The Milwaukee Admirals opened the week with back-to-back losses against division rivals Chicago and Iowa. Despite okay offensive performances in both contests, Milwaukee couldn’t get the goaltending it needed, dropping all four points available.
The Admirals rebounded with a resounding win over the Wolves on Sunday, leaving them with a division-best 8-4-0 record. Milwaukee takes on Iowa again this weekend with a home-and-home on Friday and Saturday.
- On Saturday, Nashville returned defender Jordan Gross to the Milwaukee Admirals
- Also on Saturday, forward Juuso Pärssinen was recalled to Nashville, scoring his first NHL goal in his debut
- Last Tuesday, defender Luke Prokop was returned to the WHL’s Seattle Thunderbirds from ECHL Norfolk
- Milwaukee’s penalty kill currently ranks fourth in the entire AHL with an 87.5% success rate
Milwaukee Admirals (3) vs. Chicago Wolves (5)
Without looking at the score, Milwaukee had every reason to take this school-day contest; the Wolves were struggling, the Admirals stayed out of the box, and they nearly doubled Chicago in shots on goal. But after an opening rebound goal from Markus Nurmi, things got dicey.
The Wolves responded by putting two goals past Yaroslav Askarov—partially thanks to questionable defensive efforts from Adam Wilsby and Kevin Gravel, respectively.
Tommy Novak and Juuso Pärssinen traded goals with Chicago to even things up at three, but the Wolves added two more to take a 5-3 victory. Askarov faced just 23 shots, and while his comfort level is growing, he just couldn’t get into a rhythm in this one.
Milwaukee Admirals (3) vs. Iowa Wild (4)
After their mid-week loss, head coach Karl Taylor went with Devin Cooley in the net for this contest, who was okay with a 26-save performance. The Wild took an early lead and then traded goals with Milwaukee through the first two periods with Luke Evangelista notching both for the Admirals:
Power-play snipe = hat-trick watch for Luke Evangelista #Smashville #MILHockey pic.twitter.com/rbrKfab8Hw— OTF: Preds Prospects (@OnTheFutureOTF) November 12, 2022
After allowing a two-goal lead to the Wild, Milwaukee responded late in the third period with a snipe from Kiefer Sherwood—who, like Evangelista (two goals and four points in his last three games), led the Admirals’ offensive charge this week with three goals and five points in his last five games. Ultimately, though, it wasn’t enough as Milwaukee fell 4-3 to Iowa.
Milwaukee Admirals (6) @ Chicago Wolves (3)
For this Sunday contest, Karl Taylor went back to Yaroslav Askarov, who sat untested for at least two periods. Anttoni Honka opened the scoring when his power-play point shot took a last-minute bounce, but Jimmy Huntington responded with a rebound goal after a hardworking forecheck from Egor Afanasyev.
Moments later, Luke Evangelista and Spencer Stastney connected on an odd-man rush for the latter’s first AHL goal. Before the end of the first, Askarov’s glove was beaten from a distance to tie the game.
In period two, the Admirals outshot the Wolves 23-8 and added goals from Afanasyev, John Leonard, and Tommy Novak. But, those numbers are deceptive as they weren’t all that dominant possession-wise. Milwaukee’s top pair of Kevin Gravel and Jordan Gross were terrorized, facing 19 combined zone entries all night and allowing 11. While they prevented Chicago from attempting many high-danger shots, they surrendered 65.07 and 77.56 shot attempts per 60 minutes of even-strength play.
Despite an offensive onslaught yesterday from MKE, the Jordan Gross-Kevin Gravel pairing struggled defensively... This shift is astonishing (and somehow ended in an Admirals' goal)!#Smashville #MILHockey pic.twitter.com/AZa3QdEhFN— OTF: Preds Prospects (@OnTheFutureOTF) November 15, 2022
In the end, Milwaukee hung 41 shots on Chicago in their 6-3 win, but the defense and goaltending were nothing to write home about. Yaroslav Askarov now has an 0.886 save percentage and a -3.976 goals-saved above-average rate through eight games.
The Week Ahead
- Friday, November 18 @ Iowa Wild
- Saturday, November 19 vs. Iowa Wild
All statistics are courtesy of eliteprospects.com, theAHL.com, or manually tracked.