THE #ESHOW
THE #ESHOW

Episode · 11 months ago

Team of the Week (Avalanche) | Episode 79

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

On this week's episode of the #EShow we feature a program that's placed 72 players into college, dating back to their inception into the league in 2017. Coming over from Hartford, Chris Cerrella helped establish an instant contender when he arrived in New Hampshire (1:27). Along with the impressive commitment totals that the Avalanche have posted, they've also appeared in all 3 Championship Games that the league has hosted at the EHL Frozen Finals. After winning it all in 2018 and 2019, Cerrella and the Avalanche lost to the Rangers in overtime this past March, thus, the revenge tour has begun for this upcoming year. With tons of talented players that have come through the program, the #ECrew wraps up the episode by taking their best crack at assembling the latest all-time lineup (26:45).

Welcome to the e show with Neil Raven. With over one thousand NCAA commitments, the EH L is the proven path to college. Turn it up and learn more about the college placement leader at the division two and three levels. Welcome to the east show, presented by the penalty box foundation. The foundation's mission centers around their daily motto we take care of our own as they help out all of those within the hockey community who've experienced a catastrophic event. Learned more at penalty box foundation dot Org. What's up? My name is Neil Raven and this is episode number seventy nine of the east show, and on this week's episode we feature a program that's placed seventy two players into college, dating back to their inception into the league in two thousand and seventeen. Coming over from Hartford, Christrella helped establish an instant contender when he arrived in New Hampshire. Along with the impressive commitment totals of the avalanche have posted, they've also appeared in all three championship games at the League has hosted at the EHL frozen finals. After winning it all in two thousand and eighteen and two thousand and nineteen, crilla and the avalanche lost the Rangers and overtime this past March. Thus the revenge tour has begun for this upcoming year, with tons of talented players that have come through the program the e crew wraps up the episode, but taking their best crack at assembling the latest all time line up. I'm enjoying now by Chris Sorella, the head coach and general manager of the New Hampshire Avalanche. Has it going. Chris, good meal, thanks for having me on last summer at your house, this summer at my house for your team of the week feature. You're the only coach that I do this live with. Well, we're living what like four and a half miles away from each other now, so it's kind of convenient and, as you said at the finals, I am your neighbor, not the other way around. Yes, I lived here first. Yeah, so definitely you are my neighbor, even though we're in my wife's hometown. It okay, fair enough. Still there. Still my neighbor. So let's jump into last season. Obviously one of the most challenging years we've ever had as a league. There's so many different parts to dive into, but when you look back on what was only your fourth season but the New Hampshire avalanche. What are the positives they take away from last season? I mean just getting through and playing for about forty two regular season games and then playoffs in the final four and just everything was was fantastic. I think that that in itself was amazing. Our League did all the right things, we made all the right moves, all the teams were terrific. It just just the biggest positive was finishing the year for the players and I think that was everyone's key to start. Yes, so there was. It wasn't perfect, but it was. It was. It was great experience for everyone. It's something would probably never experience again, but to have that under our belt and know that we can make it through almost just about everything at this point, it was an amazing thing for our leak and what I do on this podcast a lot as I like to go on and talk about when people were right. So I will admit on this podcast today that at one point during the fall last year you had said to me we're going to play just within our division this season and I said, Oh, let's keep giving it time, keep giving it time. You were right. After after we turn the calendar year. You played just the same three teams over and over and over again. How challenging was that, knowing that when you went to a game it was out again to the wolves, the Spartans of the lumberjacks? I think it was good and bad, right. I mean we took a toll on each other, all of us, coaches, players league, I mean playing the same teams over and over again, but at the same time it was better than not playing at all. So the the fact that we did break into the divisions we had the availability to do so, was a great idea. I was right, just like you are, my neighbor. I'm right about that too. You know, it was just awesome how were able to have that set up for the players and it worked out great, I think, for every team. So going back, it was awesome. A lot of bumps, a lot of bruises for the players, but we made it and it was a great great results and for the crew that was on the podcast last year, I said all year long the North Division was the toughest. After night one of the finals, I was pounding my chest. I'm sure you were as well. What made the four teams so tough? I think it was just so competitive. They're there, the coaches were competitive, the players were competitive. Every game was a war, basically, especially in the second half. You know, Vermont, who didn't play a lot early, on them coming in. They had a lot to prove and the wolves got better with the Adams got better. Spartans, you know, my opinion, were probably the most improved team. Coach try to get a great job with that team there down the stretch and it just every day was a battle. It was competitive then. It's the players loved it and when we rearranged the format to that divisional onement that we were talking about, it became very clear and made a very clear to everyone...

