Falcons Open Training Camp

Today marks the opening of training camp for the 2011-2012 edition of the Springfield Falcons. A quick glance at the first day roster reveals only a handful of potential Falcons. Conversely, this is also an opportunity for the other dozen or so players.

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The would-be Falcons will have just four practices together before finding themselves in a game situation when the Connecticut Whale come to town on Wednesday for a 7PM game.

During the week ahead, expect lots of player movement. As of Saturday evening, the Blue Jackets camp roster remains at a bloated 40 players.

With the Jackets taking on the Buffalo Sabres this afternoon at 5PM, cuts will most likely come fast and furious, presumably by Monday morning.

Some familiar names taking to the ice in Springfield today are: Steven Delisle, Dalton Prout, Mike Thomas, Wade MacLeod, Brent Regner, Anton Blomqvist, Aaron Bogosian, Denny Kearney and Oliver Gabriel.

Others who are not so familiar:

Joe Grimaldi - split last season between Evansville and Colorado of the CHL. In 62 games played, he tallied 35 points and added 216 PIM.

Tom Mele - played locally last season for American International College

Matt Lombardi - skated in 66 games for the Trenton Devils of the ECHL, chalking up 20 goals and 13 assists.

Tristin Llewellyn - After 18 games with the University of Michigan, he turned pro playing in 33 games for the Elmira Jackals of the ECHL.

Ryan Palmer - played 65 games for Quad City of the CHL. One goal, eight assists and 116 PIM.

Phil Ginand - finished up his college hockey at Mercyhurst with 20 points in 27 games. Skated 11 games with the Binghamton Senators, tallying one assist.

Yannick Tifu - played most of the season with the Elmira Jackals. In 64 games, Yannick scored 28 goals and added 45 helpers for a nice 73 points. To that, he added 109 minutes in penalties. He also played 10 games for the Binghamton Senators with just one assist.

Obi Aduba - from Walpole, MA he played for Quad City last season. In 66 games, 51 points and 63 PIM.

Chaz Johnson - played 61 games for Ontario of the ECHL with 36 points and 127 PIM. He also skated in four games for the Manchester Monarchs, recording just 2 PIM.

Adam Pineault - Adam is from nearby Holyoke, MA. Last season he played for Pardubice in the Czech league. In 48 games there, Adam scored 9 goals and added 5 assists in addition to recording 60 PIM.

Wade Poplawski - Wade played last season for Mark Dekanich's alma mater, Colgate in the ECAC. In 37 games, Wade had 10 points and 30 PIM.

The two goaltenders to get camp underway are:

Brian Mahoney-Wilson - Brian played his college hockey for Lake Superior last season. In eight games, he had a record of 1-5-1 and a 4.30 GAA.

Mike Spillane - played for the Fayetteville FireAntz of the Southern Pro Hockey League. In 21 games, Mike went 9-11-0 with 1 shutout and had a GAA of 2.42.

After the game against Connecticut on Wednesday, the Falcons will skate Thursday and Friday mornings, preparing for their final two exhibition games. Friday night (while the Portland Pirates and Albany Devils play in West Springfield) the Falcons play the Providence Bruins in Marlborough, MA before returning to the MassMutual Center on Saturday night, again taking on the Baby B's.

The complete Springfield Falcons Training Camp Schedule (camp practices are not open to the public):

Sunday, September 25  Ice Time - 11:00 am @ MassMutual Center

Monday, September 26  Ice Time - 10:00 am @ MassMutual Center

Tuesday, September 27 Ice Time - 10:00 am @ MassMutual Center

Wednesday, September 28 Ice Time - 10:00 am @ MassMutual Center

Preseason Game @ MassMutual Center Vs. Connecticut - 7:00 pm

Thursday, September 29 Ice Time - 10:00 am @ MassMutual Center

Friday, September 30 Ice Time - 10:00 am @ Cyr Arena in Forest Park

Preseason Game @ Marlborough Vs. Providence - 7:00 pm

Saturday, October 1 Ice Time - 10:00 am @ MassMutual Center

Preseason Game @ MassMutual Center Vs. Providence - 7:00 pm

After the October 1st game against Providence, I anticipate some more roster movement. The majority of the roster at that point though, will be the team that gets ready to start the regular season on Friday October 7th.

The Falcons regular season starts with three road games, October 7th in Manchester, NH; October 8th in Albany, NY and October 14th in Wilkes-Barre, PA before returning for their home opener on Saturday October 15th against Providence.

Today in the "A" returns to The Cannon this week, with Falcons training camp news.

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