Archive for Peter Delmas

The Rumor Mill

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on May 22, 2009 by Nathan Fournier

I would say it’s that time of the year but isn’t alway this time of the year with this team?  There are two prominent trade rumors involving the Lewiston Maineiacs.

The first one involves Garrett Clarke heading to the Halifax Mooseheads.  Now I first heard this rumor in late April.  I knew nothing but Clarke name heading to Halifax.  Talking with a few people, it seems Clarke was unhappy in Lewiston and the team was unhappy about his play.

Willy Pavalov of the Halifax Chronicle is reporting one aspect of the information I’ve been told.   

It seems Clarke, 17, wasn’t happy in Lewiston and asked for a trade at the end of the season. A former Windsor area resident, Clarke’s preferred destination was obviously Halifax.

Now a 19 year old forward and a seventh round pick doesn’t seem a whole lot in return for a former first rounder and a potential first rounder in the 2011 NHL draft?  The only problem is the Maineiacs have no leverage in the deal.  If all accounts are correct, Clarke asked to be traded and his value goes down.

The Maineiacs are taking the Bill Belichick school of thought and not commenting on the situation, unless a trade has been made. 

The second trade rumor involves Danick Paquette, Patrick Cusack, Dominic Savoie, and Peter Delmas heading to the Remparts.  RDS first reported it today.  I think everyone believes Paquette is a gone from the Lewiston Maineiacs.

I find this rumor very intriguing in the whole Patrick Roy taking a position with the Colorado Avalanche saga.  My thought is he might not be getting the job, yet.   With Delmas’ struggles last season wouldn’t the Avalanche want Roy to work with him one on one all year long?  I also think Roy can keep Paquette in line.  Maybe Ray Bourque takes an assistant coaches position to learn the ropes this season.  The Denver Post reported Bourque will take Roy’s coaching duties in Quebec.

Bourque has held an assistant coaching job when his sons, Chris and Ryan, were at Cushing Academy.  I believe he was also a consultant to the Bruins coaching staff a few years ago.

By the way, the Remparts would send defenseman Samuel Carrier and forward Sébastien Trudeau the Maineiacs way.  High draft picks would be also involved according to RDS.

Carrier had four goals and five assists in 56 games as a 16-year-old.  Trudeau, a 17-year-old, had 19 goals and 22 assists in 68 games.  This would be a good rebuilding move for the team.  Okay, the stats don’t jump out, but these were young kids on an experience Remparts squad.  They were at the bottom of the depth chart which means less ice time.  If they come to Lewiston, there will be more ice time and the stats should jump up.

15 days.  That’s when the draft takes place and deals can happen.

Update: As I just finished this post, I notice Justin Pelletier is reporting the deal is confirmed involving Paquette, Delmas, Cusack and Savoie.

That’s My Take

(Nathan also covers the Maineiacs for the Maine Hockey Journal. He also started the World of Junior Hockey. His email is fourniern@students.nescom.edu.)

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The Second Season Starts

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on March 18, 2009 by Nathan Fournier

Now it’s a date with the top team in the QMJHL. Two years ago the Maineiacs were in the Voltigeurs shoes. There are still three guys on the President’s Cup winning team. Danick Paquette, Patrick Cusack, and Peter Delmas were all apart of the team. I believe Alexander Beaton practiced with the team during the run.

Hopefully the three players will lead the way because they been in Drummondville’s shoes. They could probably relate what Drummondville is thinking on the facing the 16th seed.

Even though Lewiston lost against Chicoutimi on Sunday. It was great to see the team responded after the first period. They have confidence now if they get in a little hole or the calls aren’t going their way, to fight back and get back into the contest.

They still have to play a good game and not take the bad penalties. You need to limit the Voltigeurs chances on the man advantage because they convert about 33 percent of the time.