...what the at large was all about. So it's get the elephant in the run was covered right now, because you went to the finals as the at large. Yes, obviously the rest did prove to help you, but at the same time, with that week off, something then no one's ever gone there before. Yep, how did you reset your team's focus and almost convince them that they had as good a chance as anyone? Yeah, I think what you know. I to be honest with you, I think what happened. You know, we were playing the same teams over and over again and it was almost at times we lost ourselves in our identity a little bit, I think, and you know, taking the beatings that we took down the stretch, that we got beat up some games, and taking that beating down the stretch I think just rejuvenated our guys in that week off and you know, we just revamped and, you know, went over our systems again, had fun again and it worked out well. I thought we played really well in the final four. We were lucky enough to get there and I thought we played really well and when the first game ended, I remember looking to my right from with a broadcast perspective was and George McMichael grabbed, I'm what I would assume would be a monkey off his back and threw it up into the year. Did you see him do that or was yeah, yeah, we George and I had talked about that a little bit before because he struggled a little bit down the stretch. He was great for us all year. I think he was an MVP for US type player. You know, he's going the boat next year, which is a great pick up for them, and George was just awesome all year and he just hit a Scurti is back, was bothering them a little bit and he just struggled to make the big saves he was making early on. So to see him get that win and I think it was a breath of fresh air for him, but it was also a breath of fresh air for us knowing we had that guy back that we knew we had. So it was it was really good. It was. George has done a lot of funny things there in the crease all year, so that one definitely was one of my favorites. You win that game against the eighty sevens, you win the next game, nine hundred and twenty three, against the lumberjacks, which really he looked back at the lumberjacks games prior to that. They had your number down the stretch. And you get to the third game of the rains. It actually at that point doesn't really matter because you knew you were still in a championship. And then we get to the off day and you and rich come up to me and say we're going to take the at two hours of ice that you have and we're going to skate together. Yep, what went through that thought process? Well, I think it's something rich and I have done, you know, in the past and our by weeks in the past, you where we were fortunate enough to get the first round by, we would scrimmage each other. So I think we just kept with that kind of same concept. We've done it just about every year. We hadn't had the chance to do it during the covid season or, you know, during this last year, so we said why not, you know, and I think both our teams had gotten along. I mean, you know, we hadn't seen each other all year and I think it was just a great thing to have the that available of availability, to be able to do that with another team. I think it just speaks volumes for the organizations and also the players. And the best part about it was we were at the rink that day anyways because of the ehlp games that were going on, and your two teams take the ice together and Joe Bartania pulls me aside and goes what's this? I go they chose to do it together. I go, what do you tell me? Be See and be you never skated together for the hockey's championship and because, I guess it shows how much they truly respect each other and you play things out and get to the championship game. Unfortunately it ended in a loss for you. But when you take a step back and you see that we've had three frozen finals and three championship games and you've been in all of them, how does that make you feel really good. I think it just shows the organization that we run, the recruiting that we do. You know, we had nineteen NCAA division three placements on our team this year, so you know we had a good team and so did the Rangers, obviously. So it was I think it it really lived up to it its height, I guess you could say that game. It was a really good game, back and forth. Either team could have won and but to be in it three years like that, it's I don't know if it's good luck or what, but but you know, it was a good job by both teams and it was a great job by all the teams in entire league this year, whether they made the frozen finals or not. I think it was just a special year. And September eighteen you're playing again. You guys always play sometimes towards of air beinning of the year. Why? Just because, just because I think it's it's become a pretty good rivalry in terms of you know the players and it. Why not? Why not continue that trend? I think both teams like that. You can, you know, you can play another very good team early and so why not? Why not continue it? And you brought it up a second ago. You had nineteen commits this past year. In Four Seasons you have seventy two commitments. Quick Math, you're over fifteen a year. What do you attribute that success to? It's to be honest, if it's a players,...

...you know, it goes back to our recruiting, though. You know we we recruit in season a lot and we do our due diligence and it's just recruiting. It's we're taking the right guys, but then those guys are doing the two we're just developing them, giving him the opportunity that that the ned both on the ice, off the ice and in the gym, and they're going out and doing the work every day. So I mean it's definitely goes back to recruiting, but those players are earning it every step of the way. And I want to dive into a few of the ones in particular from this past year, because you're proud of every single commitment, as you could hear the dog panting in the background. Last year it was your dog in the garage, this year it's my dog at my house. But there's so many commits that you're proud of. But there's a few that I want to touch on because you brought up George earlier. To see a player who, in his first year with your program his rule isn't as big as it was the second year, and then commit to a school that's as prestigious as Bowt it, you have to do pat yourself in the back at some point, right. Yeah, I mean I think George believed in the process. He came in. Essentially he was our third guy. He did the work, he bought in, he he competed all year, he got some games in and then we actually put them on. He finished the year on the EHL premier team and then the following year we call them up and said you're the guy, we're going to hand you this ball. Are you ready? He obviously had a fantastic offseason and while what a season he had this year, I don't you know. Yeah, he had a couple of games where he struggled, but who doesn't throw out throughout a course of a year. But he was fantastic from start to finish, from the from the first safe to the last save of the year. He was great. He improved, just a great young man. He believed in himself, he believed in our process and now he's going a boat in the NESCAC, a great hockey and great academic institution. So who's better than him at this point? And that's a two year guy right. So that let's cover the three year guy, because you really haven't really had that many three year guys in your history. But we can't get through a whole avalanche podcast and not talk about Chris arrant, who was your captain and honestly, to me he was probably one of the toughest players who are had in this league period. Yeah, Chris is a warrior, he's a he's going to be a fantastic college hockey player, but he has that old school mentality. He plays the game right. He you know, he finish his checks, he competes, he gets in guy's faces, he does all the right things. He does it obviously legally. He doesn't take a lot of penalties and things, but he plays on the edge and he's our captain for two years in a row there and probably one of the best captains that I've ever had. I've had a lot of really good ones, Shane Visnik, who's just graduated brockport. It was another one who was one of my captains, Chris, I think you know, and Chris did a better job. I think he was just awesome. He held our team together, he did the right things. He's a good young man on and off the ice and I know Jeff and are going to get into this later on. I don't want to go too far into the details because every player in the hockey seasons long, but knowing what he was going through in the finals and to keep going out there and it never bad and Iye. How did that make you feel as a coach? Yeah, Chris Battle some injuries in the second half and especially down the stretch in the playoffs. He basically he had a broken foot and it was just unbelievable how well he played, scored some big goals in the final four. was tough as nails down the stretch. Practice the same way every day no matter what. Wouldn't sit out and practice. He's just one of those guys that that did the job that he needed to do and and got better and better and that's going to make him who he is in the next four years of Brockport. They're getting. They're getting a heck of a hockey player, that's for sure, and a great family to yes, they never missed the game. No, no, they didn't miss a beat, that's for sure. And now. So that covers to there's so many to cover. But the next one I want to bring up is a player that's actually coming back this year and that's Matt Carlson, who got committed to welks, but for this upcoming next fall. When a player has a chance like that to commit quote unquote early but then stay with the program, are you pushing them in a certain direction? I how do you how do you take that on as a coach? No, I think I think it's awesome. I think it's becoming more and more popular now at the dthree level that they're you know, they're deferring a kid, letting them grow as a player. Let it. He had another year of Junior. They they liked him, he liked them. It was a perfect match. But they just didn't have the room and you know, in in terms of stalls, and Matt Carlson is to be honest with you, I believe he's this year. Could be one of the best two hundred four players in the eastern hockey league this year and might not show on the score sheet because you know he's not that kind of player where he might have eighty and ninety points, but he is going to play the game in total and...

