Milwaukee, WI – The Milwaukee Admirals lost 4-0 to the Grand Rapids Griffins on Friday, February 27 at the BMO Harris Bradley Center. The Admirals have matched up against the Griffins seven times this season allowing the Griffins to win four out of the seven. After Friday night’s game the Griffins keep the lead winning five of eight.
The Admirals came into Friday night’s game winning only the last two of six games, whereas the Griffins have won the last six of six. That wasn’t the only obstacle Milwaukee had to face leading into the game, but they also had significant movement in their line up as well.
It all started when Ryan Ellis from the Nashville Predators was injured and they assigned Anthony Bitetto to fill in. Mattias Ekholm got injured shortly after that allowing Bitetto to get more playing time in the NHL. After Milwaukee lost a defenseman they had no option but to have Mike Liambas play as a defenseman for two games.
The Admirals were short handed on defensemen starting back in January when Jimmy Oligny was injured on the 31st against the Griffins. Shortly after that Johan Alm was injured on December 6th against Oklahoma City making the Admirals extremely short handed defensively.
“We thought he (Alm) he was real good (tonight).” Head coach Dean Evason said when asked if he was impressed with Alm’s and Oligny’s performance. “Jimmy coming in from a really long time off was looking real good too. We will get better.”
Despite the challenges Milwaukee had against them on Friday, Evason headed into the game with a positive attitude.
“We thought we gathered our legs.” He said, “And we did. But just not to the extend that they did.”
The Admirals have seemed to have a difficult time not turning over the puck this season. One of their turn overs turned into a breakaway goal during the third period. Keeping possession of the puck and taking away the empty net goal that the Griffins scored, the Admirals would have only lost by one.
It seems to be a trend that Evanson tries to head into each game with a positive attitude.
“We talked Thursday after practice.” He said, “We had a good and upbeat practice. We worked together and it was a good feel. We talked after the game and we were playing individually in this game. After praising them previously about playing like a team, they came out didn’t play like that team that left practice.”
Let’s hope the Admirals can bring their practice team to the rink next time.
The Admirals play in Chicago on Sunday and in Cleveland on Wednesday but return to the BMO Harris Bradley Center on Friday, March 7th at 7:00pm.