Peter Delmas needs to play like he did on Sunday. I was surprised how he stepped it up but he has been playing well since Don MacAdam became the bench boss. Whoever is in the net, they will need to steals the wins because the Maineiacs doesn’t have the fire power to outscore Drummondville in a 6-5 game

No matter what happens, hopefully the team can build off from this series for next season.

That’s My Take

(Nathan also started “The World of Junior Hockey Blog” and is a contributor to the Maine Hockey Journal. His email is fourniern@students.nescom.edu.)

Will Lemay Stay?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on March 3, 2009 by Nathan Fournier

Where ever the Lewiston Maineiacs end up next season. Has Adrien Lemay earned one of the three twenty year old spots that are available?

He has singly won some games for the team. The most recent came in Friday’s win against the Gatineau Olympiques where he had 40 saves in the 2-1 victory.

First who’s eligible as a twenty year old next season. First is Boston’s fifth round selection in the 2007 draft, Denis Reul. Most teams don’t hang onto a twenty year old European player. With the depth at D, I believe this is Reul’s last season in the organization.

That brings us to Patrick Cusack. I believe he will start the season with the team. Depends how the season pans out, he can stay to lead the group to a playoff birth or b e an asset come the trade deadline.

Another defenseman that will be a twenty year old is Sean Stagles. He was brought in to score from the blue line and hasn’t really done that. his days are numbered I believe.

Matt Bourdeau will be the only twenty year old forward. It will be tough for him to make it next year. He gives it his all but the lack of offensive production that he has had in his junior career is a con.

The team could also bring an overager through trade to bring some veteran experience.

My gut feeling is Lemay will be with the club next year and platoon with Peter Delmas. I can’t see the club going with a Delmas-Connely combo.

One thing is the club will be looking for a goaltender for the future at the upcoming draft. It will allow the potential pick to play Junior A for a year before coming the potential starter in 2010-2011 season when Delmas moves on to the pro game. It’s also a strong possibility that Delmas will be in the Q as a twenty year old.

That’s My Take

(Nathan also started “The World of Junior Hockey Blog” and is a contributor to the Maine Hockey Journal. His email is fourniern@students.nescom.edu.)

MAINEiacs Change The Top

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 15, 2009 by Mike Haggett

It was 5:30 pm Monday afternoon. I was sitting down to dinner with my wife and daughters when my cell phone rings. “Ed Harding was just fired” was the words out of the caller. Needless to say I abruptly excused myself from the table to get more information. At the end of the call, I realized that life was not going to be normal for a few days as others have called to talk about the change starting almost immediately after I ended the call. News spreads fast around town, and this news was too hot not to talk about. The emotion displayed to me by some was pretty incredible.

I want to be right out front with my comments here and say that Ed Harding is a very good hockey man. He didn’t work his way into the situation he did for nothing. I praised the man for the trades he worked at the draft in Sydney last June. Any general  manager who walks out of the first round with two of the best players (Garrett Clarke, Michael Chaput) and the best 17 year old available (Etienne Brodeur) certainly deserves a solid pat on the back. The deal that sent Kevin Marshall to the Quebec Remparts will go down as the trade that started the run for the next championship, and Harding deserves full credit for that. His last significant deal that sent Michael Ward to Cape Breton for Samuel Finn puzzled me a little thinking Harding could have got a little more from Screaming Eagles GM Mario Durocher out of that, in the design of an additional top-5 round pick other than the 5th rounder in 2010. Outside of that, Harding the GM really did a solid job in doing what needed to be done. While some have voiced frustration that Danick Paquette and Peter Delmas weren’t dealt, I will politely remind those that 18 year olds are worth more as 19 year olds, especially good ones. Harding was right in holding onto both as year is everything in junior hockey.

As a coach, the record stands for itself. Despite having great young talent to work with, it appeared at the onset of the season that the talent was handcuffed from the start in a defensive system that was better used with the talent in 2004-05 than 2008-09. Perhaps even Harding underestimated just how good the young horses he had in the stable. The bottom line is that the players just weren’t buying into what he was selling them. The last 11 games have been very trying on everyone in the organization and the Nation as no one likes to see long losing streaks, unless you are the Rimouski Oceanic tanking out to select Sidney Crosby with the top pick in the draft. You can’t fire 22 players as easily as you can the man at the top.

