Kamloops Pylons: The Eighth Year (2018-2019) – A Massive Trade Pays Off

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Notable Events

  • There’s no easy way to say this. I traded starting goalie Kyle Pfeifer since it was the last year of his contract.
  • Pylons Season Record: 48-23-11
  • Rivermen Season Record: 38-28-10
  • Owner wanted me to make the Stanley Cup Finals… it was also the last year of my (the GM) contract, so I had to please the owner!
  • I may have found the next starting goalie after Jake Allen!
  • I suck at the draft. Badly.

Trades/Acquistions During the Season

  • OFFSEASON: I signed goalie Joakin Lahti to a 3 year contract. He’s 23 years old with a B/B- potential! The goal was that he would be my 3rd goalie to front the Rivermen.
  • OFFSEASON: THE PFEIFER TRADE. I traded Goalie K. Pfeifer (97 overall) to the Buffalo Sabres for:
    • 2019 1st Round Draft Pick
    • 2020 1st Round Draft Pick
    • 2019 5th Round Draft Pick
    • D Christian Ehrhoff (87 overall … 3 years left in his contract)
    • C Derek Roy (89 overall … 1 year left! Bit of a risk!)
  • TRADE DEADLINE: I traded my 2019 2nd Round Pick in exchange to Pittsburgh for their 2019 2nd Round Pick and the right to some rookie named B. Kobayashi (D). I have no idea why they offered this trade, but I was anticipating a cup run so I just accepted it in the chance I could get a slightly earlier 2nd round pick! I didn’t even sign the rookie :P

I don’t feel bad about the Pfeifer trade. He was making between $6-7 million a year and I just KNEW a massive raise would be in order if I kept him. So instead of doing what I did with C. Johanson and some other good players, who I just had to let go, I made sure I got something in return this time. A fantastic 1st-line worthy centre (look at his season stats below) and a fantastic 1st defensive pair defenseman (look at his stats too!). That should help to even out the hit to our goaltending! … theoretically. Plus I have 2 extra first round picks! w00t! Honestly, I think this was a great trade. I wonder how much Kyle is making now… take a guess. Nope. 4 years, $11.300 million. Less than Ehrhoff and Roy combined. … I think less than C. Johanson is making too.

Player Season Stats

 

# Pos Player GP G A PTS PIMS +/-
1 (+2) C R. Johanson 82 42 69 111 37 56
2 (-1) LW K. Smith 82 51 56 107 120 52
3 (-1) C C. Pedlar 82 32 62 94 70 23
4 (N) C D. Roy 82 22 62 84 68 38
5 (-1) LW T. Giesbrecht 82 29 49 78 137 25
6 (-1) RW J. Skinner 82 31 35 66 8 23
7 (N) D C. Ehrhoff 79 8 36 44 6 44
8 (-1) C P. Bergeron 82 12 28 40 14 13
9 (-1) D A. Edler 82 11 26 37 81 47
10 (-1) LW D. Perron 82 12 23 35 14 6
11 (-1) C E. Locke 80 15 15 30 19 0
12 (+1) RW A. Zlobin 82 11 16 27 8 0
13 (-3) RW T. Rattie 82 10 13 23 25 0
14 (+1) D M. Weber 82 5 12 17 104 39
15 (-4) C F. Beauvillier 58 4 11 15 13 -5
16 (N) D R. Regehr 74 3 11 14 64 40
17 (N) D B. Olson 36 1 4 5 57 -2
18 (N) D B. Jackman 80 1 2 3 19 -4
19 (N) D V. Nikitin 79 0 1 1 81 -1
20 (-6) RW G. Hoffman 5 0 0 0 2 1
21 (-1) D Y. Alexeev 1 0 0 0 0 -1

 

Lineup Entering the Playoffs

 

Left Wing Centre Right Wing
K. Smith (PWF; 91) R. Johanson (SNP; 96) D. Roy (PLY; 90)
T. Giesbrecht (PLY; 91) C. Pedlar (TWF; 92) J. Skinner (SNP; 89)
D. Perron (PLY; 88) P. Bergeron (TWF; 88) E. Locke (PLY; 85)
A. Zlobin F. Beauvillier (PLY; 83) T. Rattie (SNP; 84)

 

 

Left Defense Right Defense
A. Edler (TWD; 87) C. Ehrhoff (OFD; 87)
R. Reghr (DFD; 85) M. Weber (DFD; 85)
V. Nikitin (TGH; 82) B. Jackman (DFD; 83)

 

G Jake Allen (HYB; 89)

G S. Wedgewood (HYB; 81)

 

The Playoffs

Let’s talk about the Rivermen first. They had a decent season record as they settled in with their new starting goalie, Lahti, 38-28-10. This allowed them to enter the playoffs unlike the previous season, where they made it to the second round. The Riverment swept the Charlotte Checkers in the first round and found themselves up against the Houston Aeros: L 2-4; W 4-1; W 4-8; L 6-1; L 4-3; L 3-5.