...and Wilkes stepping up and defend committing them and deferring him shows that he is that good. And by having at least commists, they do every year. You know that you have to kind of reload the roster. If you have a fifteen commits, you reloading almost two those of your roster every year. But any have players like Christian Halbig who could come back but are going to school a year early, do you kind of have to kick yourself and say, I'd love to have them back, but he should go now. Yeah, I mean I think we do that every year. Last year we had jk Edo who went to tops. We also had aid and Leavette who went to tops. They both could have played this year. We were love to have them. Matt Matt Lane another one who went to Stevenson. He could have played this year as well. We would allowed to have him back to but the name of the game is college commitments. I think that's what makes an organization in junior hockey. Players want to play to go to college hockey. That's it. That's why they play junior and it's not my job to hold a kid back just so I can have a better team the net. My job is to recruit new players and to develop them and get them off to the next level. So if the college coaches think he's ready, then he's ready. So unfortunately we lose Christian Hell Bang on the Blue Line, but FITCHBURG state games are great one. So you know, it's I think it's a perfect kind of set up. Yeah, and I want to die now into your EHLP team, because the EHLP team is nozzles the EHL team. You when you guys first came in, you and Mario, you were focused just on the EHL team. Then you bring in the EHLP team and I know it's kind of hard to say, but you haven't. You had a couple of very good seasons that haven't ended the way that you've wanted to. Based off of a championship last year, the regular season champions, but to be able to bring in Vinny, a former player of years, and to add that core underneath your ehl team, how important has to been for the organization as a whole? Well, I think it's awesome and I'll touch on Vinnie just viny has done a great job for us at the EHL and the hlp level. Obviously is my assistant with the AHL team and then head coach of the EHLP team, and he's done a great job with that team and developing those players and he's done a great job moving them on, whether it be moving up to our EHL team or helping them to move on to club hockey or to another junior team somewhere else. He's done a great job with that and it's been a great addition for us because we've gotten some really good players to just move through the ranks. So it's really been awesome. Alex muther's box, Timmy Cronan from couple of years ago, guys like that would playing on our you a team. Well, now that we have the premier team, we're moving you know, we've moved up Connor Murray, we've moved up backster Kimball, we've moved up George McMichael Carson, father bothering am this year we have Kyle Dan moving up, we have Josh Martin moving up, we have Brendan Schmidt, who had a great season at the EHLP level. We had Graham Hassam as well moving up. So that gives us automatic recruiting. So is it going to produce US fifteen, sixteen kids every year? No, it's not. But will it produce a good amount of kids to come in and be good ehl players? Yes, it does. It gives us that availability, which I think is huge. The last name you said, Graham has son, to be able to bring up the EHLP MVP. Is Their pressure on him? I think so. A little better, a little bit of you will. Yeah, I mean he's he did a great job. He's another one that believed in the process. He could have probably left our team and went somewhere else at any point during the year because he was good enough, but he believed in the process and when we spoke to him at the end of the year and we said, Grahamy had a great year, we want to bring you up, he was like great, because I don't want to go anywhere else. So it was perfect and and I think there is a little bit of pressure on them, but I think he's going to answer the bell. I think he's gonna have a great offseason. He's a great young man and we're very excited to bring them up. And you brought up vinny and I'm glad you did because he's a former player of yours. I don't want to make you feel old with this next question, but you know, when he got vd Got Jim Moss, so Mike Lee, se colochy in the NA. Now to see so many of your former players become coaches at some point, if it takes some prod yeah, I mean we had those guys, plus we had Jake Rivera, who is at Nazareth for a year or two as an assistant coach. He played for me as well. So Mike Monty, who was a former assistant coach of mine who's out, and you eighteen Chicago Young Americans, and Ryan McGrath, coach for me, and Walpole. So it just it's fun to watch these young men come up and and find success in their own coaching career. So it's been kind of cool to have both the players that have played for me and gone on and had successes, but also the former coaches that have coached with me as well have had those successes too. When those guys face you, do you feel like you're getting the best effort you can from those teams because they want to beat you? Oh, no, question, no, but no question at all. Jimmy Maso's done a great job with Vermont and he tells me all the time. He's I just want to beat you and...

