Finz or Fonz?
The Hartford Wolf Pack hammered the Worcester Sharks last night, 4-1, in a pre-season game held at the International Skating Center in Simsbury, Ct.
A sloppily-played first period by the Wolf Pack, combined with some stellar play by Sharks goalie Rob "DikLikar" McVicar in net (playing well above his career ECHL'er status for the first period-and-a-half, before being spelled by runty Ryan MacDonald) kept the game scoreless early on. Hartford's dominance began to show in the second period, though, as the Pack broke through with two goals to take a 2-0 lead, outshooting the Sharks, 20-3.
Marvin "Gumby Legs" Degon made the score 3-1 for Hartford late in the third period when he fired the puck home from the right face-off circle during a 5-on-3 power play. The Pack's 4th and final goal of the night, credited to Martin Richter after originally being given to Mark Lee, was a fluky goal that clanked off the post and involved a conference between the refs to confirm that it had gone in.
Al Montoya played the entire game in net for the Wolf Pack (with Chris Holt as the back-up) and looked quick and sharp for the most part, though he's kept his tendency to wander around a little bit.
Ryan Constant getting ready to throw down (Chris Rutsch photo)
The only fight of the game was between Hartford's Ryan Constant, a Cree Indian, and Worcester's Brennan Evans. Both players threw their helmets to the ice right after dropping the gloves, which will be a common sight this year with the new mandatory visors rule. Evans is almost half-a-foot taller than Constant, but Constant held his ground well and even got in the best punch of the fight, an upper-cut that snapped Evans' head back.
The Worcester Sharks are new to the AHL this year, having been the Cleveland Barons, while the old Worcester Ice Cats are now playing in Peoria as the Rivermen. The Worcester mascot, "Finz", is one of the dorkiest-looking mascots that I've ever seen, though he would probably look better with some sort of shark body instead of just a jersey and a fin. Unlike his relative, Fonz-- who was always somewhat of a sissy, despite his leather biker look and all-- Finz is also a poor sport and a bad example for children:
Finz steals some kid's lunch money, then pisses on his homework
Just like the real Sharks players would, Finz loses to a bunch of girls
Finz gets busted by Officer Willie for pushing dope outside the school
Unlike the Fonz, the Finz is not cool.