Long before the dismissal of Harding word was around of how players were frustrated with the way they were being treated for various reasons. The telling quote of the situation by MAINEiacs President & Governor Matt McKnight that was printed in Lewiston Sun Journal in a column by Justin Pelletier was this: “It’s about looking into the players’ eyes. A change needed to happen. It appeared that the players didn’t seem to have any fun coming to the rink anymore.” At the junior level, this is more fun for the players than it is a business for 95% of them, and it has to be presented that way. Enough said.

In comes Don MacAdam of whom brings in a tidal wave of low expectations and a ‘show me what you can do’ attitude to loosen up not only the players but the entire organization. MacAdam has already brought smiles and humor back to the forefront, and ‘fun’ will certainly be an adjective that will get more use. For a team that is 14-32, ‘fun’ is all it is about at this stage, and try to assemble some wins down the stretch.

It was announced that MacAdam would coach the remainder of the year and then re-evaluate the future after the season was over, and that is the fair way to approach the situation. Coaching changes in mid-season aren’t the most graceful positions to be in. Regardless of the reasons that the previous coach that was fired, there is a learning curve in this case for MacAdam to get to know the players, the organization, as well as the fans to make that determination of a longer term deal. It’s important for the organization to see results from MacAdam and see that he would be a good fit for the future plans. In this case of the state of the club, taking time and evaluating itself without haste is the right way to proceed. Rest assured that come draft day in June, this club will have a GM and head coach in place at the draft table.

As for the team, all the players are now starting with a clean slate. With a different man at the helm who is a tried and true teaching coach, the way one player has been playing could be a totally different player come March. It’s time to wipe our own slates in ourminds of what players used to play like and give it a few games to watch the new systems emerge.

Sit back, fire up the webcast this weekend or get over to the Flagship Cinema in Auburn and watch the hometown boys turn it around. ‘Fun’ is back, and so am I.

offthepost@lewistonhockey.com

Thoughts on the Split

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 13, 2008 by Nathan Fournier

Facing one of the early surprises this season and getting two points out of the possible four is somewhat satisfying.  I did like what Ed Harding said after the game.  “We aren’t going have a huge celebration.  We are going to face that team on Sunday,” said Harding.  At the same time it was rough to see the team have their early struggles on Sunday.  The team did fight back to get within one.  You have to give them credit to get back into the contest.

Friday night we saw some real nice goals.  The set up between Alex Beaton and Maxime Gratchev for Eric Gelinas’ goal was one of the nicest set-ups I’ve seen.  Credit has to go to Gelinas also for the shot that was also a beauty.  How about Max Gratchev’s shorthanded tally?  When that one found the back of the net, I couldn’t believe it.  That was a seeing eye shot.  The offense was clicking.

Last year I question why Lucas LaBelle was always in the shootout but the kid has some moves.  “People were shocked last year when I picked him but it’s watching them doing their shootouts after practice.  Lucas is pretty crafty, that’s why we send him first,” said Harding.   Lucas LaBelle knew Antoine Tardif from their days in Acadie-Bathurst.  “After every practice we do the same thing in the shootouts.  It’s one of those moves that I always did on the pond back at home,” said Lucas LaBelle.

LaBelle was all over the ice against his former team.  “Both teams were hitting hard, the crowd got into it, we like to feed off the crowd’s momentum,” said LaBelle

Everyone was getting on Peter Delmas for his play after returning from Denver.  Some of the criticism was deserved.  Friday night he was rock solid.  He stopped breakaways at key points of the game.  As the game went on, he was like Boston Red Sox’s pitcher Jon Lester, he just kept getting as the game went on.  The Voltigeurs scored twice on the powerplay but you can’t blame him for those goals.  Harding knew Garrett Clarke’s holding penalty was a penalty.  “Garrett Clarke was holding the kid’s stick.  We know it, we saw it. What I am going to say about it?”  I had a perfect view of the play and I said to myself: “What’s the referee waiting for?”  Clarke’s penalty caused them to go down five on three and Dany Masse scored moments after.