...as well. Thanks, I appreciate that. You know it's but it's good. It's good and and you know they're they're great about it too, because we laugh about it and but they're great about I feel. Yeah, they do, and I'm happy that they do that. I think it shows that they're cut from a good cloth and they want to compete and be the best they can. So it makes me proud. No question. One of the reasons they want to beat you is because of the three championship games, two titles, his seventy two commitments. What keeps you motivated to keep doing it? You know, it's just passion for the game. I was fortunate to have a good playing career and things like that, and now it's like I'm giving back and it's awesome. And now my reward is really going to US college hockey online on a Friday Saturday night and seeing former players scoring goals and having assists and winning rookie of the years or whatever they're doing. It's great to see that. I think that's the biggest reward. And you know, when that time comes at some point, I think I'm fifteen, sixteen years in this year. When that time comes, I don't know, get a job doing something else. But but it hasn't come. I still have a lot of passion for it, but developing the players and watching what they do in the future is really why I do it. And that's really what you always say to me. When you look back and you talk about the wins and the loss is, you always point out that it took you eleven years, correct, to even reach the semi finals. Yes, that that is correct. It took me eleven years to reach a semi final game. We've always lost in the quarter finals. Always have pretty good teams with college commitments, but eleven years into coaching junior hockey, and I think this is, you know, year fifteen. I believe it took me that long to get past the semi finals and finally win a championship. So it took a long time to get there and that stuff is all great and the wins, the losses, the championships is all good stuff, but it's not really my career anymore. It's two players that play for me. So to see them have that success and then move on, that's why I coach. It brings us to a broader point of us as a league being just a handful of commitments away from saying, a new record. And you look at obviously you're a program at nineteen, and then you have some teams that had more wins than they did commitments this past year. To me that shows how competitively the League is right. Yeah, I think that the League's done a great job this year, especially a and and covid with the recruiting is a little bit different right now. There's a setback. There's too many players out there right now. So for our lead to achieve that, every single team had a pretty darn good number and NCAA commitments, was fantastic. Every team improved and and that's what makes our leak so good. It's the the stability of no it's it's no players and families knowing come here to our league, to any of our teams, and find success you're looking for at the NCAA level. That's the biggest thing that kind of sticks out from our from a lage perspective. So fast forward now and we're in the beginning of March of two thousand and twenty two, and you can predict that you've got fifteen commitments in the bank at least. So it's another repeat ear for the avalanche, and I know that's your top priority. But the playoffs are about to begin. Is there going to be an extra fuel and ear fire at that point to get back and make up for what took place at this past year's championship? Um, I yeah, I mean, I guess so. I think that for me, the college commitment thing as always first, but you also want to be competitive and you want to you know, there's still that fire inside me that wants to do well. And Yeah, you know, I think you know. We lost an overtime. There was a heartbreaker. It what a game and to get back to the championship or get back to the final four and do it all over again, it's a lot of fun. That's one thing that I can say throughout this experience in the eastern hockeyaue. I think I'm the longest tenured Guy Coaching in this league at this point. I think the over the experience every year is awesome. It is it's a fun leak to be in, it's a fun leak to coach and and it's a fun leak to play in. So yeah, there is a little bit of me that still has that that drive to be the best that I could be and I think by creating the final so what we've done we've made an event that kids want to be a part of and you and you go. You look at the roster they're bringing in this year. Obviously has a bunch of new guys to fill those spots that you lost, but with the kids that you're bringing back. The HASHTAG revenge tour came out pretty quickly. was that something that came out in the closing the exit meetings, or is that the room they after the short weeks after I that was a Parker Son Dad Hashtag that he sent me as he did a little video for the returning players that he kind of put, you know and everyday life of an ad video out to the returning guys and I think I believe I shared it with you, Neil and and it was just a video of the finals and the final four, the...

...just, you know, the process that we had and he did a great job making and at the end he wrote revenge tour, and I think it was kind of cool. You know, I think they got a little bit of fire. They felt they got, you know, it ended a little short for them and that's great that we got that group of returning guys that will want to do really well and show the next group of ABS what it takes to get there for a program that's had as much success as you've had. I guess that to me proves that we've built something right if these guys are that motivated that they got to go out and get their revenge. So this is this is the typical time of year where I know at this point your kind of goal. It is July fourth to have your team kind of almost set in stone. Is that because of the marathon? That is the season you like to have, you know, a month or so to kind of decompress and prepare. What goes to your mind with that? Yeah, I try to. I try to get my team done pretty early. You know, we we like I said, we recruit during the season and, you know, we get out there and we see players and we do our networking and we like to spend the officers. I like to spend the offseason at home. I like to spend the offseason in my pool, on my floaty and just hanging out, you know, and hanging out with my kids and doing things with my kids and you know, because once the season starts it's you know, I'm with my players more than I'm with my family. So, you know, spending that time with them is great. We're going on vacation here coming up in a couple of days and it's I try to get things done that I can spend time with them. Well, I hope that you can get out to the floty for a few days he before vacation and enjoy the rest of the offseason. Yeah, thank you. Know, I'M gonna I'm definitely going to thanks again to Chris Serella for coming on the podcast this week. Always entertaining when I have well, actually, I have to say I'm his neighbor, not the OA where I almost said my neighbor on. No, I'm his neighbor, right, Jeff. Yeah, do have to get the awards show recording back up for you. That very quickly and probably about less than a minute and maybe thirty two seconds in that you are his dber. He's been there for years, long time, right. was there anyone more excited when they arrived at the hotel in Philadelphia? I probably not the most excited to be there. Most excited to get off the bus. The kids are probably real excited to, you know, get away from his his gaseous state that he may leaves on the bus. It was. It was a happy separation for all. Sure, they were all excited, though, right. Soh Yeah, but Chris the most will say. Yep, and a weird year for Chris and Mario and the ABS. Huh It was. It was a weird year. It was one of those years where, I guess I brought it up last week. I got to say it again this week. The North Division was the toughest. All right, we're saying it again for Christa here there, for the lumberjacks. We Sare for wolves. Were saying of the ABS have just parted. They were. They were so hot in the beginning of the year that, yeah, in a way you had to feel like they were maybe the favorites of the time to win the regular season championship. Well, they're with their past. To you know, I mean first two years you won the cup. Third Year you were looking like we're going to go to the frozen finals. COVID unfortunately canceled it. So I mean, yeah, just look at that. I mean they have not had a bad team. Last year was their quote unquote, because you can't see us bad team. They were up at and let's like will say, we said it last week with the lamberjacks. will say it again this week, like if there was ever a playoff series that we needed, that we need to see that we didn't get to see, it was the two thousand and nineteen twenty battle for what have been what would have been a ticket to the finals, lamberjacks versus APPs, like that would have been the best series, because that was like you. I mean even Jim said it, Jim Muscle, like that was the best lumberjacks team he thinks he's ever had against the team that had won two in a row. So it's like is the is the new dog going to take over? Is it the old guy there's going to stick around and obviously unable to do that. Both teams found a way to get there this year. Obviously a very, very unique way for the avalanche to get there. Will hopefully not going to what never have to have an at large again. But you knew going into it, once they got their ticket, they weren't going to just show up and roll over. They were going to show up and make a statement. And and they almost made a very loud statement. They almost. They did, they did. I mean they got there, they got all the way there and I mean, I know we're going to talk about goalies at some point, but what a weekend, George, we all said, George, of Michael Byne have been the best goalie that whole weekend. You want to start from back to front this week, can we? The goalies are kind of exciting with this team, and I always say it every year, but how are they only been around for four years? Doesn't feel like they've been around for forty years. Yeah, Chris makes it feel like that, right, Chris, Cinema Ario. So what what makes it tough, right is...

