Utica Comets Post-Game

Game #19

Utica Comets at Laval Rocket

Saturday, November 23rd, 2019

3:00 pm Eastern/12:00 noon Pacific


The 10-7-1-0 Utica Comets and the 11-6-3-0 Laval Rocket, (Montreal affiliate) got after it again today at 3:00 pm Eastern/12:00 noon Pacific. This was the second consecutive meeting between the two clubs as Laval took yesterday’s contest by a 6-4 score.

The Comets power play was clicking yesterday, going 3/7, while they gave up one power-play goal to Laval on six opportunities.

Francis Perron, Carter Camper, and Riley Barber each picked up three points in yesterday’s game, while Guillaume Brisebois, Jonah Gadjovich, Michael McCarron, and Jake Evans all grabbed a pair.

Zane McIntyre stopped 26 of 32 shots that he faced yesterday, while Cayden Primeau stopped 24 of 28.


Scratched Yesterday For Utica

  1. Olli Juolevi: LD – Lower-body injury, no timeframe. NHL deal.
  2. Seamus Malone: W/C – Upper-body injury, no timeframe. AHL deal.
  3. Mitch Eliot: RD – Healthy scratch. NHL deal.
  4. Richard Bachman: G – Healthy scratch. NHL deal.
  5. Stefan LeBlanc: LD – Healthy scratch. AHL deal.
  6. Dylan Blujus: RD – Healthy scratch. AHL deal.
  7. Tanner Sorenson: F – Healthy scratch. AHL deal.

Pre-Game Predictions From Twitter


Scratched Today For Utica

  1. Olli Juolevi: LD – Lower-body injury, no timeframe. NHL deal.
  2. Seamus Malone: W/C – Upper-body injury, no timeframe. AHL deal.
  3. Carter Bancks: W/C – Upper-body injury, no timeframe. AHL deal.
  4. Zane McIntyre: G – Healthy scratch. NHL deal.
  5. Dylan Blujus: RD – Healthy scratch. AHL deal.
  6. Stefan LeBlanc: LD – Healthy scratch. AHL deal.
  7. Tanner Sorenson: F – Healthy scratch. AHL deal.

Today’s Comets Lines

(First forward line/defence pair listed started the game. The remainder are listed in no particular order)

77 Nikolay Goldobin – 36 Wacey Hamilton (A) – 24 Reid Boucher (A)

27 Francis Perron – 9 Lukas Jasek – 18 Vincent Arseneau

95 Justin Bailey – 19 Carter Camper – 13 Kole Lind

21 Jonah Gadjovich – 14 Justin Taylor – 26 Dyson Stevenson

6 Ashton Sautner (A) – 5 Jalen Chatfield

55 Guillaume Brisebois – 25 Brogan Rafferty

4 Josh Teves – 52 Mitch Eliot

64 Mikey DiPietro

32 Richard Bachman (backing up)

First Period

The opening frame of this one did not have the pace or flow of yesterday’s game and the Comets would find themselves with a short bench early after Wacey Hamilton took a puck to the mumbles and sprung a leak. He was off to the room and did not return to the game.

We had some early back and forth before Jonah Gadjovich hit Dyson Stevenson with a clean pass but netminder Charlie Lindgren got a shoulder on the Stevenson offering. We would hear from both of Gadjovich and Stevenson before this period finished.

There were not a lot of shots early on in the period as that was the only one that we saw through the first five minutes of play.

Alexandre Alain was dinged for slashing and the Comets were off to the man advantage.

We saw Boucher, Goldobin, Bailey, Lind, and Rafferty kick things off and Boucher had a chance turned aside by Lindgren. Rafferty followed up with a feed to Bailey but the big man had the puck poked off of his stick.

The second unit of Jasek, Perron, Camper, Gadjovich, and Mitch Eliot took over. They were unable to make anything happen and the Comets came up empty with the extra man.

Vinny Arseneau tried his luck with a shot but it was blocked on the way to the net. Gustav Olofsson went the other way with a point shot through traffic that was turned aside by Mikey DiPietro. Laval started to press but could not make anything happen.

Jake Evans let fly with a shot from the left circle that DiPietro stopped and smothered for a whistle. Ryan Poehling and Riley Barber soon found themselves on an odd-man rush and DiPietro came up with another big save.

That was when Dyson Stevenson and Michael Pezzetta decided to throw down and we saw Stevenson beat the taste out of Pezzetta’s mouth.

That was a solid tilt from Stevenson.

Kevin Lynch came looking for a goal off the right side but his shot was swallowed up by DiPietro for another save. Jonah Gadjovich followed up with a physical play to force a turnover and he was soon celebrating his third goal of the season.

