Monday, August 9, 2010

Shockers Season is Done

This marks the end of another Shockers' season which ends up being one of the most disappointing ones yet as the Shockers failed to make the playoffs for the first time in team history.

The Shockers will be left along way side as the playoffs kick off shortly.

There has be no word from team management that there will be another version of the Shockers for the fall season.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Brown Rocket Has Been Grounded

The Shockers were riding a high from their convincing 7-1 victory this past Tuesday until they received word from team doctors earlier today that Jeff "The Brown Rocket" Jasmin will most likely be missing the rest of the season with what could be as worse as a career-ending knee injury.

"They said it looks broken as fuck, I don't know what to do with myself," Jasmin slurred in a drunken rage.

Since Jasmin learned about the injury he has been hitting the bottle hard than former Shocker Greg Emmanuel in his first season with the team (reference stories of vomiting and extremely clubbing and question acts of gay sex).

"It is unfortunate for us. Jeff is a hard worker and his team spirit will be missed out on the surface," commented captain, Danny Balenzano.

Jasmin ends his season with no points in five games.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Shockers Sink Below 500 Hockey

Probably one of the better looking rosters on paper in recent history for the Shockers is struggling to stay afloat in the standings and as the season progresses they are looking more and more banged up. In the passed 3 games they have accrued 3 losses and have showed up with two lines or less and now are dealing with an injury list that is accumulating some big names which is getting the organization worried.

For one, defensive backbone Gary McDermott is playing at 50% due to a knee injury he suffer in a friendly game last Monday and has been toughing through the games with a brace on. Then the big news hit home when Francois Boucher announced that he is most likely out for the season due to season-ending surgery he underwent last week.

"When he told us that he may not be coming back for the season, that really hurt since our line was doing pretty well with him," commented captain Danny Balenzano.

The Shockers are shopping around in the prospect pool but have not confirmed when they have settled on a candidate to replace Boucher.

"We're evaluating our options and hopefully we'll have someone in the line-up soon," added Balenzano.

The Shockers will have to regroup over this next week as they have the week off to recoop. Next game is against the third placed Hornets at 9:30pm @ Martin Brodeur arena where the Shockers will look to turn the tables on their recent skid of losses.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Putting a Stripe Down the Back of Les A's

Final Score
Shockers 3
Les A's 2

After losing the season opener by a mere score of 2-0 against a team that went all the way to the finals during the winter season, the Shockers looked to turn things around for game 2 of the summer season.

Shockers, without the big freight train Jeff Jasmin, had to find a solution to their lack of production from game one and fill in a significant void in the backfield. However, making his season debut was Ben Ducharme as he missed the first game for person affairs.

The ball dropped to start the game and the Shockers found the scoring touch early in the game when Tom Derisseau lit the lamp with a howitzer that beat the opposing goaltender roof-daddy, over the shoulder. Soon after, Danny Ballanzano rifled one passed the A's netminder to go up 2-0, his first of the season.

Les A's battled back and popped one past Giancarlo Capaz on the powerplay to come within one, but the Shockers replied with Frank Derisseau chucking the ball past the masked mass of goalie equipment.

But Les A's, not to be outdone, clicked together and chipped another one home to bring the game back to within one.

The Shockers who were running into some penalty trouble kept playing with more fire when Carlo Varano, as the last man back, got pick-pocketed and Les A's forward went on a break away. Ballanzano, luckily, hopped on his horse and managed to short-side the forward and Capaz made the all-important save to conserve the lead.

The Shockers walked away fairly lucky with that win as they were unable to measure up to Les A's last summer, but Francois Hamelin explains what was the difference maker is this time around: "We're a new team and we have a full roster who WANT to play hockey and are not just here to look good in our new shirts. We've got new faces and the new blood in the team in a big refresher."

Speaking of blood, the Shockers got a scare at the end of the third period when a slight skirmish on the surface resulted in Gab Maltais getting high-sticked to the mug; there was no call on the matter despite Maltais bleeding from above the right eye. He is not expected to miss any games due to that injury.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Shockers Shutout in Season Opener

Final Score
Hellas 2
Shockers 0

There was no shame in the Shockers performance this past Tuesday for their season opener despite the 2-0 loss. The Shockers were not out-worked or out-played they were simply out-scored by their opponent who took advantage of two errors when the Shockers failed to play man-to-man coverage.

"We got sucked into the ball. If all of our players run to theball, there are going to be open men in front of the net," commented Andrew Stevens.

Giancarlo Capaz sparkled making all of but two necessary saves. On the other side of the rink, Hellas goaltender made it look easy by using his gigantic size to his advantage. "We made him look good. We shot right into his chest," explained captain, Danny Ballanzano.

Even though the Shockers' big guns were silenced, the chances were certainly there however, the handful of worthy opportunities were shutdown by the Hellas goaltender. "C'etait notre premier match ensemble, ca va venir, j'ai confiance dans les boys," elaborated newcomer, Gab Maltais.

The Shockers have a chance to redeem themselves tonight at Bill Durnam Arena at 8:30pm. The Shockers will be without the energetic Jeff Jasmin.

Friday, May 21, 2010

"This is Make it or Break it"

So what have the Shockers been up to since being ejected from the playoffs early once again?

"Rebuilding, rebuilding, rebuilding," explained GM, Francois Hamelin.

The Shockers' sad and short-lived stint in the playoffs was not only a kick in the pants for the club but a rude wake-up call for Hamelin that the patching-the-hole style of building the Shockers team every season is not cutting it after 4 or more failed attempts at advancing to the second round of the playoffs.

No one should be ready to lynch and burn Hamelin at the stake just yet. Since he has taken over the rebuilding process, the hockey Gods have only seen good things on paper and jurassic improvements in the line-up compared to any of his predecessors. This season is by far the biggest change to the team and definitely one of the strongest teams, on paper at least, that the Shockers have assembled thus far or at least since the Toohey-Towell era.