Sunday the only bright other bright spot was some of the young guys stepping up to get the team back into it.  Ed Harding had some interesting points in today’s Sun Journal.

“Steeven Jacques, Dom Savoie and Pier-Oliver Morin really got us going,” Harding said. “They had a few good shifts, and I just kept putting them back out there. The other guys don’t want to play? We’ll play these younger guys.”

It will be interesting to see how much more ice time these guys get the next few games.  Could these kids get more confidence playing in front of the home crowd?

After going to see the Portland Pirates game on Saturday night and seeing physical hockey again.  I was brought back down to earth Sunday when the referees stepped in before Dominic Savoie and Mike Hoffman could dance.  It was disappointing to see the referees step in.  I read our friend Gilles Courteau was in attendance yesterday.

It’s That Time of the Month

It seems we get one juicy rumor a month.  This summer was Garrett Clarke and the start of the season was it Brett Gallant.  Hockey message boards are great to gathering information.  Sometimes someone wants to stir the pot.  This rumor wasn’t necessarily started on a message board but John Moore who does the play by play for the Mooseheads said the Maineiacs were going to be sold on Friday night.  He didn’t say who he heard it from.  Since then Mark Just has comeout and said the team isn’t for sale.  Why would Moore say that a week before the Mooseheads come to town?  Remember last year, the Fog Devils owner said the team wasn’t for sale, within two weeks the team was sold.

That’s My Take

(Nathan also started “The World of Junior Hockey Blog” and is a contributor to the Maine Hockey Journal His email is fourniern@students.nescom.edu.)

What’s Happening?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on October 6, 2008 by Nathan Fournier

(This was written before the win over the Mooseheads.)

Where do you want to start, Lewiston playing shorthanded for most of the game? What about Peter Delmas struggling?  How about Cape Breton’s explosive offense?

The biggest Achilles heel for the Lewiston Maineiacs so far this season has been the lack of discipline on the ice.  It starts with the captains.  It doesn’t help when your leader is back in the locker room before the first period has ended.  I don’t want him to play less physical but he can’t force someone into a fight.  This team needs him to put the puck in the net.

Michael Ward and Patrick Cusack needs to settle down because they are more valueable on the ice then off.  I don’t know what exactly happened to Cusack to warrant that penalty on Saturday night but the entire lost their cool.  It started with Ed Harding yelling at the referees.  That affected the team because LaBelle lost his cool when he got his penalty.

Last night we saw Garrett Clarke’s mean side to him.  He brought energy to the team.  He did the right thing when he got into it with Jan Piskacek the fist time by skating away.  The second time the two met, he let his emotions get the best of him.  Denis Reul did the smart thing by calming Clarke down when he (Clarke) went to the box.  Hopefully Clarke has learned his lesson.

I expected for Peter Delmas to struggle when he came back to the QMJHL because just faced NHL caliber talent.  He has been overcompensating and he still thinks he’s at NHL camp.  Jonathan Bernier struggled last year for a few weeks after coming from Los Angeles.    One thing I have notice with Delmas he’s giving up juicy rebounds and the opponents are cashing in.   Most of those rebounds happen when the team is on the penalty kill.  I want to look on the bright side and just give him more time.

Everyone who follows this league on a daily basis knew how good Olivier Roy is.  Coming into the season, I thought he would have to steal a few games for the Screaming Eagles.  This weekend, Cape Breton proved me wrong.  They have great offensive depth and it could get stronger because Joey Haddad could comeback.  He’s with the Wilkes Barre/Scranton Penguins right now.  If he does comeback we could be talking about the Screaming Eagles as one of the other QMJHL Team in the Memorial Cup.

