Friday, April 18, 2008

Green Bay Gamblers 2008-09 Preview

Green Bay is coming off a dismal year and are looking to rebound with a brand new coach, who has yet to be named. The Gamblers have a solid possible returning duo in net, so they will need to focus on some scoring.


Key Departures:
Taylor McReynolds-Good penalty killer, tough and physical.
Ryan Little-Scrappy defenseman, team leader.

Goalie (2):
Neil Conway (1988) - Conway posted respectable numbers for a poor team. Could be in for big year.
Aaron Crandall (1990) - Young, quality goalie.

Goalie Evaluation:
If the next Gamblers coach puts some talent in front of these two, the Gamblers are going to be a force next season. Their goalies were their bright spot last year, but sadly, Conway and Crandall were unable to score goals. If given the right opportunities, these two could form one of the better goalie duos in the league.

Defense (4):
Robert Shea (1990) - Rugged defenseman who turned into a viable option for the Gamblers.
Chase Drake (1989) - Only appeared in 10 games, no points and -5.
Chris Saracino (1989) - Not overly impressive when I saw him. Seemed to be a weak skater at Fall Classic.
Taylor Johnson (1989) - Very sound defenseman, should be their go to guy next season.

Defense Evaluation:
As of now, Shea is still listed as an 08 or 09 recruit for Bowling Green. I think Bowling Green, the Gamblers, and Shea would benefit if he spent another year in the USHL. Green Bay will need to add some defensemen as Shea appears to be the only sure thing of this group, though I was never able to see Drake play since he joined the team late. With the mention of Johnson coming back, and through some confirmation, it looks like the Gamblers' blue line just got a lot better. They will have a top notch guy like Taylor Johnson to build around and Robert Shea gives them a 2nd quality guy back there.

Forwards (8):
Jacob Johnstone (1990) - As a forward, had a disappointing year. 2 goals, 3 assists, -22.
Keegan Flaherty (1990) - Has potential, but wasn't able to put up many points last season.
Justin Filzen (1989) - Had a decent year, should come close to doubling that output.
C.J. Lee (1989) - Probably their best forward returns, should lead team in scoring.
Max Cook (1990) - Highly touted, should be a force next season.
Anthony Hayes (1989) - Good on the PK, not very flashy from what I saw.
Stephen Carew (1988) - Appears to be a good defensive forward, only a -8 on a bad Gamblers team.
Jacob Youso (1990) - Highly touted forward, could be a top player.

Forward Evaluation:
Though Green Bay could return some decent scorers, they really seemed to lack the ability to score goals last season. C.J. Lee will lead the offense and younger guys like Max Cook and Jacob Youso should be ready to step in and be relied on. Flaherty has a lot of potential, so hopefully he can tap into that and become a potent scorer. Anthony Hayes is the type of player who will help out his team however possible, making him a nice asset.

Futures Evaluation:
One thing Mark Mazzoleni always seemed to do well was draft young talent in the futures drafts and lure kids to Green Bay. He has set up the next coach with a few gems as well. Leading that group is defenseman Joey Gleason. He could end up going to North Dakota, but you can bet Green Bay will be doing everything in their power to convince him to venture over to Wisconsin. Another defenseman that could be a good one is John Ramage, son of former NHLer Rob Ramage. There are also two more stars from the Edina team that appear on Green Bay's futures list, though it's not too likely they will show up. Anders Lee and Zach Budish are the players, but at this point it seems slim that they will play in the USHL. Budish may go straight from Edina to the University of Minnesota, while Lee is a big football star and may not be willing to leave that behind. Jake Gardiner was also drafted, but he is slated to enroll at Wisconsin for next fall.


Overall Evaluation: C-

67 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hope they DO NOT bring Regg Simon here.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree, I could not stand to watch another year in the basement.

Anonymous said...

How many teams in our league have openings for coaches now? 5?

GB PUCK MAN said...

if they bring crandall and conway back they will have a long season!

Anonymous said...

6 teams having openings.

Anonymous said...

i heard last nite it will be 7.

Anonymous said...

GB, Duh Moines, SUX, who else?

Anonymous said...

I disagree with GB Puck Man - Crandall and Conway were fine. Although I don't expect Conway to be back.

I hope CJ Lee steps it up scoring - I was hoping for more this year. Some of the younger guys will need to add some goals (ie Carew).

The defense was the weakest part of the team. Turnover here might not be all bad.

Look for either Corbett or Strand to get the coaching job.
====
Des Moines, SC and GB have openings. I have heard people say Omaha and TriCity need a coach, but I didn't know Hastings and Littler were going anywhere.

-gbpuckfan

Anonymous said...

Green Bay, Omaha, Sioux City, Des Moines, Tri City and Cedar Rapids will need new coaches. Omaha will hire Littler, so that vacancy is taken care of already. Technically Ohio, but that is because they won't exist and if they are moved, they will need new coaching.

Anonymous said...

May see more changes after playoffs.

Anonymous said...