...you just mentioned George McMichael. There's a he was there one hot second, Hot Flash, and the EHLP for a year. EHL for a year voting college. Right. Goodbye. Thank you. Thank you for your time. I'm about he's not that. I don't think he's the best goalie and avalanche history. He's not. I don't think so. I think Nathan pick it is. I think Nathan pick it is as well, but one that he had when they when he led them to their second title. Right. Remembers our last providence appearance. Remember the stats I gave you and you are like are these accurate? I was like, yes, those are. So you're about to read those out loud and they are accurate. You like, I don't want to sound like an idios, like no, these are a hundred percent accurate. Yeah, it's like, are you reading from like NHL? What was it two thousand and nineteen that we were in? It sounded like video game stats. It did not sound real. They went a perfect six and oh that postseason, right. They took care of business and a pair of playoffs series, or their one playoff series, and then went on to the frozen falls one. All four games. They're a perfect six and oh with a one seven goals against average and then five eight save percentage and a couple of shot outs to like and and honestly, his worst game of that postseason was the championship game. Remember, it was him versus the goalie of the year, Brennan Brawley, and I the end of the first period we're like it's too too and each team had like eight shots, like what is going on? That's when the flyer that another team with the wagon of goalies that you're they browy, and then mclarnen, who pitched a goose egg. Is the backup that year was eighteen and no. So it was goalies everywhere. And Yeah, but see, that was the thing about that. I have see him to the pick. It carried them for, you know, the entire playoffs and during the year, and then the team picked him up in the championship game. Now he didn't play bad, but he said his worst game of that playoff. So I think we're going to do this. There's twelve. Bay has to be just twelve goalies to have played a game for the avalanche. Ess Right, and we're gonna they do blast through them, but they end up finding someone. Like the first couple weeks it's always like the revolving door, like this guy, nope, next, this guy next, and then I'll send Bam. So let's let's put Nick Michael and pick it right, and then lady, and then that gives us time to come back to pag Luca and Sworgio, who was the duo that led him to their first championship. Right, you got Matt Lane. Well, Verisso was a multiple year goalie for them and then Matt Lane was caught. I feel like Matt Lane Played The two thousand and nineteen twenty season and then came back with an alter ego and Nathan pick it the following year. Hey, literally with the same exact person. They were so common that and made every single safe. Well, let's start with McMichael and pick it. Okay, then we'll get we'll come back to it. Let's do it. Well, I gotta put pick it first. Heaven. Having the utility is important for this, because I think it's gonna have to go goalie. But as we're going to get to the other spots to they've had a lot of really good forward and defense. When to I already pretty much filled up the six defense pretty quickly. I rip. There was like Oh, boom, boom, boom, sons, sonsa, and we don't have to worry about coach right, because there's only been one coach, because you imagine, we didn't pick them though. Now, if it's coach team Italy, Mario Martin. Yeah, hello, chrystal. Catch you. Let's go to forwards next, all right, and leading score from New Hampshire, toughest nails, Tim Cronin. Tim Cronan, I he have to be on this list. Yes, criple digits in his career and like four games hunder something points. I forgot he's put up that many points because they are not usually a team that has those guys that put up buck is of points besides him. And then another guy that I know will get to after him the or in the in the four years of the avalanche, whenever someone says to me, like who were the scorers in team history, there's only two names that ever come to mind, wiggle kerb rat and Jake my man. Those are the only two guys that ever like, whenever I think of like scores for the avalanche, those are the two guys. Will's first name is Michael. Right then we established that. I think. I think it's real first name as Michael. Let's say. That's a quick story time. From what I thought he was from. What I think? I I thought he was from like the Zech Republic, and pretty just like yeah, he's from California. He could be more California. It was like live on one of our podcast episodes, Yash, last year, two years, I think. I think. I think you're right. I thought he was from the check wiggl Kurb Brat. I mean, look at that. Doesn't sound like a you know, a name from California. But when, when you're kid, when you change his first Hando what it actually is? Not His nickname or Michael. There we go now it's you from California, broke yes. So, speaking of tough ass nails, Chris Arnts, Oh, I was gonna say he has to be a top three Tammy. We love you, we're going to miss you. Next year his we don't, don't, we don't swear off and on this podcast,...

