1) You never know the result of a trade until a few weeks after the move but it’s clear that the Checkers won on the Philippe Cornet trade for Adam Brace. Cornet has 13 points and two game-winning goals since coming over from San Antonio (including this past Saturday against his old team in Oklahoma City) while Adam Brace hasn’t returned to the AHL since he left Charlotte.
2) The Florida Panthers asked the County of Broward to help pick up around $70 million in expenses currently being paid by the Panthers for operation of the BB&T Center over the next 14 years in a restructured lease deal. The team loses over $20 million each year and says the parameters of its old deal with the county are unsustainable. Stop me if you’ve heard this story before.
3) If Paul Maurice comes into the Jets organization and suddenly the team starts playing better, in my opinion, that’s more an indictment against the players for lack of success than on former coach Claude Noel.
4) I helped out fellow AHL broadcaster and voice of the Utica Comets, Brendan Burke, this past week by calling the Utica vs. Oklahoma City game on Thursday. I’ve been broadcasting games for a long time but this was the most difficult one of my career. Both teams were the other team. Very strange. Utica fans were very supportive on Twitter and it ended up being a lot of fun. I can’t remember the last time I was nervous before a game but the butterflies were going before that one.
5) Note to Keegan Lowe and Kale Kessey: We get it. You hate each other. But even Tyson vs. Holyfield didn’t have that many rematches. Part 1 | Part 2
6) I saw a study that said caffeine may help boost long-term memory. I knew there was a reason Checkers assistant coach Geordie Kinnear remembers every single goal he ever scored.
7) When Travis Morin was in the Washington Capitals system, they rarely ever called him up to Hershey from South Carolina. They said he couldn’t skate well enough and wasn’t good enough defensively. Today, he leads the AHL in scoring with 50 points in 32 games for the Texas Stars. I have the same opinion now as I did back in the ECHL regarding Morin; he is one heck of a hockey player and Washington was wrong. The Checkers have to deal with Morin and Texas again this weekend.
8) Just throwing this out there, but if the Detroit Red Wings and the Toronto Maple Leafs don’t make the playoffs this season, my prediction is that Randy Carlyle is fired and Mike Babcock becomes the next coach of the Leafs.
9) I think the most underrated signing of the offseason was defenseman Matt Corrente. He is quietly +7 in his last seven games and continues to find a way to put pucks on net which has been a problem for the defense all year. A positive influence on and off the ice and is playing the best hockey yet of the season when it matters most.
10) Three games in three nights, folks. If you’re not going to the games, join us on ESPN 730 AM and online. Paul, Jigs and maybe even Wilky will all be taking part in this weekend’s broadcasts. I tried to book Carrot Top but he’s unavailable.