I've heard the runors about Hastings only being GM and about Littler becoming the Omaha coach. At this point just rumors.

Anonymous said...

Crandall and conway are excellent goalies but the just didn't have a team to work with in GB

Anonymous said...

From what I heard Neil Conway is not coming back, he wants to go back and play in Canada and get paid.

Crandell and Conway were great, if it wasn't for them we really would of got our asses kicked last year.

Regg Simon is a great coach and he will end up somewhere. I dont think it will be GB, from how it sounds. They have it down to 3 candidates.

http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080419/GPG0209/804190469/1246/GPGsports

Jamie
Go Gamblers

Anonymous said...

Simon will not land in the USHL.

Anonymous said...

Is Mark Carlson really leaving Cedar Rapids - that would be a shame. He's done a great job there and should have a good team next year. And what about Ohio not having a team? Is this someone just trying to fuel the rumor mill or are these valid comments?

Anonymous said...

Carlson is moving up to college. Good job for him. Ohio not having a team is correct, but seriously, who will miss them?

Anonymous said...

C- for the team with the worst record in the league?? That team needs a complete overhaul stating in goal and moving out. Mazz had a good team at tryouts last year and cut a bunch of quality players who could really have helped. You can't blame the goalies entirely for the record but look at Lincoln what a quality goalie can do to turn a team around, you didn't have quality goaltenders either.

Anonymous said...

Good job on the Gambler preview. Hopefully with a new coach and some new additions and veterans improving, they will have a stronger season next year. Crandall will have a good season next year and hopefully more consistent if he can get more help in front of him.

Looks like there are going to be a lot of new faces behind the benches next season. Are all of the coaching changes "for sures"?

Anonymous said...

"Ohio not having a team is correct, but seriously, who will miss them?"

Huh, what do you base that on? While the Ohio team is not very likely to return to Columbus, it will exist in another city and with a new name, those players will have a place to play.

If thier staff is retained is another issue.

Anonymous said...

Carlson is NOT leaving CR for college, where do you come up with these things? my brother works w/ the team, && he is def. NOT leaving. so don't worry 'bout that.

Anonymous said...

The list of coaches "leaving" is a farce. Sounds like some pinhead disgrunted fans from a losing team is throwing gossip out to see what sticks.

If you are going to spread stuff like this, post your sources and references. Little voices in your head and what you wish would happen don't count.

Anonymous said...

as for the GB situation i have heard that taylor johnson will be returning and max cook might possibly be leaving for school. Johnson will be a nice player to have back on D.

Anonymous said...

ummm as for the carlson issue, i havent heard anything whatsoever and believe me, i would. as for the ohio thing and kids having a place to play, if the team cannot be sold and relocated, they will in all likelyhood fold and a dispersal draft would then be conducted and its up to the teams that draft the players to whether they make the team or not. the only way the team stays is if the USHL puts forth a good chunk of money to keep them in ohio until a sale is reached.

Anonymous said...

thank you!! people need to stop spreading rumors..carlson is def. not leaving..and i haven't heard that ohio thing either....

i'm friends w/ several guys on the OH team, and they haven't told me anything like that..&& beleive me, they would lemme know

Anonymous said...

yeah and im sure they just tell all their players everything regarding the business side of the organization and keep them so well informed haha but you should probably ask them again because they should probably know that their coaches have been told to find new jobs.

Anonymous said...

Mike Guentzel just resigned from the U. could a USHL return be in the future????

Anonymous said...

haha okay. so they prolly don't get told the buisness side. myyyy bad.

but still, the whole carlson issue, people need to drop it. he's def. not leaving, it would be stupid if he did. cr has the possibility to return 14 players..it would be dumb for him to leave next years team....

Anonymous said...

Saw in the paper Luke Strand was one of the finalist for the Head Coaching position here. Interesting. Look at the guys who have come to the USHL from pro hockey and at the success (or lack there-of) they've had. Des Moines, Sioux Falls and Indy all tried that route and proved to not be successful. We can't keep on a down-ward spiral.

Anonymous said...

"they should probably know that their coaches have been told to find new jobs"

not true. your a joke. keep spreading your crap rumors, its much appreciated.

Anonymous said...

"...because they should probably know that their coaches have been told to find new jobs."

Again - HUH? Come out from behind the anonymous wall and tell us exactly WHY we should believe anything you say?

- fangers

Anonymous said...

okay dont belive me. i dont really care. its your choice. im just saying what i know. Nobody wants to buy a team in which there is NO POSSIBLE way to make money being so far away from the rest of the league, whether they stay in columbus, cleveland, muskegon, youngstown, i dont know where ever. do you guys realize very few teams in this league make money? why wouldnt he sell the team or fold it?? they lose on average 1 million dollars a year, and his son got a scholarship. they were losing $500,000 a year when in the NAHL. it only makes sense. i hope it doesnt happen as it would be a black eye for the league but i know what i know and looking at the numbers, its what also makes sense.

Anonymous said...

There's no argument that Ohio team's future is in doubt...but to say the coaches have been told what you claim is a pretty big statement, just looking for something back that up, that's all..