...and I've determined that this is not a swear. Chris Aaron's was a gigantic pain in the ass for everybody likes you. He would stand in front of the net and you'd be like, if you were a defensemen, you'd be like like, what are you doing here? Your get out of tiny compared to me right. Chris arrands is five foot nine, but he would put. You would plant both of his feet and he would not. You couldn't move him. It's like a cinder block and like he scored. I think we had this story on this podcast to the third goal in that championship game against the little flyers. I will always remember because he was the one in front that actually tipped Menda Zune shot in and men do zoo is celebrating at center ice, Aaron's a celebrating in the corner and the other four, other three players, are like where do we go? Or scored the goal and Chris, Aaron Turmer, I said on this podcast, came out and said I was my goal. Of course. MENA zoone says there's no way, but he just he had seventy three points himself in ninety six games. will point out the PIMS. You'll to point out the PIMS. One always the pimps. But he he was tough. We won't reveal all the injuries that he was dealing with in the playoffs, but I saw the pictures. Say this past year, we know, we just to save me and his dad at the bar and they said his ankle was like hanging on a thread. Basically he was like, you know what, I'll suck it up. He was the captain. He embodied the word captain. Would do it like he could put up points, but then he did all the other things behind the scenes that if you looked at a block score you wouldn't see. He led from the top. He went the locker room, the guys listen to him and it's I like it too, because it's one of those guys, like we said, smaller and stature, not a huge guy, but it shows you don't have to be, you know, Zadano chars size to be an Apton. You can be a smaller guy like him and still, you know, put yourself, put your name, put your body and develop a reputation. And Christeph we had a very good reputation in this league. If you were an Abas Fan and one of those teams, are one of those players that you hate if he's done on your team, kind of like Brad Martian. Speaking of captains and leaders, let's just keep going down this list. Right Jared sleear was a leader on that first championship team. Actually followed Chris on his path from Hartford to New Hampshire, which I know is not eh LP to ehl put there was a core that we're on the wolf pack with at the Wilfterrell and the air and then came up to New Hampshire when he out of the team, and then obviously sleear I moved on to Plymouth stay from there. But he was excellent that first postseason. Six points in six games, I think almost all six of those points were in the frozen finals too. So it did an interview with them after on the ice to after the game. That was we were still figuring out our format and got it to what it is now and I was interviewing guys in the ice. Cheers leears one of them. I found that I might fold the other. There you go. So that's five Ford's just like that. I told You I knew this. Togo to Philip fast, which you get the d they'll be six and six seconds. Still some more good name. I mean so I was looking. Obviously, so you got four years right. You got to look at we picked a lot of guys in the beginning years from this past season. Not a lot of point in skidders. But Manichenko was someone that a lot of people he led the team and he was someone that, you know, a lot of the parents spoke really highly of. Also, I can't believe Chris and Mario Love the American guys. Mat Chenko's like the only overseas guy I think I see on their entire like top pointsless. Yeah, I think he. I forget he was somewhere prior to when he joined the avalanche. I think it was MCDC and then he can to the avalanche quick two thousand, one thousand nine hundred and twenty, and then this lap past year was his first full year. So you know, in six in sixty eight games, he had fifty nine points. You wonder if he had done two full years, where would he be at? I don't know if he'd be as high as Tim Cronin because Cronin had three years of games that he played, but you never know. I mean he was crafty. He's going to Manhattanville. He he was part of the All star lists that we put out this past year because we couldn't have an all sart event. Two Thousand and twenty. Weird, you weird. Hear every did it. Never forget good right, but I thought he was a good one here from this year's see, they didn't have a ton of guys that stood out to you on paper that like jumped off, but he was definitely, I'd say, one of them. So Yep, are put them on the board. I'M gonna go back towards the jared's lear time again a little bit. When Nick Rip Mo was on the ice. Oh Yeah, you had to know where he was. So he wasn't another kid that went to mean or one of the main the University of Southern Maine, the other mean. Yeah, he when he st went to hit you, he was trying to put you through the...

...glass like that, but shoulder, the shoulder right, like he his hits were clean right and send you from New Hampshire to me when you get you for a cross state state lines. I think. I think the most common call he got was probably charging because of this stribes that he took into a hit. But he wasn't the type of kid that was, you know, aiming for the head or anything like that. And I always remember this one game he missed on a hit. He was trying to hit the kids so hard and he actually hurt himself and Chris was like Rip Moo, like Nick, I need you if you slow down a little bit, you may make some acts, a little contact not hurt yourself. I can see Chris Like bodying him up for coaching on the bench to like staying like all right, so you don't your hit good, but you know I need you in the cave, like abusing the hands of everything, like my buddy. We can't lose you for a bit of time. Come on. He was fun, though. I mean like he I remember him too, like it if, even if he was a scratch for a game and he had the best time on the scorers box. Yep, and there was a defestman that sometimes we with him in the score respons for going to get to him. That hadn't even better time. So Wat, but quickly we're at seven, four. It's just like that. Look at this. So it's kind of now what time frame will be looking for from here, because that's what we're doing with these four year teams. Right. You're kind of like, oh, we don't to go way back, don't go way forward. It's kind of like they're all all mixtd. The next wave of forwards, to me, is all the same. Yeah, they all put up around forty points or so over it. So we put Akins up there, yet we put at cans up there. Yes, I can, this is good. Okay. We got the four, we got the top five scores and then we jumped down to the eighth all time and we jumped all the way down to the sixteen all time. So I think for Cole Arschambau, what stands out to me about his time with the ABS is over a two year period he played in sixty seven games. But they're also was some time miss. They're due to injury. We're kind of like, not a Schenko what would have been if he had had the full, you know, two years. Spent two years in the NA three prior to that. So so really worked his way to where he is now at Fitchburg State, unable to play any games this past year, but part of that crew of of I guess you called them sophomores. Now they get to play their first college game this upcoming season and we're going to see him when team the HL faces Fitzberg state in October. Excellent. I told Lady, I told Vicky there day at the All Star Week is right around the corner and she said no, it's not. That's like I was like before you know, it will be the middle of October. I'm just don't give don't give her the cheeks just yet. So see joining summer. It's only July. Yes, he goes, do you want golf season? And I go fair, play, fair, point. He knows you well, she knows it makes you tick. They are gonna do I get another good one to Neil. Okay, there. How about Victor Nikaphorov? Yes, Guy, funniest story with Nika for there we go with the last time we face the college teams was in two thousand nineteen twenty and he was part of years ago two thousand nineteen twenty. He was part of that team that went one, one and one, and we took a bus to Fitzburg state one day, we took a bus to Salem state the next day and obviously drove ourselves. Everyone left from Ms Boston the first night. After getting off the bus. You know, Daddy Day Care, on Daddy Day babysitting, I have to go to stand the bus and see what's there and I find I count it, I find two sticks, like go to his room and he opens the door and goes, oh, I'll probably need those tomorrow, like that's the response. Oh, not like, Oh, I've been looking for these is like, Oh, yeah, my sticks. I mean like you walk inside the hotel with your hockey bag and everybody else had their hockey bag and all their sticks have you didn't have anything in your hands. Yeah, it was going to potstive from the Sunni school that we love. You didn't once think to yourself, Hey, where am I to two hundred and fifty dollar sticks, like see, you know expensive these sticks are nowadays? Yeah, these guys, they're they're an interesting greed, all them for all very different, different shape sizes. Keeping with the the theme of talented scores just one season. So he shows up further down on that list because, again, what if there were multiple years? There, CAL Leclaire son, I was mention of John mcclaire and I'm John Leclaire. We got to meet at Schneider Arena. Huge, huge chance. That guy. Yes,...