Kole Lind fired the pass and it went in off of Gadjovich’s skate. The play was reviewed and it was decided to be a good goal. Lind grabbed his 10th helper of the year on the play, while Carter Camper picked up his seventh.

DiPietro followed up that play with back-to-back saves to keep his team up by a goal before Josh Teves came up with a big shot block. The Rocket kept it coming as DiPietro had to kick aside a McCarron offering as well as a Matthew Peca wraparound chance.

At the other end, Rafferty had a chance denied from the left circle before Goldobin was sent off for elbowing at the 19:38 mark.

The Comets finished the period down a man. We saw Camper and Bailey come out along with Chatfield and Sautner. Bailey and Camper broke in for a shorthanded chance but Lindgren was there with the save.

The period finished with the Rocket showing an 11-6 edge in shots.

Your first-period shot map:

Second Period

The middle frame saw more action as the teams would be knotted at two when the buzzer sounded to end the period.

The Comets still had the Goldobin penalty to kill off and we saw Carter Camper getting another look while down a man. Jalen Chatfield came up with a couple of clears and we saw great hustle from Bailey and Camper. The Comets came up with a good kill.

Mikey DiPietro made a few big saves in this game and he was sharp on a shot that was tipped his way through traffic. At the other end, Mitch Eliot had a shot of his own from the high slot that Lindgren was ready for.

This game also saw some heavy hits as Pezzetta crushed Goldy but the Comets playmaking winger popped back up and stayed in the game. Pezzetta, for his part, was sent off for interference and the Comets were off to the power play.

Goldy made Pezzetta feel shame when he tapped in a sweet feed from Carter Camper for his sixth goal of the season. Camper grabbed his eighth helper of the year on the play, while Kole Lind earned his 11th.

Mikey D followed up the Goldy goal with a stop before David Sklenicka picked up his first of the year to pull his team to within a goal. Matthew Peca picked up his sixth helper of the year on the play, while Gustav Olofsson earned his seventh.

Goldobin followed up that goal with a nice takeaway in the Comets end. Goldy has been playing a much more complete game over his last few contests.

Josh Teves let fly with a shot the was denied and Perron jumped on the rebound but Lindgren came up with a ridiculous save.

The Comets were applying the pressure but Lindgren was standing tall.

Gadjovich came looking for his second of the game when Lind teed up a one-timer for him but Lindgren swallowed his shot up. Goldy followed up with a cross-ice pass on a string to Sautner but nothing came of the play. Goldobin was slow back to the bench after that shift but he was back out for his next one.

Gadjovich showed a good stick to foil a breakout play before DiPietro kicked out an extra long leg to stymie Riley Barber. To all of the people who say Mikey D is “too small”… take that!

Ashton Sautner took a puck up high and stayed down for a few until the trainers came out. The rugged defender would be right back out for his next shift.

Brogan Rafferty has been having a very nice rookie campaign, but he still makes the occasional mistake, as he did when he coughed the puck up in the slot and DiPietro had to get a glove on the resulting shot for an alert save.

At the other end, Eliot had another shot kicked aside before Josh Brook went the other way with a pair of chances that DiPietro was ready for.

The play was going back and forth as Stevenson had his one-timer from in close denied before Riley Barber evened the game at two with his third of the season off the rush. Matthew Peca picked up his seventh assist of the year on the play, while Otto Leskinen grabbed his ninth.

We had some more back and forth as Joe Cox let fly with a shot from the point that was gloved down by DiPietro before Perron had a chance in close shut down at the other end. Ashton Sautner appeared to have scored on the followup play but after the officials reviewed the matter, they decided to wave the goal off.

There was more back and forth before Barber had a chance denied by DiPietro with a DemkoSpecial off of his mask. The saves kept coming as Chatfield foiled a chance by Peca before DiPietro kicked out a Riley Barber shot with a quick big toe. Lukas Vejdemo came with another shot off the left side that DiPietro steered aside before Karl Alzner put a point shot through traffic that DiPietro gloved down. The period finished with Jonah Gadjovich blowing up Nikita Jevpalovs.

The Rocket showed a 14-9 advantage on the shot clock for the middle frame.

Your second-period shot map:

Third Period

The two clubs came into the final frame knotted at two after the Comets gave up a two-goal lead. Would they be able to pull out a win? Well, you already know the answer to that if you’ve read the lede for this post-gamer.

We saw the Comets play the bulk of the first two periods short a man on the bench as Wacey Hamilton was clocked with a puck early on and couldn’t continue. They would have to finish the third period without the services of BigVinny as well as he was nowhere to be seen when the team came out for the final frame.

We had some early back and forth before Mitch Eliot put a shot off the leg of Lindgren. Laval followed up with some pressure and we saw Nikolay Goldobin step up with a second effort play to force another turnover. Goldy has been doing a lot more of that in his recent games.

