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Press release

Three Bulldogs’ Games to be Broadcast on Sportsnet 360

10/09/2013 11:26 AM
Hamilton Bulldogs’ Press Release

HAMILTON, ONTARIO – The Hamilton Bulldogs announced today that Sportsnet 360 will televise three of the team’s games this winter, two of which will feature the heated rivalry with the Toronto Marlies.tokarskibulldogs

The complete schedule is as follows (all times Eastern):

Sunday, February 9th, 2014, 3:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs)
Sunday, March 9th, 2014, 3:00 p.m. – Lake Erie Monsters (Colorado Avalanche) at Hamilton Bulldogs
Sunday, March 16th, 2014, 3:00 p.m. – Hamilton Bulldogs at Toronto Marlies (Toronto Maple Leafs)

These three games are part of a 10-game schedule of American Hockey League games for Sportsnet 360 this season. AHL games will be broadcast on the station weekly starting with Hamilton and Toronto on February 9th. The games can also be seen on NHL Network in the United States.

In addition to the 10-game regular-season package, Sportsnet ONE will broadcast two-day coverage of the 2014 AHL All-Star Classic between the AHL All-Stars and the Swedish Hockey League’s Farjestad BK, including the Skills Competition and All-Star Game, from St. John’s, Newfoundland on February 11th and 12th.

Hamilton’s next game is its regular season and home opener, scheduled for Friday, October 11th at 7:30 p.m. against the St. John’s IceCaps at Copps Coliseum. The club will host a home opener street party starting at 5:00 p.m., which will feature food provided by Maple Lodge Farms, family entertainment, sponsor vendors and a beer garden serving Molson products. Y108 will also be hosting its Drive Show live at the street party from 2:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

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IceCaps game report

Marlies Sweep Preseason Back-to-Back vs Bulldogs

By Dan Kramer, Senior Writer, All Habs Hockey Magazine

COBOURG, ON – For the second night in a row, the Hamilton Bulldogs got off to a slow start against the Toronto Marlies, but this time they would show considerably less bite the rest of the way, unable to muster anything offensively until the game’s final minutes in ultimately dropping a 2-1 decision.

A Bulldogs roster still lacking many of its more valuable contributors (see the game’s line-up below) was outplayed by the Marlies in the first, and relied on Dustin Tokarski to keep it scoreless early. Tokarski looked increasingly human as the period wore on, however, appearing weak on a bouncing Sam Carrick shot, and then getting only a small piece of a Wade MacLeod wrister from along the boards before it deflected behind him, spotting Toronto a 2-0 lead.

The ‘Dogs had a rare opportunity to cut into the deficit in the period’s dying seconds when Sven Andrighetto – playing his first game with the team – fed Akim Aliu – the standout of training camp – on the doorstep, but Aliu’s deflection was turned aside by Garrett Sparks. Andrighetto had a tough night defensively, but was one of the more creative Bulldogs in the offensive zone, while Aliu continued to bring his physical brand of hockey mixed with flashes of his top end puck skills.

The game got choppy from there on, with three separate fights and scrums after most whistles, which led to a second period lacking any real flow. The goaltenders switched halfway through the game, with Robert Mayer making his preseason debut for Hamilton, but scoring chances were limited for either side.

Patrick Holland
Patrick Holland (Photo: Getty Images)

Toronto looked poised to skate to an easy win in the third period’s early-goings, but the ‘Dogs ensured the fans in Cobourg, Ontario – host city for the night’s preseason action – would see an exciting finish. Just before the midway mark, with Hamilton on the powerplay, a Patrick Holland blast from the point squeaked through traffic in front and past Christopher Gibson to pull his side within one. Holland regularly played the point on the powerplay last season, and was back in that role in his first warm-up contest, while lining up at centre five-on-five.

For the final ten minutes, the Bulldogs controlled much of the play, but their momentum was thwarted by an unfortunate penalty call, where Akim Aliu was the only man sent to the box out of a large scrum. Marlies’ skaters regularly targeted Aliu after whistles, and so if there were any discipline or character issues there – the primary knock against him – he was being put to the test and handled himself rather well.

After killing the penalty, the ‘Dogs’ pressure resumed, and Ben Duffy nearly tipped in a Jordan Owens centering feed. The offensive zone shift would draw a powerplay as Aliu – in the middle of the action again – would be taken out hard into the boards by Jason Beattie. Unfortunately, despite the late flurry evening what had once been a lopsided shot disadvantage, the powerplay proved fruitless, and the Marlies would hold on for their second win in as many days.

