Laval Rocket vs Springfield Thunderbirds Game Recap: Line-up, Score, Game Report, Statistics, Highlights, Three Stars, Post-Game, Interviews, AHL, Rocket Sports Media
FINAL | Eastern Conference Final – Game 6 | Monday, June 13, 2022
Series tied 3-3
|MassMutual Center, Springfield, MA|
Rocket LineupForward lines
Rafael Harvey-Pinard – Cedric Paquette – Alex Belzile
Brandon Gignac – Jean-Sebastien Dea – Gabriel Bourque
Joel Teasdale – Danick Martel – Jesse Ylonen
Lucas Condotta – Gianni Fairbrother (seventh defenseman) – Devante Smith-PellyDefense pairings
Xavier Ouellet – Louie Belpedio
Corey Schueneman – Tobie Paquette-Bisson
Sami Niku – Tory DelloGoaltenders
Cayden Primeau – Kevin PoulinScratches
Olivier Galipeau, Terrance Amorosa, Nicolas Mattinen, Owen Savory, Cameron Hillis, Riley Kidney, Peter Abbandonato, Joshua Roy, Jean-Christophe Beaudin, Kevin RoyInjuries
Lukas Vejdemo (lower body), Mattias Norlinder (upper body), Nate Schnarr
Game Report written by Amy Johnson
After more than six weeks of grueling post-season play, the Laval Rocket’s season came down to Monday’s night’s game six tilt against the Springfield Thunderbirds. After falling in overtime on Saturday night for a second time on home ice, the Rocket faced elimination with the T-birds leading the series 3-2. Could the Rocket dig deep and extend to a seventh game?
Jean-Francois Houle opted to return to an 11-7 formation, slotting Gianni Fairbrother back into the lineup as the seventh defenseman. Nate Schnarr was out of the lineup again with injury. In net, it was Cayden Primeau against Joel Hofer, as Houle stuck with his same starter from the second game of the playoffs and Drew Bannister continued his goaltender rotation.
The opening five minutes of play was decidedly sloppy at both ends of the ice. Hofer needed to be sharp early, as Laval put an early shot right on him, but the Thunderbirds struggled to get a shot through to Primeau.
Discipline was something Houle wanted his team to focus on in this game, but the Rocket penalty killers were given a tall task early in the game when Devante Smith-Pelly took a four-minute high-sticking penalty. The Thunderbirds had not yet scored on the man-advantage in this series, and although their power play looked much more dangerous this time around, the Rocket still came out of it unscathed.
After that, the Thunderbirds controlled much of the play in the period, although not much really took place of note. Laval seemed a bit sluggish on their skates, and iced the puck at least seven times in the frame. With 2:56 left before intermission, Danick Martel was called for slashing to put the Rocket shorthanded once again, forcing the Rocket to kill off yet another penalty.
After leaving the game in the opening period looking a little worse for wear, the Rocket announced at the start of the second that Jesse Ylonen would not return to the game. That would leave Houle’s bench with just 10 forwards for the remaining 40 minutes of hockey.
At one point it seemed as if the Thunderbirds were going to break through first, when Will Bitten got loose on a breakaway but didn’t have enough gas left in the tank to get a dangerous shot off on Primeau.
Shortly after that, a miscommunication between Hofer and Tommy Cross behind the Springfield net led to a turnover that Martel pounced on. He put the puck into an open net as the Thunderbirds’ netminder scrambled to get back to the crease.
A fourth Laval penalty arrived with 5:56 left in the period, but once again the Rocket penalty killers came up strong. The period ended with Laval on their first power play of the night and the Rocket would have carryover man-advantage time to begin the third.
After coming up empty on the carryover power play, Gabriel Bourque kicked off a string of scoring in the third period for Laval with a wrister less than two minutes into the frame. Martel followed that up with his second goal of the night.
Matthew Peca ruined any chances of a Primeau shutout when he finally put Springfield on the board with just under five minutes remaining. Hofer was pulled for an extra attacker, but Brandon Gignac was able to pot an empty-netter.
The Rocket ended the game on the power play, and Lucas Condotta scored his second goal of the postseason while on the man-advantage.
Four goals in the third period ensured that Laval’s season would not end on this night, and that a seventh and final game would need to played to determine which of these two teams will advance to the Calder Cup Final.
Houle stated after the game that Ylonen would see the doctor tomorrow regarding his injury, but was doubtful that the young forward would play on Wednesday night.
Be sure to scroll down to hear post-game interviews with Bourque, Martel, Primeau, and Houle by the AHL Report team and other members of the media.
Plus / Minus
▲ Danick Martel, Lucas Condotta, Brandon Gignac
▼ Devante Smith-Pelly, Joel Teasdale
|1 for 3||Power Play||0 for 4|
Stars of the Game
|AHL Official Three Stars|
What Did They Say?
Post-game interviews conducted for The AHL Report tonight by Amy Johnson
|Follow @TheAHLReport on Twitter|
Habs Hockey Report: Off-Season Excitement | VIDEO https://t.co/RcKeXRSGaP @RocketSports pic.twitter.com/nw0y4uv3OA— All Habs (Canadiens) (@AllHabs) June 10, 2022
Rocket on a Roll | Press Zone ep. 259 https://t.co/vUlUXptH4W pic.twitter.com/ZeozGafwDy— AHL Report (@TheAHLReport) June 7, 2022
Missed Opportunities in OT | ECF RECAP: SPR @ LAV https://t.co/2HY2xAKfV4 pic.twitter.com/DSQhIGREoy— AHL Report (@TheAHLReport) June 12, 2022
Follow @theAHLReport on Twitter
salut-bien chers amis du rocket,
thanks for the post-game
big win.on the road.one to go
team is a reflection of the coach.
never say die,,,no quit in these fellows
wish the team well/best of luck wedensday nite
guyCH10 soit avec-nous en esprit,toujours
Bon matin! Thanks so much for reading and commenting, yes a very big win by the Laval crew! Took advantage of a less-than-energetic Springfield team; Wednesday night should be intense!