The Comets were looking for a go-ahead goal when Jasek dished to Boucher for a shot that beat Lindgren but was swiped off the goalline by a Laval defender. At the other end, Sautner came up with a good play to poke the puck off McCarron’s stick as he was trying to beat DiPietro for a goal.

Mikey D wasn’t about to let Sautner do all the work as he gloved down the chance that followed. At the other end, Justin Bailey had a chance from a sharp angle that was kicked out by Lindgren as the Comets started to press.

Teves let fly with a shot off the left side that Lindgren got a shoulder on and the back and forth continued. The teams traded chances before Goldy put the good guys up 3-2 with his second of the game and seventh of the season. Mitch Eliot picked up his third helper of the year on the play, while Reid Boucher earned his sixth.

It was about this time when I had to do a radio hit on @TSN1040 with @andrewwadden and @JDylanBurke. I watched as Laval poured on the pressure and DiPietro crushed their dreams with a series of saves.

The Rocket coaching staff summoned Lindgren to the bench with just under two minutes remaining and the Comets had to stand tall to take the win. DiPietro kept the saves coming and Goldobin came up with a timely shot block before putting this one away with an empty-net goal for his hatty. He is now up to eight goals on the year, while Justin Bailey picked up his sixth helper of the season on the play.

That was it for this one as the Rocket finished with an 18-11 edge in shots for the final frame and a 43-26 edge for the game.

Your third-period shot map:

Today’s Official Boxscore

Today’s Comets Goals

  1. Jonah Gadjovich (3) from Kole Lind (10) and Carter Camper (7).
  2. Nikolay Goldobin (6) from Carter Camper (8) and Kole Lind (11). PP goal.
  3. Nikolay Goldobin (7) from Mitch Eliot (3) and Reid Boucher (6).
  4. Nikolay Goldobin (8) from Justin Bailey (6). Empty-net goal.

Special Teams

Power Play: 1/2.

Penalty Kill: 1/1

PP1: Goldobin, Lind, Boucher, Bailey, Rafferty.

PP2: Camper, Perron, Jasek, Gadjovich, Eliot.

Penalty Killers: Bailey, Camper, Jasek, Boucher, Teves, Brisebois, Sautner, Chatfield, Rafferty.

The Three Stars in the building today were:

3rd Star: Michael DiPietro. 41 saves.

2nd Star: Matthew Peca. Two assists.

1st Star: Nikolay Goldobin. Three goals.

CanucksArmy’s Three Stars:

3rd Star: Jonah Gadjovich/Carter Camper/Kole Lind. Okay, you’ve seen me cheat like this before, but I am grouping this trio together for the third star today. Gadjovich finished with a goal, while Camper had a pair of helpers, as did Lind.

Gadjovich now has four points in five games this year and has shown the hands to be an effective net-front presence. His hand/eye coordination is very good. He was also bringing a physical game and helped to force a couple of turnovers.

Lind grabbed another pair of assists and now has 14 points in 19 games this year. He had just 17 in his 51 game rookie campaign last year. Kole continues to play well and has shown an ability to get under his opponents’ skin while also providing high-end offensive contributions.

Carter Camper picked up a pair of helpers of his own today after finishing yesterday’s game with a goal and two helpers. He is now up to 10 points in 11 games and provides the team with a skilled, playmaking pivot. He did great work on the penalty kill today as well.

When I step back and take a look at this trio, it kinda makes me want to see what they could do as a line for a few games.

2nd Star: Mikey DiPietro. Mikey D finished this game with 41 saves and was a major contributor to this win. The rookie netminder is now 5-3-1-0 on the season and has posted a goals-against-average of 2.26 along with a save percentage of 0.923%. He has allowed more than two goals in a game just once this year and is playing the type of game that gives his team a chance to win every night. That will go a long way with the coaching staff.

1st Star: Nikolay Goldobin. Goldy piled up three goals today to bring his season totals to eight goals and 12 helpers, giving him 20 points in 18 games and has now wrestled the team lead away from Reid Boucher. The points are all well and good, but it has been Goldy’s play away from the puck in his most recent games that has impressed me more. He is forcing turnovers in the Comets’ favour and has been far more engaged in all three zones. If he can keep playing with that kind of passion, he will soon be putting his name at the top of the call-up list.

As an aside, Sven Baertschi will require waivers to get back to Utica if he is in Vancouver beyond December first. That might help Goldy in his bid for a call-up if the team still needs a body up top and doesn’t want to risk losing Sven to waivers this time around.

Next Game

Game #20

Syracuse Crunch at Utica Comets

Wednesday, November 27th, 2019

7:00 pm Eastern/4:00 pm Pacific