That’s My Take

(Nathan also started “The World of Junior Hockey Blog” and is a contributor to the Maine Hockey Journal His email is fourniern@students.nescom.edu.)

2008-09: Season Six

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 12, 2008 by Mike Haggett

This is the sixth season of MAINEiacs hockey now. Six. Seems like yesterday when then GM Norm Gosselin of the then Sherbrooke Castors unveiled the new team name and logo at a press conference in February of 2003. That day, which was officially day one of Lewiston QMJHL history, seems in some ways like yesterday, and an eternity at the same time. For a team some league fans dubbed the next Plattsburgh ( a Q team in NY that folded after 17 games), the MAINEiacs are doing quite well. Lewy’s dealt with the bumps and bruises quite well over the years.

It’s that time of the year where the media pundits around the league are scrambling around making their predicitions of where teams are going to end up. Looking around the league messageboards, most fans have their team at the top or in better positions than what will likely be the case. Coaches are going on record that they are going to be competitive, the games all have to be played, it’s not over ’til it’s over, and yadda, yadda, yadda… all the typical media shmooze that fans want to hear and read about. You won’t see or hear a GM or a coach get in front of the microphone and say, “Oh yeah, we’re going to suck this year and don’t bother to pay to see this crap,” although some fans are going to look at their clubs come December and wish there was truth in advertising. (see also: Maple Leafs, Toronto; perpetual rebuilding)

Here is some truth in advertising for the 2008-09 version of the Lewiston MAINEiacs: Just watch.

I know, some of you are thinking, ‘Just watch? What in the H-E-double hockey sticks are you talking about, just watch ?!?!” No, really…watch, and watch closely.

The cornerstones of the future run are here. D Garrett Clarke, C Michael Chaput & LW Etienne Brodeur are more knowns as first round picks, but keep an eye G Jonathan Connely. From more than a couple of sources outside of the team, Connely may prove to be the best goaltender taken in the 2008 draft, despite falling all the way to late in the 5th round. Watch C Steeven Jacques, who could prove to be the late round gem in the new class. While newly drafted Slovakian C Filip Janosik was a little slow out of the gate in camp, expect his comfort level to improve the more acclimated he gets with the country and the language.

The questions out of the gate are numerous. Here are my top 5:

  1. Danick Paquette: Will the 18 year-old captain be able to keep his composure and stay out of the penalty box?
  2. Peter Delmas: With Jonathan Bernier gone, will the second round draft pick of the Colorado Avalanche emerge to be a bonafide top goalie in the league?
  3. Team toughness: With Brett Gallant saying thanks but no thanks, just how physically vulnerable are the MAINEiacs? Grit is certainly with this team, but is grit enough?
  4. Ed Harding: With only 5 players remaining from the 2007 championship club, this is essentially Harding’s team now. Does he have the right players in order to respond to his coaching style?
  5. Sean Stagles: With 19 year-old rookies a rarity in the league, will Stagles be able to get adjusted to the speed of the Q and make a solid contribution as a puck moving defenseman?

Make no bones about it, I love the way this club sets up for this year and beyond. While we’ll hear the typical ‘We compete to win it all every year’ line from Harding, reality is this is the year of the Rimouski Oceanic andn Quebec Remparts. Pending on where Lewiston finishes in March will dictate how far they go before running into one of those two buzzsaws in the postseason. The club in it’s present form is very capable of finishing second in the Telus Central. The Drummondville Voltigeurs may start fairly strong and be second come December, but after they sell off the newly acquired Yannick Riendeau among other older assets, I expect the traditional post-Christmas fade. The Victoriaville Tigres will be, well, not very good, and is a strong bet to finish last in the division. The Shawinigan Cataractes -should- finish at the top, but stranger things have happened in forty years of disappointment in the Saint Maurice river region.

Buckle your season belts and get ready… this is going to be a fun season.