Sunday, December 10, 2017

RECAP: Sea Dogs lose 4-2

FINAL: Gatineau 4, Saint John 2
SAINT JOHN - The Saint John Sea Dogs lost their third straight game on Sunday, falling 4-2 to the Gatineau Olympiques.

The Sea Dogs carried a 2-1 advantage into the third period only to allow three goals in the final frame. Saint John recorded just six shots in the third.

Saint John's power play provided some offence, going one-for-five on the night. Anthony Boucher and William Poirier scored for Saint John. Boucher also had an assist. Alex D'Orio made 21 stops in the loss.

Mitchell Balmas, Alex Breton, Alec Malo and Giordano Finoro scored for Gatineau. Tristan Berube made 28 saves in the win.

Balmas scored the lone goal of the first period. Saint John replied in the second with Boucher scoring at 3:23 and then Poirier putting Saint John in front with a power play marker at 13:58.

Some third period penalties proved costly for the Sea Dogs. At 10:29, Breton scored on the man advantage to make it 2-2. Then at 15:09 and Matt Green serving a four-minute high sticking penalty, Malo connected to put Gatineau back in front, 3-2.

The Olympiques added an empty net goal at 18:35 to make it a 4-2 final.

Game Day 33: vs Olympiques

SAINT JOHN - The Saint John Sea Dogs are back in action on home ice this afternoon.

The Sea Dogs take on the Gatineau Olympiques at 3 p.m. It's Bingo Day at the Station in support of the Empty Stocking Fund.

Saint John is expected to be without captain Joe Veleno again, who is awaiting a trade.

TV/Radio/Webcast: Rogers TV/96.1 NewSong FM/QMJHL Live

Records: The Sea Dogs are 8-18-4-2 for 22 points (6th Maritimes, 17th QMJHL) while the Olympiques are 16-10-2-2 for 36 points (5th West, 10th QMJHL).

Last games: The Sea Dogs are coming off a 5-2 loss in Bathurst last night. Cole Reginato and Ostap Safin scored for Saint John. Matt Williams made 30 saves in the win. The Olympiques are coming off a 3-1 win in Charlottetown last night. Piere-Olivier Lacombe, Anthony Beauchamp and Mitchell Balmas scored for Gatineau. Mathieu Bellemare made 31 saves in the win.

2017-18 head-to-head: The Sea Dogs are 0-1-0-0 against the Olympiques this season while Gatineau is 1-0-0-0 against Saint John.

Last meeting: Dec. 1 in Gatineau where the Olympiques edged the Sea Dogs 2-1. Pier-Olivier Lacombe and Alexandre Landreville scored for Gatineau while Ostap Safin replied for Saint John. Tristan Berube made 23 saves in the win. Matthew Williams made 27 saves in the loss.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

FINAL: Sea Dogs lose 5-2

FINAL: Saint John 2, Bathurst 5
BATHURST - With their captain out of the lineup, the Saint John Sea Dogs had a rough night offensively in a 5-2 loss to the Acadie-Bathurst Titan.

The Sea Dogs recorded just 10 shots on goal through the first 40 minutes. They had a better third period, putting 13 shots on net.

The team was no doubt a little shaken up after news came out last night that Joe Veleno would be traded in just over a week. Despite that and the offensive struggles, the Sea Dogs stayed in this game for much of the night. They were within one early in the third period but the Titan surged, adding two more in the 5-2 victory.

Saint John's power play also had a better performance than we've seen of late, scoring twice on six opportunities.

Cole Reginato and Ostap Safin scored for Saint John. Matt Williams made 30 saves in the loss.

Antoine Morand scored twice for Bathurst while singles came from Dawson Theede, German Rubtsov and Jeffrey Truchon-Viel. Joseph Murdaca made 21 stops in the win.

Veleno not dressed for Dogs in Bathurst

BATHURST - Has Joe Veleno's Saint John Sea Dogs career already come to an end?