Prior to the game, the Bulldogs had announced the first seven cuts of training camp. Peter Delmas was assigned to Orlando of the ECHL, while Chad Wiseman, Andre Morrissette, David Laliberta, Trevor Bruess, Pierre Durepos, and Matt Lashoff were released from their free agent tryout agreements. Many more cuts are to come this week, as there remain twenty forwards, thirteen defensemen, and three goaltenders in camp.

The Bulldogs fall to 0-2-0 in the preseason, and wrap up their exhibition schedule with a game in Dundas, Ontario on Thursday night against the Utica Comets. They then open the regular season at Copps Coliseum on October 11th.

Bulldogs Line-up:
Ben Duffy – Akim Aliu – Sven Andrighetto
Erik Nystrom – Alex Belzile – Stephen MacAulay
Justin Courtnall – Patrick Holland – Jordan Owens
Stefan Fournier – Joonas Nattinen – Kelsey Wilson

Dalton Thrower – Drew Schiestel
Morgan Ellis – Jeremy Price
Nathan McIver – Jonathan Narbonne

Dustin Tokarski
Robert Mayer

 

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IceCaps game report

Tryout Filled Bulldogs Drop Preseason Opener to Marlies

By Dan Kramer, Senior Writer, All Habs Hockey Magazine

OAKVILLE, ON – The Hamilton Bulldogs opened their preseason calendar Friday night, and for the first few minutes, picked right back up where they left off last year. A weak line-up filled mostly with tryouts was dominated early by a Toronto Marlies squad highlighted by some of the Leafs’ top prospects, but fought back to make a game of it after Toronto had staked out a 2-0 lead. In the end, however, a valiant effort would fall short, with a late Spencer Abbott goal snapping a 3-3 tie and en empty netter rounding out the 5-3 Marlies victory.

Condon's debut in a Bulldogs sweater was a success, despite the loss (PHOTO: Ontario Reign)
Condon’s debut in a Bulldogs sweater was a success, despite the loss (PHOTO: Ontario Reign)

The Marlies opened the scoring when Mike Condon gave up a juicy rebound on a Kevin Marshall shot, kicking it cross-crease to where Jerry D’Amigo had an easy tap in. Condon appeared shaky when moments later, no one could clear Greg McKegg from in the crease, and his third whack at the puck snuck across the goal line to give Toronto a 2-0 lead. In fairness to the ‘Dogs, their roster contained few players expected to be major contributor to the team this season, while the Marlies iced multiple top Leafs prospects for the first half of a back-to-back.

But the tryouts on the Hamilton side were determined to strut their stuff in what could be their only chance to do so, given the Bulldogs’ short three game pre-season schedule. Though a 5-on-3 proved unfruitful, before the second penalty could expire, a Dalton Thrower point shot was narrowly missed on a deflection attempt by Alex Belzile, but the puck would bounce back in front off Akim Aliu for a Chad Wiseman tap-in before Christopher Gibson could recover, cutting the lead in half. Erik Nystrom – who left Sweden for a mere 25-game tryout deal with the Bulldogs – tied the score with a nifty deflection of a Joel Chouinard blast before the first frame was out.

The Bulldogs stormed out of the gates to start the second period, with the best scoring chance coming from Wiseman again off an Aliu rebound. Aliu was easily Hamilton’s most dangerous forward on the night, but Wiseman couldn’t find the puck in his skates quickly enough to capitalize for what would have been Aliu’s third assist. Though the Dogs were outchancing their rivals, it would be Toronto’s Wade MacLeod who would break the tie, tipping a Sam Carrick point shot past Condon during a delayed penalty.

After appearing shaky on the first two goals, Condon was solid between the pipes, notably robbing a Marlie with a cross-crease dive during a 4-on-3 penalty kill where it seemed he had no chance. The Princeton University alum will be in his first professional season, though he is almost certain to begin in the ECHL with Dustin Tokarski and Robert Mayer in the picture for Hamilton.

The second period ended on a bit of a scary note when Matt Lashoff took a hard hit while pinching in the offensive zone and was slow to get up. That ended his night, and perhaps his entire disappointing tryout with the organization.

Just before the ten minute mark of the third, Kelsey Wilson – the originator of a line-brawl in the game’s first period – appeared to tie the game on a great feed from Belzile, but despite him being the only player near the net, the goal was strangely waved off. The official announcement was that the net had come off its moorings, but the Oakville complex unfortunately offered no in-game replays.

Stefan Fournier would managed to knot things up a minute later, squeaking a shot through Sparks. Fournier nearly went from hero to goat, taking a penalty shortly after his tying goal, but sound goaltending and good defensive work from Chouinard (to go with his pair of helpers) kept it even.

