We’re a month into the regular season and the Condors are set to embark on a four-game swing through the Central Division.
The schedule is about to ramp up for the team, which means no time for wasting, and as I’ll remind you, it’s my blog and I’ll do what I want.
Now for the blog…
– We’ll start with last night’s 4-3 loss up the 99. There was a lot to like about the Condors effort as they outshot their opponents for a seventh consecutive game. However, the Condors power play, which is third in the AHL, let them down at a crucial point in the second period. With the game tied at 2-2 and a chance on the man advantage just after the Heat scored, the Condors surrendered a shorthanded tally that ended up proving costly. Full marks to the Heat though for rebounding after being outscored 17-3 through seven periods and at one point last night, outshot 13-0.
– Caleb Jones has four points over his last two games. William Lagesson, who was sick for last night’s game, had two assists on Saturday. The D as a whole is starting to provide offense all while still being stingy defensively.
– What did we learn about this team after a month? Well, I think first and foremost is the quick adjustments to the pro game from rookies Cameron Hebig, Cooper Marody, and Tyler Benson. Hebig leads the team in scoring, Marody is in the NHL, and Benson has points in four straight. The preseason question of “is there enough offense on this team?” was answered in the opening seven games by the strong play of those three especially.
– Second, the overall team speed has been taken up a notch. The first period last night in particular was where this was on display. Heat d-men had very little time to move the puck, because as Tyler Vesel commented to me in the first intermission on the broadcast, the Condors goal is to be “relentless” in the offensive zone. Tracking back on pucks has been a hallmark of the early season and the Condors make teams work for every inch on the ice. That will pay off in the long run.
– Third, there is an identity being established. That comes from the coaching staff, but is instilled by the leadership corps of this team. It’s a work ethic that the group has bought into and is something that will stick regardless of outcomes.
– Some roster news: as Jay Woodcroft mentioned on the broadcast last night, Ethan Bear is close to returning to the lineup. That will be another key piece moving forward. No timeline yet for Al Montoya’s return to Condorstown after the birth of his third child over the weekend. Congrats to the Montoya family on the new addition! Al’s father-in-law golfed at the Condors Charity Golf Tournament last week and enjoyed his time on the links!
– Condors365 Members are invited to the Bank Room at 6 p.m. on Saturday for a Hockey Talk with myself and Edmonton Oilers Executive Vice President Stew MacDonald. Though he comes from the business side, he has plenty of insight on the hockey side and it’s great to have him here this weekend.
– The World War I themed military jerseys this Saturday are pretty slick. Proceeds from Condors jersey auctions have raised over $1.2 million all-time, which is an outstanding feat in and of itself. You can also pick up Ethan Bear youth jerseys (2 per ticket) for just $5 each.
🇺🇸SATURDAY 🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/EBLSlkCqex
— Bakersfield Condors (@Condors) November 1, 2018
– The blog heads to Iowa next week. It’s the third time in 2018 I’ll have ventured into Des Moines. Just a note that next Thursday’s game is an 8:30 a.m. Condorstown start so you have permission from me to either take a half day or enjoy Mimosas with Holty.
– LOCK OF THE WEEK? We’ll try and beat out Colin Cowherd’s Blazin’ 5. Entertainment purposes only.
NEW ENGLAND (-5.5) v Green Bay
NEW ORLEANS (Pk) v Los Angeles Rams
KANSAS CITY (-10) @ Cleveland
SEATTLE (Pk) v Los Angeles Chargers
WASHINGTON (-1) v Atlanta
Until next time Condorstown…
Ryan Holt aka Holty is the Voice of the Condors in his 8th season. He made this locks in about 2 minutes time, so don’t bet the house. Follow him on Twitter @CondorsHolty or shoot him an e-mail to RHolt@Bakersfieldcondors.com with questions, comments, or blog ideas.