Jesus Christ, watch them as a kid and then seeing him in person was like wow, he's freaking medicine, just a smooth four hundred six for gold, uhole total in the end of the shell. Actually remember that championship game was avalanche versus the little loose or the revolutions and an alumni of the of the revolution was not on the team, but Caden Primos Dad Pretty showed up at that game and I remember talking to right and Keith and John were standing directly across from each other, opposite. You were. I can see it now. You were a jet flyers, I want to say, lie may mates at some point, not even just that, teammates. You were lie mates and he put the puck on your stick, like Caden's not even here. Kids not even be playing for the revolution, but they wouldn't speak to each other. Yeah, there's got to be some stories. Well, I think what's episode to come through it. I think it was just the Revolution Avalanche, just we like both like to see both teams win. But yeah, I was I remember looking down and I think I actually hit you as like we have two NHL ours standing, yeah, directly across from each other. Yep, I remember. I could see. I can see John Leaning over the bars, just sitting there. You stand in the whole time. Didn't sit. And then I can see Keith, yeah, like you said, in the corner to our right with the northeastern three quartersip on rooting for the Huskies, for Katan as he was moving on. And then, yeah, just see them both sitting there and you're like, what the heck is going on? And cals a very good player. Yeah, he's in in a y AH shell time. Obviously just the one season, but forty four games and forty four points. That's east, that's easy. Maxie Mass, one point per game and as already spent two seasons at tops under Pat Norton. So gearing up for I think what's going to be called his senior year, because last season they weren't able to play. It's tough to follow that. That's be tough to fall. But speaking of college players, and I mentioned to Chris before we did the all time lineup that being Jewish, it's not the only reason why I'm putting Cam Whitzman on this love cheese, but km was the Kim look. I am Yes, he was the leading score for albertas madness and their very first season at division three. So that was the twenty nine, pretty good twenty season. He went in and had eighteen points in twenty four games. Yep, as a freshman right, that's big. So so, as a fresher you're fighting for ice time half the time, let alone be the leader and points. Yeah, so he was on that two thousand and eighteen nineteen avalanche team with Leclaire. Put Up thirty one points and thirty nine games of his own, and then now is gearing up for his third season at Alberta's madness. Only got to play two games this past year, but in talking with Kyle Walack, I saw kyle this past week. Kyle, the schedule that they have is pretty impressive and I think there's big things coming for Weisman in his third year. So maybe maybe you see a double or two times in production, if you will. It's calling it now. Lock it up, ter bits and we will put Cam Whitesman next. And that gets us down to one more forward. I got a couple of possibilities. I got to throw both of these guys off of you. So can we talk about to it once? We can talk about two guys once, right, give me us a little bit of time. I'm between Ryan Malco, who was very interesting player this past year that kind of went through ups and downs. He put a lot of pucks in the back of the net, though, and his times, an Abo and Derek Brittener. What do you think of those two? To battle it up the last forward and it's funny because there's other names here to like Kylie Anderson, maybe tyler, your bitch, your is left for it's a bally tough. It's really tough. I think what stands out to me about Brittaner at the time when they won the two thousand and seventeen eighteen ehl championship, he became the first player in league history to win two titles with two different teams. Really, yes, because he had won one arcs and then one two thousand and fifteen sixteen with the monarchs. Yeah, an he won two thousand and seventeen eighteen with the avalanche. So I think with that little accolade get the extra as you see, to ehl champions here. You know page. I think we give him the nudge, but I acknowledge that there are players out there like a Connor Leach, Devin Pepe Zach a whole on tyler, you're Itch, Ryan, Malco, Kyle Anderson, Matt, Matt Canyon. He...

