The Laval Rocket Breathe Life Into Their Calder Cup Playoff Hopes
The Laval Rocket did not necessarily have to beat the Cleveland Monsters on Friday to qualify for the Calder Cup playoffs, but a loss meant they’d be in tough to earn a playoff berth.
Following a disappointing 5-4 loss which saw the Rocket cough up a lead twice to Cleveland, things were looking rather dire.
The Rocket only had four games remaining in the season, including two matchups versus the Syracuse Crunch, a team that qualified for the playoffs with ease.
Updated Rocket Watch
Laval started on the wrong foot versus Syracuse on Saturday night, allowing them to score a little over a minute into the game, a rather ominous start to say the least.
But they responded six minutes later thanks to a goal from Jan Mysak, who has struggled at times this season, but has generated three goals in his last four games, a rather impressive output when the team needed it most.
That was just the beginning of their momentum shift, as they would go on to score three more goals before finally allowing Syracuse to put their second shot behind goaltender Kevin Poulin. who saved 36 of the 39 shots he faced in the 5-3 win.
With the two crucial points in the bank, the Rocket are now tied with Cleveland for the fifth and final playoff spot in the North Division.
The bad news is the Monsters still have one game in hand, and a favourable schedule, at least relative to the Rocket.
Laval is set to face the Crunch once more, as well as the division-leading Toronto Marlies. The saving grace is one of their remaining games is against the Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins, who happen to be the worst team in the Atlantic Division.
Cleveland will face the Rochester Americans twice, which, in all logic, should result in two losses. The same can be said about their game against the Utica Comets, it’s likely to result in a loss.
However, they’re also going to play the Grand Rapid Griffins, one of the worst teams in the AHL.
Regardless of how the games turn out, one thing we can say is that Laval has shown phenomenal resolve in a season where the cards were stacked against them.
And though many of the players deserve praise, we’d be remiss if we did not mention Jean-Francois Houle’s work, which hasn’t just prepared his players for making a significant impact once they were called up to the NHL, it has also allowed the Laval Rocket to remain competitive down the stretch.
MHN 2023 NHL Draft
MHN Post-Lottery 1st-Round Mock Draft
4shares Share Tweet Comment! Reddit FlipAll but four picks have yet to be determined in the first round of the...
MHN 2023 NHL Mock Draft: Pre-Lottery Edition
13shares Share Tweet Comment! Reddit FlipThe 2023 NHL Draft Lottery is just a few days away, and we did a...
Habs kept the young players up too long in which they could have helped to solidify laval’s playoff spot. Should have called up echl players which would have resulted in more rookie mistakes.
You can’t call up players that aren’t on NHL deals..
Oh, so no echl player is on an nhl deal? So we can’t call them up?
The other option was to get some bad players via trade and have most of our best young players helping Laval.
The Canadiens claimed Tierney and traded for Allard (who was recalled).
They had a 50-contract limit to watch out for as well.