Despite continued strong play from Condon, the Marlies would regain the lead with under two minutes to play. Jerry D’Amigo would spot Spencer Abbott alone on the doorstep after Matt Grassi lost his man in coverage, and Abbott had an easy tap-in to an open side of the net.

Shortly after Condon got to the bench for an extra attacker, Alex Belzile would turn the puck over in the neutral zone, and D’Amigo completed his night as the best skater for either side with an empty netter, icing the 5-3 victory.

The game should have ended there, but there was a strange dust up with fifteen seconds to play. Wilson again dropped the gloves, this time with Sam Carrick, and after a good bout of several blows exchanged each way, a fired up Wilson walked behind Hamilton’s bench, shouting on his way to the dressing room.

 

Hamilton line-up:
Erik Nystrom – Ben Duffy – Jordan Owens
Chad Wiseman – Akim Aliu – Alex Belzile
Justin Courtnall – Joonas Nattinen – Andre Morrissette
Stephen MacAulay – Stefan Fournier – Kelsey Wilson

Dalton Thrower – Matt Lashoff
Jeremy Price – Joel Chouinard
Matt Grassi – Nathan McIver

Mike Condon
Robert Mayer

 

The Bulldogs are next in action Saturday night with a rematch against the Marlies in Cobourg, Ontario. Their final preseason game is scheduled for Thursday, October 3rd against the Utica Comets in Dundas, Ontario, before opening their regular season at home on Friday, October 11th. You can tune in via radio throughout the season on the new home of the Hamilton Bulldogs, Hamilton AM 900 CHML, which will feature brand new pre- and post-game shows sure to highlight many Montreal Canadiens’ prospects.

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IceCaps game report

Bulldogs Heat Up, Primed for Big Second Half [with AUDIO]

By Dan Kramer, Senior Writer, All Habs Hockey Magazine

POST-GAME AUDIO: Patrick Holland | Gabriel Dumont | Sylvain Lefebvre

HAMILTON, ON – In a first game previewing what a post-NHL CBA American Hockey League might look like, the Hamilton Bulldogs got the better of their rival Toronto Marlies winning a 2-1 decision on a luck late Gabriel Dumont goal.  The Bulldogs registered five of a possible six points on their three-game home-stand and have been playing competitive hockey, critical as the season reaches its midway point and the team has an enormous chasm to make up in the standings.

Robert Mayer made 23 stops in his third straight start for the 'Dogs. (PHOTO: Bradley Kalpin)
Robert Mayer made 23 stops in his third straight start for the ‘Dogs. (PHOTO: Bradley Kalpin)

Despite the NHL lockout being settled and the new CBA all-but-ratified, both squads dressed the majority of their AHL rosters, with the Marlies holding out just Matt Frattin and the injured Jake Gardiner, while all of Mike CommodoreFrederic St. DenisGabriel DumontBrendan Gallagher, and Louis Leblanc played for the Bulldogs despite their possible presence at Montreal’s camp next week.  The fact is that even if the five might get a short stint with the Canadiens, they are all likely to return to the Bulldogs’ line-up before long with 23 players (once P.K. Subban is signed) on NHL deals already.  Realistically, only Dumont perhaps has a chance of getting some time with the team at this stage due to an injury to Petteri Nokelainen, but his presence on the roster would mean no tryout for the team’s top prospect in Alex Galchenyuk.  In fact, though the Bulldogs still sit 30th overall in the American Hockey League, they are a team that should remain relatively intact while opposing squads are weakened, perhaps setting them up for a stretch run and shot at a post-season berth.

The game matched the Hamilton Bulldogs usual script early on, with the ‘Dogs leading the Marlies in shots through a scoreless first period but without much in the way of discernible scoring opportunities.  The Marlies got on the board first in the second with a Nazem Kadri goal off an offensive zone face-off, then looked to add to their lead and take over the game with a lengthy 5-on-3 powerplay.

But for the second time in as many games, the ‘Dogs came up with a huge kill, without so much as even giving up a quality scoring chance.  In the final minutes, Hamilton was on a powerplay of their own, and as it expired, Jason DeSantis made a great play at the blueline, jumping to keep a puck in the zone, and finding Mike Blunden in front. With a mess of players including a pinching Nathan Beaulieu crashing the net, Blunden found Patrick Holland at the other side of the crease and he buried the puck, scoring in the final second of a period for the second time in the past three games.

The third was a strange period of unsuccessful man advantages for both sides, and the teams remained tied entering the final minute.  It was then that Dumont centered the puck which took a couple of funny bounces of Marlie defenders before finally banking in off Jussi Rynnas for his team-leading 11th.

