Wolf Pack Weekly: It’s Tryout Season With The Pack
Six games remain in the 2018-19 season for the Hartford Wolf Pack. The contests are officially meaningless as the Wolf Pack were eliminated on Saturday night from the 2019 Calder Cup Playoffs. The remainder of the season will be shifted toward tryouts.
The group has continual changes to the roster, from trying a few players from Maine or a few college prospects. The off season is approaching quickly for the group as there is just two weeks left. The AHL regular season ends on April 14th.
Entering the final two weeks of the season, Hartford’s record is 28-32-7-3 for 66 points. That puts them last (eighth) in the Atlantic Division, 15th in the Eastern Conference, and 27th in the league.
Playoff Drought Continues
As expected, Hartford became “mathematically” eliminated from playoff contention. The Providence Bruins and Hershey Bears both won games this week along with Hartford continuous losing.
The group has missed playoffs for four seasons straight, and was out in the last six of seven seasons. The franchise made the playoffs for 12 straight seasons prior to their first miss in the 2009-2010 campaign.
The Pack have made the playoffs 15 times in the last 22 years. However, the streak of missing the playoffs indicates the reflect poorly on the Rangers organization and properly stocking the Pack.
Newly Signed Prospect Joins Hartford
As St. Cloud State’s season ended, Rangers prospect Patrick Newell has joined Hartford for the remainder of the season through an ATO. The Rangers signed the forward on March 30th as his contract kicks in next season.
“Newell in 39 games with St. Cloud State notched 21G, 26A for 47 points. The forward has spent the last 4 seasons with St. Cloud, notching a total of 38G, 82A for 120pts in 145 games played.”Milliner06
The prospect will debut on Wednesday night against the Springfield Thunderbirds.
Adam Huska Adjusting To Pro Life
Another prospect who joined from the college ranks is becoming adjusted to the professional ranks. Adam Huska has played better lately, but still have lots of development to go.
In four games with Hartford, the prospect is 1-2-1 with a 4.21 goals against average and a .865 save percentage. Keep in mind that Hartford’s defense is weak and he has not had much help. In addition, two games were against the top tier teams in the league (First place Charlotte, third place Hershey). In his last game against Belleville on Saturday, he had a strong effort and lost in overtime, 3-2. He had a few great saves throughout the contest and had helped to keep the group in the game. Check out this five on three sequence where Adam Huska was playing well and kept the puck out of the net.
I see potential in the goalie prospect and the Rangers organization will need to be patient on developing him. I would expect Adam Huska to be on Hartford’s roster next season. Hopefully he will have a veteran goalie to help him, which would be ideal.
Check out the latest roster moves here:
- Patrick Newell joins Hartford through an ATO, effective April 1st.
- Josh Wesley joins Maine as he was re-assigned by Carolina (His rights is still owned by the Hurricanes but Hartford has him with a player swap). He headed to Maine on March 30th.
- Greg Chase was released on his PTO on March 30th and went back to Maine.
ECHL Maine Update
The Maine Mariners are in the hunt to get into the playoffs. The Mariners are three points out from tying with fourth place Brampton Beast. Brampton has three games remaining while Maine has four left. What is interesting to note is that Maine has lost four straight in regulation. That could set them back potentially. The ECHL’s season end on April 7th. We shall see what happens next week.
- Sean Day has points in two straight. He recorded one goal and one assist last weekend.
- Check out these two goals from Saturday’s contest:
Hartford has three games coming up. One on the road, followed by two on home ice. After this weekend, Hartford has three games remaining. A three in three weekend to finish the season.
Wednesday, April 3rd vs Springfield Thunderbirds (Florida) at 7:05pm, Mass Mutual Center
- This is the 10th and final meeting in the season series between the rivals. Hartford is 4-5 against Springfield. In the Mass Mutual Center, Hartford is 1-3.
- Springfield is in 7th in the Atlantic Division with a record of 29-27-9-5 for 72 points. Hartford is behind Springfield by six points.
- The Thunderbirds have points in two straight (1-0-1) and are 4-3-3 in the last ten outings.
- Springfield is still in the playoff hunt, barely. The Pack could play spoiler if the group win in regulation.
Saturday, April 6th vs Utica Comets (Vancouver) at 7pm, XL Center
- This is the final meeting in the four game series against the Comets. Hartford is 2-0-0-1 against Utica this season.
- The last meeting was on March 16th in Utica as Hartford won 5-3.
- The Comets has fallen since the prior meeting between the two clubs. In the North Division, Utica ranks 6th in the division for a record of 31-31-6-2 for 70 points.
- Utica enters the week losing three straight and are 1-8-1 in the last ten games.
Sunday, April 7th vs Binghamton Devils (New Jersey) at 3pm, XL Center
- This is the final meeting as well against Binghamton. Hartford is 1-1-1 against the Devils this season.
- The last meeting was on March 13th as Hartford won in overtime, 4-3.
- The Devils are 8th in the North Division with a record of 26-38-6 for 58 points. Entering the week, Binghamton is 2-7-1 in the last ten games.