October 12, 2012

Pirates reflect Phoenix philosophy

Portland, which opens the season Saturday, will feature players picked to play a defensive style.

By Paul Betit pbetit@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

2012 NHL Entry Draft - Rounds 2-7
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Don Maloney and Dave Tippett of the Phoenix Coyotes discuss matters during Round One of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft at Consol Energy Center on June 22 in Pittsburgh, Pa.

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Don Maloney
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Phoenix GM Don Maloney says he has “put a premium on character and competitiveness” in his search for players since taking over the club four years ago “because we don’t have the wherewithal to pay high-end skilled players right now.”

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COMING UP FOR PIRATES

Season opener: Saturday at Adirondack, 7 p.m.

Home opener in Lewiston: Friday, Oct. 19 vs. Worcester, 7 p.m.

Home opener in Portland: Friday, Nov. 2 vs. St. John's, 7 p.m.

PIRATES ROSTER

FORWARDS: Scott Arnold, Evan Bloodoff, Alexandre Bolduc, Darian Dziurzynski, Chris Brown, Chris Conner, Brett Hextall, Rob Klinkhammer, Phil Lane, Jordan Martinook, Andy Miele, Joel Rechlicz, Brendan Shinnimin, Jordan Szwarz, Ethan Werek

DEFENSEMEN: Mathieu Brodeur, Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Maxim Goncharov, Brandon Gormley, Mark Louis, David Rundblad, Michael Stone, Chris Summers

GOALIES: Chad Johnson, Mark Visentin

 

"In Portland last year, I really thought their goaltending let them down," Maloney said. "I hate to blame one position, but you have to be good in that position, and they weren't good enough."

Because of the lockout, Oliver Ekman-Larsson, a young Swedish defenseman who has spent the last 1½ seasons in the NHL with the Coyotes, will start the season with the Pirates.

Defensemen Michael Stone, Chris Summers and David Rundblad also spent a lot of time in the NHL last season.

At the outset, offense could be a problem for the Pirates.

The forward lines include 11 players in either their first or second season of professional hockey.

"We think we've hit on the right ratio of character, chemistry and skill," Maloney said. "You know, you're always adjusting your formula. Maybe, right now, we've got character and chemistry and we need to find a little more skill." 

NOTES: Veteran forward Alexandre Bolduc has been named the 15th captain in team history. Forwards Andy Miele and Jordan Szwarz and defensemen Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Chris Summers will serve as assistant captains. ... The Pirates traveled by bus to Glens Falls. ... Phoenix Coyotes assistant coach Jim Playfair, who works primarily with the defensemen, is spending a week with the Pirates. ... A lower-body injury is expected to keep rookie center Jordan Martinook out of the lineup for two to three weeks. 

Staff Writer Paul Betit can be contacted at 791-6424 or at:

pbetit@pressherald.com

Twitter: PaulBetitPPH

 

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