The Sea Dogs opted not to dress Veleno for Saturday's contest against the Acadie-Bathurst Titan, saying he is "day-to-day with an upper body injury," as per Tim Roszell. He is not with the team in Bathurst.

Following Friday night's news, it makes sense not to dress him. There's no point in risking him getting injured (or further injured - if he actually is injured) and having the trade called off.

The Sea Dogs have four games remaining before the QMJHL's trade period begins on Dec. 18 - tonight's game in Bathurst, tomorrow's against Gatineau, next Friday in Moncton and next Saturday against Charlottetown.

There's certainly a good chance Veleno does not dress for any of those games, either.

Following last night's news, the Sea Dogs have recalled forwards Ben Reid and Aiden MacIntosh from the MHL's St. Stephen Aces. Reid has appeared in seven games with Saint John this season while MacIntosh has yet to appear in a QMJHL game.

Sant John dressed 13 forwards and six defencemen for warm up on Saturday, which included recent call ups MacIntosh, Reid and Luke Wilson.

The Sea Dogs appear to be all in on rebuilding now, so more roster moves are likely on the way over the next couple weeks.

Game Day 32: at Bathurst

BATHURST - There is still hockey to be played even after last night's big news.

The Saint John Sea Dogs will take on the Acadie-Bathurst Titan at 7 p.m. at the KC Irving Regional Centre, a building they have struggled in for some time.

The Sea Dogs are not expected to have captain Joe Veleno in their lineup following last night's news of a soon-to-be-confirmed blockbuster trade.

TV/Radio/Webcast: Rogers TV/96.1 NewSong FM/QMJHL Live

Records: The Sea Dogs are 8-17-4-2 for 22 points (6th Maritimes, 17th QMJHL) while the Titan are 17-8-4-2 for 40 points (2nd Maritimes, 6th QMJHL).

Last games: The Sea Dogs are coming off a 4-3 loss to the Drummondville Voltiegurs on Wednesday night at Harbour Station. Joe Veleno scored twice for the Sea Dogs while Ostap Safin added a solo marker. Alex D'Orio made 23 saves in the loss. The Titan are coming off a 3-2 overtime loss in Rimouski last night. Noah Dobson and Justin Ducharme scored for Bathurst. Reilly Pickard made 32 saves in the loss.

2017-18 head-to-head: The Sea Dogs are 1-2-0-0 against the Titan this season while Bathurst is 2-1-0-0 against Saint John.

Last meeting: Oct. 25 at Harbour Station where the Titan defeated the Sea Dogs 5-3. Samuel L'Italien scored twice for Bathurst while singles came from Ethan Crossman, Antoine Morand and Jordan Maher. Joe Veleno, Anthony Boucher and Robbie Burt all scored for Saint John. Reilly Pickard made 27 saves in the win. Alex D'Orio made 19 stops in the loss.

Report: Veleno will be traded to Drummondville

The Saint John Sea Dogs are on the verge of pulling off one of the biggest trades in franchise history, reports Mikael Lalancette of TVA Sports.

As reported by Lalancette, the Sea Dogs will trade captain Joe Veleno to the Drummondville Voltigeurs in exchange for several draft picks - which includes three first round selections.
The transaction will take place when the Christmas trading period opens.

The deal, which is presumably accurate, will be one of the largest made in the QMJHL in recent years. When five draft picks are involved it's usually large - when three first rounders are involved it's huge.

Veleno, who is expected to be a first round pick in this year's NHL Draft, was in an odd spot at this trade period. He has extremely high value given he will likely be back in the league next season.

The Sea Dogs just recently said publicly they would listen to calls for Veleno. Notably, the Sea Dogs have played the Voltigeurs twice in the past week. Sherbrooke, Halifax, Rouyn-Noranda and Quebec also expressed interest, according to Lalancette.

This deal is a lot to take in. We do know this: this trade accelerates Saint John's rebuild significantly - and it's safe to call it a rebuild now.

The QMJHL's trade period begins on Monday, Dec. 18. Saint John's final game prior to the deadline is Dec. 16 against Charlottetown.