If we won’t make the playoffs, I’ll go to Ottawa. March 12, 2008.
Things are not very smooth with my Binghamton in the AHL. We lose more than we win. We let in too many goals, play very unsuccessful defense. In the end we’re outside the playoffs for now, but still have a chance of making the final 16. We’re doing everything to make sure our season doesn’t end on April 13.
The mood is not the best after these losses. However, there’s no time at all to feel depressed, because we’re constantly on the road. The schedule is tough, lots of games. Today we finish one game, and have to think about the next opponent tomorrow. When we return home we’re given a day off, and then it’s back to practice, to playing. Like a conveyor belt. They don’t ride us too hard at practice, so that we have the strength for the games.
If in Russia they attempt to somehow modify the practice methods after bad games, not to mention bad series, then in the AHL it’s not like that. The only thing that changes for us is the configuration of the lines. On the other hand, even when we were winning we’d rarely ice the same lineup more than two games in a row.
If I were playing in Russia, they’d lock us up, of course, so that we would think really hard about our behavior. That’s one of the strongest motivational tools in our country, I know it from personal experience. But not in America, especially with this kind of schedule.
The coach calls meetings, we watch video, analyze plays. Everything comes out sounding good, but it doesn’t always play out on the ice the way it was conceived. There were games where we led 2-0, only to lose in the end. I just don’t know how to explain that. There’s no management coming into the locker room here. Nobody yells at us.
The quiet and monotonous life in our Binghamton gets a bit tiring, to be honest. It’s typical America: calm and satisfied. Rarely anything happens. In New York, where my girlfriend Natalya and I went, everything’s different. That city is full of life.
Here’s Natalya and I on Broadway, where we went to see the musical The Phantom of the Opera:
This is near Rockefeller Center:
And here we’re walking on Wall Street:
Recently Natalya flew back to Russia and now she’s returned. It would be very depressing without her. I really feel sorry for her when I have to go on the road. Natasha feels bored here. She might go to the movies or for a manicure.
But back to hockey. Surprising situations occur in some games. For instance, we outshot Albany almost two to one, but lost 6-2. Probably because our attacks weren’t concentrated. How dangerous is it for a goaltender when you shoot from the boards? It’s not. But for statistical purposes that’s a shot on goal.
There’s no word whatsoever from Ottawa. There was a coaching change there, but it didn’t influence the farm club. Nick Foligno gets called up regularly, but is just as regularly sent down. Honestly, I’m surprised by the change with the big club. They played well. Sure they had a decline, but everyone does.
I’m still not scoring very much. Right now I have 10 goals and 29 assists. That’s fourth best on the team. Of course, I must score more. But for some reason it’s not clicking.
Our regular season finishes on April 13 here, but I won’t return home right away. They’re saying that about five guys will go to Ottawa and train with the main team during the playoffs. In case anyone gets injured, to be there for replacement. So I continue to hope my chance will come.
But I’m thinking I have to finish this season, and next season I will be really contending for a spot on the Senators. I believe that.
Last edited by ThirtyFive: 03-14-2008 at 01:23 PM.