Thursday, May 6, 2010

Rats Hope to Stop the Bleeding

Minneapolis, MN – The Minnesota Rink Rats are falling fast and there’s no end in sight. The squad has lost the past 7 games and is 1-9-0 in the past 10 games. Although they’re still in the midst of a playoff spot, the Rink Rats know they’re in for a fight in the next 10 games in order to make the playoffs for the 3rd consecutive season. The fight will continue tonight when they take on the Dugouts.

If the Rink Rats are going to make the playoffs and finish the season off strong, they’re going to have to rely on forwards Mike Cammalleri, David Krejci and Brad Richards to lead the way. All 3 forwards are stuck in a scoring drought at the moment but have the ability of taking over a game. Cammalleri has enjoyed a breakthrough season after lofty expectations and pressure held him to just 29 goals and 29 assists last season. He currently has 41 goals and 32 assists thanks in part to the play of rookie centerman David Krejci. Krejci, a Calder Trophy candidate, has played the majority of the season centering Cammalleri and currently leads the league in rookie scoring with 23 goals and 45 assists, despite a prolonged scoring drought and a leg injury that hampered his play for about 15 games midway through the season. Still there are no excuses.

“David’s been great all year long,” stated Cammalleri following their morning skate today. “He’s just so dangerous with the puck and he moves the puck so well. He’s been a great contributor to our team all season long.”

Following today’s practice Head Coach, Dan Bylsma reiterated to his club that the team needs wins and guys, like Krejci & Cammalleri, need to start scoring.

“We have to play a full 60 minutes – no excuses,” said Bylsma. “We’re having a tough time following the trade deadline but I don’t care. All of our guys need to pick it up a notch and we need to start winning games, no matter the opponent.

With 10 games remaining every point counts as Minnesota looks to cap off a Jekyll-and-Hyde season with a playoff berth. One things for certain, if the Rats are going to get there it’s going to be behind solid goaltending and guys like Krejci & Cammalleri making plays.

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