Anonymous said...

scary time for those players poised to enter the league this upcoming season, what with all the coaching changes - both known & speculated...would assume this be the exception rather the rule in terms of turnover?

Anonymous said...

Saw in the paper Luke Strand was one of the finalist for the Head Coaching position here. Interesting. Look at the guys who have come to the USHL from pro hockey and at the success (or lack there-of) they've had. Des Moines, Sioux Falls and Indy all tried that route and proved to not be successful. We can't keep on a down-ward spiral.
=========
I strongly believe you are very wrong.

Luke has a history in the USHL and college. He has spent 1 year - 1 as an assistant in the pros. He would - and will - do very well as a head coach in this league.

-gbpuckfan

Anonymous said...

Two of the three guys who came from pro hockey had previous experience in the USHL as well. The thing with the USHL is it is recruiting & personnel (players) that make teams good. Good teams usually have the best players (duh!). I just worry a guy from pro hockey isn't going to know the player pool like a guy who is already in junior hockey or coming in from college hockey. My two cents anyways.

---Gambler Fan

Anonymous said...

I agree with Jamie, Regg Simon is a class act. Keegan Flaherty said he loved playing for him and PK O'Handley with the USA team. All of that being said, any other word on other finalist?

Anonymous said...

Good luck gb on getting a first rate coach. Looks like we may get a bottom feeder here in SC. UGH

Anonymous said...

So maybe just do not renew your season tickets until you get a feel for your new coach's abilities.

bob said...

Luke Strand should be the next GB head coach. He's a WI guy through and through. And has the coaching background for the job.

Anonymous said...

Simon & class. Dont think that fits, at least not anymore.

bob said...

My other thought is, why is it taking so long? They've interviewed roughly 7 guys, so now make a decision. The draft is coming up in 3 or 4 weeks, something needs to happen soon.

Anonymous said...

I do believe we will be hearing the announcement within the week.

bob said...

well we know its not Todd Knott as he was named head coach at SC

Anonymous said...

Thats good news for the Gamblers.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps waiting on Mike Guentzel to make a decision?

Anonymous said...

Any news yet? The other teams are on the way.

Anonymous said...

No news about our coaches yet, but I hope we can tab coaches like they did in Des Moines.

Anonymous said...

Ryan, a C-? Come on.

Ryan said...

For those wondering, I give Green Bay a C- due to their affiliated roster and how much better it could make them. It's all speculation. Without bringing the affiliates into the equation, they probably get a D.

Anonymous said...

We are screwed now if the news is true.

Anonymous said...

Why in the holy name of jesus did they do that? Who will be the assistant, is that out of the bag yet?

Anonymous said...

What is next year heading for?

I cannot understand the SCity choice and this choice. They bypassed some better coaches.

Anonymous said...

Hear alot of boo's from the fans in St. Louis. Should have waited to release the news.

Anonymous said...

WONDER WHY THEY DIDNT. MAYBE JON DOES NOT CARE? THINK THE USHL AS A WHOLE WOULD THOUGH. THEY DONT LIKE THIS KIND OF STUFF. WHAT A PITY.

Anonymous said...

Hey, does our C- go up or down?


Pete

Anonymous said...

Its a D now.

Anonymous said...

Just to add, think the news released yesterday was done in poor taste. Not thrilled with the choice,I do hope the assist will be someone I am familair with.

Anonymous said...

I for one am disappointed in the selection. My call: could have done better
in the picking of the Head Coach.



Gamblers Man

Anonymous said...

The test will be to improve our grade from D up. Jon has experience but with a stacked deck. There is not a lot of pressure on him cause we cant be any worse than last year.

Anonymous said...

Not sure why anyone would be disappointed with the choice, unless of course you were pulling for your own candidate. This guy has a winning record, won coach of year 2x for the NAHL, tons of experience on multiple teams, and is a business degree graduate, a lawyer and a Canadian. Who could ask for more?

Anonymous said...

I could always ask for more, who needs a lawyer on the bench I would much rather have an more experienced coach. Watch out for lawyers jokers!

Anonymous said...

wonder why they will (?) up and make him the h/c? I can understand a/c, but not the big cheese.

Anonymous said...

My candidate got passed over and no I am not happy about it either.

Let's be fair and loyal and move guys up the ranks in a steady manner rathar than to bypass other better suited coaches in the league.

Anonymous said...

Now the team is retracting the release. This whole thing started by an article put on a blog website that you need to pay to view. Well I dont pay to read any blog so I think it was bad to put blog info from a paid blog spot on this blog.

Gambler Fan

Anonymous said...

Looks like the Gams cannot get their act together like the other professional management does for the other USHL teams.

Anonymous said...

Read the news from the Gamblers today. Feel sorry for them having to have to resort to this action.

Gamblers have enough on their hands than trying to swim upstream to keep ahead of the big mouths.

Good Luck Gamblers!!!

Anonymous said...

How many teams still have openings in the USHL?