Louis) at 7pm, XL Center

  • This is the third of 12 meetings in the season series. Hartford is 1-1 against the Thunderbirds thus far. Hartford will face Springfield on the road on December 28th, for the fourth meeting. The fifth meeting will be in Hartford on December 31st.
  • Entering the week, the Thunderbirds are 10-12-1-4 for 25 points. That ranks the club seventh in the Atlantic Division and 11th in the Eastern Conference. Springfield dropped their last two outings and are 2-3 in the last five games. They are 3-5-1-1 in the last ten.
  • Experienced forward Matthew Highmore leads Springfield in points with 26. In 27 games, Highmore collected six goals and 20 assists. He is ranked 20th in the league for points. Martin Frk is second on the team for points with 20. He has five goals and 15 assists in 22 games.
  • Listen – Mixlr. Watch – AHLTV.

Friday, December 23rd vs Bridgeport Islanders (New York) at 5pm, XL Center

  • This is the fourth of 12 meetings in the season series. Hartford is 0-3 against Bridgeport thus far. The fifth meeting will be in Bridgeport on December 27th.
  • Entering the week, the Islanders are 14-8-5 for 33 points. That ranks the group third in the Atlantic Division and fourth in the Eastern Conference. The Islanders are on a three game skid (0-2-1) and are 1-4 in the last five outings. In the last ten, Bridgeport is 4-5-1.
  • Veteran Chris Terry leads Bridgeport in points with 24. In 22 games, Terry has six goals and 18 assists. Andy Andreoff is second in the group with 22. He has 14 goals and eight assists in 27 games.
  • Listen – Mixlr. Watch – AHLTV.

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