“He’s greasy like that. That’s typical of him (Dumont) for sure,” half-joked Holland about the winning goal after the game.  “We even tell him to shoot from there all the time cause he just has a knack for tricking goalies. It’s tough for a goalie to stop that I’m sure.”

The ‘Dogs held on for the rest of the final minute allowing the Dumont tally to stand up as the winner.  Dumont himself says he has no indication if or when he’ll get a call to pack a bag for Montreal, so for the time being, he and the rest of the Bulldogs can only look ahead to try to keep their streak going when they visit the Rochester Americans this Friday night.

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IceCaps game report

Marlies vs Bulldogs: Mayer Backstops Dogs to Home Opener Win

By Dan Kramer, Senior Writer, All Habs Hockey Magazine

HAMILTON, ON – A packed house filled the lower bowl of Copps Coliseum as the Hamilton Bulldogs upended the Toronto Marlies 4-1 in the first home game for Montreal’s AHL affiliate this season, improving to 2-0-0 to start the year.

Mayer has stood tall two games into the season (Photo by Jennifer Kuhn)

Many were disappointed when it was revealed an injury would prevent Cedric Desjardins from starting the season with the Bulldogs, but undoubtedly the biggest benefactor from this situation is Robert Mayer.  On at least this night, Mayer – who many have criticized to be lacking confidence in his game at times – was spectacular, turning aside 39 shots, including many highlight-worthy stops, and having his shutout bid broken only by an accurate Jake Gardiner howitzer in the third period.  Deservedly, Mayer was recognized as the game’s first star for his efforts.

The ‘Dogs got off to a bit of a slow start, caused in part by early penalty trouble, but they took cues from their goaltender, and Louis Leblanc – fresh out of the box – buried a pass from Darryl Boyce in the dying moments of the first period.  The play was started by Jarred Tinordi with a good breakout pass from his own end, earning him an assist and thus his first pro point.

Hamilton was outshot 16-6 in the first, yet escaped up 1-0, and the line of Steve QuailerBlake Geoffrion, and Brendan Gallagher had opportunities to add to it.  But ultimately it would be Patrick Holland – with his first professional goal – who found a loose puck in front of the net and doubled the Bulldogs lead.

If the Geoffrion-centered line was Hamilton’s tops through a period and a half, it largely disappeared for the remainder of the game.  Fortunately, other players took over, with Aaron Palushaj being the most dangerous forward for either side throughout the third period. His goal put the game out of reach at 3-0, but he could have had one or two others with the way he handled the puck in the attacking zone.  Of importance, his marker came on the powerplay, an area in which Hamilton had looked really weak up till that point, and definitely something the team needs to improve upon.  But Palushaj converted a precision pass from Holland, finishing the play with a hard snipe, and went on to earn honours as the game’s “Hardest Working Bulldog” (a feature Hamilton runs in addition to the three stars) for a thoroughly impressive 20 minutes.

Corbin has impressively fit right in on Hamilton’s blueline (Photo by Journal de Montréal / Jean-François Chaumont)

There were a significant number of Leaf jerseys in Copps Coliseum, and the Toronto faithful were given something to cheer about on Gardiner’s goal at 10:12.  But the ‘Dogs skaters did a solid job shutting it down the rest of the way, with their impressive defensive unit strutting its stuff.  Jarred Tinordi notably had some good shotblocks and clears, though he also bobbled the puck on a few occasions.  Greg Pateryn certainly follows the adage of playing the man and not the puck, and stood up a few Marlie forwards.  Antoine Corbin impressed, and seems to be establishing himself as a deserving AHL’er after earning his contract through a training camp invite.  And lastly Nathan Beaulieu‘s skating and skill level were on display at several points during the evening with rushes that might remind many of P.K. Subban.

Louis Leblanc with his second of the night sealed the deal into an empty net, and thus game 1 of a home-and-home (to be completed Saturday) went to  the ‘Dogs.  Despite expected animosity when these rival clubs face-off, there wasn’t a significant amount of rough stuff on this night, with just one near-fight between Brendon Nash and Nazem Kadri, the latter of whom used his opponent’s helmet as a weapon at one point, jabbing from behind.  Tempers did flare after the final whistle, which led to Zack Stortini rushing back into the fray from near the Hamilton bench, but the referees were very quick to step in before anything got out of hand.

The Bulldogs kept the same lineup as their season opening shootout win, meaning Alexander AvtsinAlain Berger, and Joonas Nattinen (who may still have the flu) were scratched, while Cedric Desjardins and Morgan Ellis have yet to be cleared to return to action.