As NHL training camps winded down this past week, AHL camps revved up with early arrivals, and then promptly waited for late stragglers from the NHL. After a week of camp, things are beginning to take shape in Springfield for the Falcons. Here's everything you need to know from the past seven days in Western Massachusetts.
As of Monday morning, 27 players remained on the Falcons roster after a major series of roster cuts to accommodate the additions of Louis Domingue and Matthias Plachta.
Earlier in the week, Henrik Samuelsson, Philip Samuelsson, Derek Smith and Jordan Szwarz were all sent down to Springfield.
Daniel Barczuk, Cody Ferriero, Jordan Heywood and Kale Kerbashian, all under tryout agreements, were released Monday. Defenseman Jeremie Fraser was released earlier in the week.
Blue-liner James Melindy and left winger Dan O'Donoghue were sent to ECHL affiliate Rapid City Rush.
Veteran defenseman Corey Potter was signed Saturday morning to a one-year, two-way contract after being released from his tryout contract at the NHL level with the Coyotes. Potter was part of the Calgary Flames organization last year, playing six games at the NHL level and 25 with the Adirondack Flames. He appeared in two of the Flames postseason games.
Falcons Go 1-1 In the Preseason
The Falcons played a home and home on Friday and Saturday against the Providence Bruins for their only two preseason games, winning the first at home 2-1. Lucas Lessio scored in the go-ahead goal in the third while Niklas Treutle put together an impressive 25-save performance.
Night two required a shootout, as the Falcons fell 3-2. Greg Carey had the only two goals for Springfield.
Springfield Has a Pair Inducted Into the AHL Hall of Fame
The AHL announced its Hall of Fame Class of 2016, inducting four, two of which came through Springfield.
Bruce Landon, the current director of hockey operations for the Falcons, is entering his 39th season as an executive for the Falcons. He was instrumental in the creation of the Falcons organization following the Springfield Indians' departure for Worcester, Mass.
He was the President and General Manager of the Falcons from their beginning in 1994 through 2014. He was the GM of the Springfield Indians for their back-to-back Calder Cup championships in 1990 and 1991. Each championship was won with a different affiliate (New York Islanders and Hartford Whalers, respectively).
The second inductee, Bruce Cline, was a part of the Springfield Indians organization for four years during one of the greatest runs in AHL history, when Springfield won the Calder Cup in 1960, 1961 and 1962.
In each of those years, Cline was among the league's top goal-scorers, and was a first team AHL All-Star in 1961, and a second team AHL All-Star in 1963. He retired with 321 goals and 452 assists over 823 regular season AHL games. He also tallied eight 20-goal seasons over his career as well as 89 games and 58 points in the Calder Cup playoffs.
The Falcons season opener will take place Saturday, at home, against the Hershey Bears. In the meantime, expect a few roster changes to take place in both the NHL and AHL (even ECHL) levels as the Coyotes roster continues to take shape.