"I wanted new blood in the team. We seem to be a different team every year but always seems to be the same old results," explained Hamelin.

The new blood actually brings in some old names back in the mix like Rod "the Red Rocket" Tremblay who was an unfortunate scratch in the debut season on the Shockers due to a season-ending injury. Tremblay, now back to 100%, feels ready to compete again and has brought some firepower along with him. Two other members of Tremblay's former hockey team agreed to sign on with the Shockers for this season to round out his line. "We were missing experience and grinders in the past so adding these guys in the line-up is huge for us offensively," outlined Hamelin.

Hamelin, added the likes Gabriel Maltais, a brutus of a hockey player who has the eye for getting the ball in the net and is a force to be reckoned with in front of the net while Francois Boucher, Marc Boucher's brother, adds speed, moves, an accurate shot and an eye for the game, an all around package deal that will be a huge asset up front.

Carlo Varano will return to the Shockers but not without long time friend and former NABHL scoring leader Danny Ballanzano. Some may remember Ballanzano as the tall and empowering captain of the Blues and others will remember him as being the big body coming down the surface and lacing a rocket top shelf. Look for these two to make life a living hell for their opponents. On a side note, Ballanzano was granted the 'C' by GM Hamelin.

The only old faces on offense are Andrew Stevens and Ben Ducharme. Stevens and Ducharme both coming off of mediocre seasons were privileged to receive offers from the GM. They are keeping in shape in another cosom hockey league with Hamelin, Boucher and Boucher, Capaz and Alain Godard.

The defense got an uncharacteristic face-lift this season as some of the past players have moved on. "We needed to change things up and I think we found the best balance of offensive and defensive defensemen," explained Hamelin.

The defense will be graced with the reliability of Gary McDermott who is coming off a rather successful end of season. "Gary is going to be our powerplay gemstone. He has that hard and accurate shot that we need from the point. He put a few balls in the net last season but I'm convinced he can double or triple his production if he just shoots more," added Hamelin.

The D will also contain Hamelin, Boucher and Jeff Jasmin who are all projected to have great seasons. Hamelin, who has found his knack at scoring last season has given him more confidence to more of an offensive oriented enforcer. Boucher, has always had the shot and has been working on hitting the net during the off-season by downloading the accuracy app on his iPhone. Jasmin, as always, will be the giant who is literally everywhere on the surface and look for him to jump into the plays to make shit happen.

The new additions to the defensive end are Alain Godard and long time spare, Guillaume Cote. Godard, formerly a forward, will try his hand at defense this season and will look to add a bit of an offensive edge to the back-end as well as using his shot from the point. Godard came off of a disappointing fall campaign and hopes to bounce back in the points column and improve his game in his new role. As for Cote, he finally decided to sign on full-time this time as he was a fish that kept swimming away from the Shockers during signing time. "We're happy to finally land him and he will be a positive impact at any position he plays on the team," stated Hamelin.

In nets for the 5th consecutive season is Giancarlo Capaz. The bar is already set high for Capaz as he has played phenomenal throughout his ball hockey career but as Hamelin put it: "We just need him to continue to play the same as he always does and we'll be fine."

The Shockers commence their season Tuesday against Hellas. Hellas made it to the finals this past fall and are tagged to do the same amount of damage this upcoming season.

Vegas Predictions:
Season: 4th
Playoffs: Semi-finals

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Shocked in the First Round...Again!

So chalk it up for another season of disappointment for the Shockers as they were downed in the opening round of the playoffs by the Saints 5-1, Thursday night at the SportsXpo. Call it how you want to call it but the Shockers have never advanced past the first round of the playoffs in their entire 5 seasons of hockey.

The Saints didn't really come out strong or play any harder than the Shockers but goaltending saved the day for the Saints. "We had shots and rebounds but those lucky bounces didn't go our way," explained Andrew Stevens.

The Saints benefited from defensive breakdowns and the luxury of having that one open guy in front of the net. "It's impossible to save everything and when there is that one guy loose in front of me, it makes it harder," shuttered Giancarlo Capaz.

Another aspect that killed the momentum for the Shockers was the lack of activity on the powerplay. Just a whole lot of perimeter passes and shots, if not blocked by the Saints defense, that were easily seen by the goalie since there was no one crashing the net. "You know we make it a point in the dressing to always have someone in front of the net and come game time, no one is there. I don't know if our players are afraid of the ball or afraid of a little contact...who knows," Stevens mentioned.

With the Shockers season cut short once again, the talks of rebuilding for next season have surely started and the rumor mill is undoubtedly churning up a storm. The summer season will most likely have the Shockers back in Howie-Morenz arena in Parc Extension but the bigger question will be, who is on the team? For sure on a big surface such as Howie-Morenz, the Shockers must consider enough firepower to span across three lines and should really start to look for players who can put the ball in the net as this season was one of the most unproductive seasons the Shockers ever had. "It is embarrassing to see our stats and notice that we have one of the lowest goals-for in the league and then the fact that to PTM blog mentions that we haven't scored more than 2 goals in our last 9 or 10 games...that hurts," added Francois Hamelin.

Hamelin, who will most likely be at the reigns of the summer Shockers, will have a lot of big decisions to make. Who can he get to fill another line of offense that will be sure to score goals? With many of the defensemen of this season walking off the job in the middle of the games, will there be some firing, quitting or rediscussion with those players? If there are no changes to the gameplay of the Shockers defense, is Capaz at his wits-end enough to shop around to another team? Players like Andrew Stevens who held out until the start of the season to re-sign with the Shockers, will he come back? Either way, the journey to next season will be a bumpy road nonetheless.