...was awesome in this league. Yeah, that we just can't fill in. Well, maybe we still have the utility, but we don't know what we're doing that utility yet. We're wondering if it might be goaltender or could be dtwo. Once we get to these DNO, too, you start ripping through this a lot. There could be more than six. So for D do we go with the fan favorite first or the lock leading defensive scorer first? Oh No, we're doing are we going to do like a one, two, three? Who's the fan favorite? We're gonna do the fan favorite. Easy, the fans parents, easy. Crawlis all he was like. Second, Fan favorite, this do? He was like. Third, look, I'm over to do strikes. WHO LIKE PRIS? Yes, for there go like Oh to don't got up to bat. Bam. They was no one more entertaining than Aj Persowski Cristoski up like he if he wasn't playing in the game, he was potentially driving the Zamboni, and then if he was having the Zamboni, he was waving to me as he passed at center ice every time. Hey, Neil, two more laps, three more laps, like just having the best time. He did the PA for number of games right, and I had the tauch him because he would whisper for the away team and he would just scream for the home team, and I was like yeah, like a little gazeman ship. Oh Yeah, Chris and Barrio too would roll their eyes to look over like up. All right, there we go. And he aj was one of those players, like a jared sleeer, that spent time with Chris in Hartford and then followed him up to the avalanche. And I remember when he committed, Chris was like I love Aj, but it's time for AJ to move on. That's like what you know what ages said the same thing. I love Chris, but it's time for me to move away from Chris. Yes, I think they are both ready for a break. It's almost like a break. Happen Right, happens. But but the other names that you mentioned, the Jake Mendozoa, spent two years with the avalanche, put up sixty points in his time nixt crows, half OAR deven. Well, yes, said there, because its rawls who won the two thousand and eighteen nineteen defenseman of the year. I'll tell you what an awesome foot race on skates I mean. When I say foot race, would be say in the booth. would be next crawls versus Corey Donyh right beat on speed. I like they were kind of the same style defenceman, hmm, where they played solid defensively, they would. They would bump into you, for sure, but when they add a chance to rush, you looked and then all of a sudden they are by you. Yep, absolutely so. I think that would be one heck of a race. Yeah, for sure. And that is half of our dcort just like they're good. Still got a lot of good more. What more good names on there? Let's see. Who else can we throw up there next? You have anyone the pop so off to you right away. They're new. I was going to say we's that easy ones. Yes, there we have names that we can say we will tepiled. Colin Tracy and Kyler harding both went off to Puma state. Ethan Clark had a solid year there. Should all big seventeen past year. Even Clark's going to Potsdam or is at parts past and I should say hall big is going to Fitchburg. Jake ETA only had one season. He was good, but he was really good and he scored twice for us against Fitzburg state. I want to say with that Allstar team, who that might have to get you on the might have to get you on the list. Scored twice against the college guys before. You were college guy. Yes, and like the two time ehl champion. He was on that two thousand and nineteen twenty team. And like, what does a tilting guy to before he came here? Your rings and goings at tops now and, like I just again, another one of those players that makes me wonder what that playoff series would have been like between the avalanche and lumberjacks, for sure, because it would have been so good. HMM, that gives us some way. We could give us for so far. That's for you'd mentioned a couple other ones. I gottas quick I got a quick story here. Okay, we're not going to put Cam Barber Gallo on this list, but I'll never forget the time he scored three goals and one shootout. For me, that was awesome, like I remember, in three different moves also. Yep. So you know the other names that I haven't mentioned yet. There was James Zenka, who was part of that only one thousand, sevent hundred and eighteen team that helped them win that first title. Yeah, that's Queeney. Was was rock saw. Another one of those guys that Chris will bring in. A player that's not that big, but he's just effective. Right pass quedy's...

...not a big defenseman, but he took care of what he needed to take care of and and there weren't many goals scored when he was on the ice. I'll tell you that much. Yeah, he was another good yeah, five seven, one hundred and fifty four. Wow, he was tiny. Yeah, I think I want to put I think I want to Go James Zanka and Colin Tracy. All right, I like to think, but I'm I'm stuck. I just I'm torn because there's so we're gonna leave somebody off and we're going to hear about it. Yeah, well, I'm every week we pretty much Gott into Justin Scutiri text and US after Walpole like hey, we're not perfect. Is Why they put a racist on pencils and a lot of these teams it's a credit to them. There's a lot of guys. You could most of these teams. You could probably make two of these different lineup sheets. Yes, I would say twelve, six to with the utility, I would agree. I would agree, and we're acknowledging that there's players that are not part of this forward core or defensive core. Right. That's what I do. Like honorable mention Zolst, she'd talking. We throw their name out just to give a little blurbs and then we see if we can fit them on the list. It's all YEP, and I think I have our utility. And I don't think it's Matt Goalie. Oh, it's going to be a goaltender. I think it's going to be a defenseman. Okay, and I think it's going to be a defenseman because we don't know where the what the future holds for him. I think he has a division one possible, like pipeline possibility, but it's going to take some time to get there. And I think he has a connection to the avalanche owner as well. And that's not why we're choosing Robert. It's not why we're choosing Robert Martinello, but he's tendered with Corpus Christie, right, and it's raise the DNA. Yeah, so moving up, there's a chance he sticks there. Could he end up back with the ABS? Yes, but I think that the sky is the limit for him and to do it. He did it seventeen. He was seventeen years old this year, like and Andy Moore comes in and like it's tough for a defenseman when rookie of the year, when you have that way you're going against. But he was. He was legit seventeen, but he didn't look seventeen on the ice. You know what I mean, right it so harry him sizewise, six one hundred and ninety. That's good size for seventeen year old kid. They'll grow into his body. He'll gain at least probably another ten fifteen pounds, you know, once he starts being able to develop. I mean he's just hitting that point where he's turning from a boy into a man. So you're going to start rolling, buddy, you're gonna start putting on the muscle, drink those protein shakes. But yeah, he was very impressive and stature very impressive to skill sit on the least this past year for the APPS. Yep. So that will round out our avalanche unit and it's a good one, as we always say. He put it up against any team that we've put together so far, and they've done so with just four years of history. So I think next week we're going to have the PROTEC junior ducks on which were not going to have an all time line up from just one season. So we'll get back to the all time lineups the week and, oh the week after that. So we'll talk to you, Jeff, in two weeks. Sounds good. Neal, well, I'll talk to you before that podcast. I'll see. Thanks for listening to the show. Learn more at Eastern Hockey League Dot Org and follow us on Facebook, twitter, instagram and Youtube. Also, be sure to subscribe and get notified when next week's PODCAST is released.

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