Unfortunately, I later found out that Lahti had been injured and the game figured that, in addition to not alerting me this had happened, the worst available Rivermen goalie (not even signed by me) was suitable to replace him. Stupid game. This is responsible for the first 2 losses, Lahti started on the final game, but to no avail.

PYLON TIME. The problem with the Pylons is that on March 6, 2019, our starter Jake Allen was injured – a concussion. This meant an entire month was played with Wedgewood in net, which, at an 81 overall, wasn’t an ideal solution. This also meant that Wedgewood would have to start for the Pylons at the beginning of the playoffs.

Round one was against the Canucks. We won the first game in a double OT (K. Smith with the winning goal) and the second game in one period of OT (T. Giesbrecht with game winner). Game three the Pylons lost in regulation, 2-4. However, Jake Allen was ready to go for game 4! With Zlobin out of the lineup and replaced with Hoffman, the Pylons won game 4 in OT (R. Johanson with game winner), and game 5 in regulation 4-1.

Round two was versus the Nashville Predators. We swept ‘em, all in regulation. 2-5; 3-5; 3-1; 2-1. That’s it!

Round three was against the L.A. Kings. The Pylons fell to the Kings in the first game, 1-3. However, they then won the next 4: 2-5; 4-3; 4-0; 2-3.

Finally, the Stanley Cup Final. VERSUS THE WINNIPEG JETS. Weren’t expecting that, were you? I sure wasn’t. The Pylons won the first game 1-3, and the Jets responded by beating us 4-2. The Pylons weren’t going to have any of that though, and, rallying together to prevent me (the GM) from losing my job, won the next 3 games, 2-1; shutting them out 3-0; and finally 4-1. The last game was particularly impressive, as 3 of those 4 goals were thanks to a hat trick by K. Smith!

SO WE WON THE STANLEY CUP. YAY.

The Calder cup was won by the Abbotsford Heat!

2019 Draft

  1. RW Joey Bootland & D Matthew Battaglia
  2. D Tommy Stewart
  3. RW Joe Guerin
  4. LW Tom Goldman
  5. G Andy Dykuis & LW Dylan Jacina
  6. C Anthony Bolland
  7. C Dustin Betts

Re-signed:

  • C Derek Roy (3 years @ $5.640 down from $5.745)
  • LW David Perron (3 years @ $5.055 up from $4.315)
  • RW Joey Bootland (73B-; my 2019 1st round pick. 3 years @ $0.845).
  • D Tommy Stewart (71B-/C; 2019 2nd round pick. 3 years @ $0.765)
  • RW Joe Guerin (70B-; 2019 3rd round pick. 3 years @ $0.815)
  • LW Tom Goldman (67B-; 2019 4th round pick. 3 years @ $0.635)
  • D M. Weber (2 years @ $3.925 … he’s one of our main D men! After losing 2 to retirement, it was important to keep around a veteran or two. Up from $2.020. That hurt :( ).

I let go:

  • LW S. Della Rovere … funny, I traded a lot to get him back. Stupid Riley. :(  
  • C Z. MacQueen
  • D Y. Alexeev
  • RW Y. Pinette
  • RW G. Hoffman (he wasn’t a bad player and I would have re-signed him, but I ran out of money!!)

Free Agents Signed For the Ninth Year:

  • G Alex Dubeau (77B-) 
  • RW Taylor Burke (78B-)
  • D Curtis Forney (80B-)
  • C Pekka Laatikainen (78B-)

I don’t normally let you guys in on what happens in the offseason, but I will leave you with that list of 4 free agents I signed for next season :P

Notable Retired Players

  • D. Byfuglien (WPG)
  • K. Wellwood
  • Maxim Lapierre (MTL)
  • R. Reghr (KAM!!)
  • B. Jackman (KAM!!)
  • Tuomo Ruutu
  • Keith Ballard

Rookie Report

Honestly, not a lot of improvements. I’m going to work on this for next season… Locke is now an 85 overall up from 84. Allen is at 90 up from 89 (deeecent!). The most significant improvement (and this is a big one!) was with new goaltender Lahti. I signed him at a 77 overall, he is now an 82 overall (over Wedgewood, the Pylon’s backup) with lots of potential to go! It is very possible that he could turn into the next Jake Allen… I think I’ve found another fantastic goal tender! Yay free agents! :D

Closing Remarks

I’m really excited about Lahti as well as C. Ehrhoff and D. Roy. These are 3 fantastic new players for the Pylons! I’m worried about my salary cap though. It’s been too high for too long, and I really need some new good rookies. Locke has been performing well and is on his way up (he’s definitely 2nd line centre material, but I have so many fantastic centres right now they’re playing on the wings!). Losing a centre may be a possibility for next season… as well as trading Perron. He’s getting pretty old and he’s worth more than a 3rd line player. He really deserves to play on a 1st or 2nd line on another team… I may be able to get something good for him. I didn’t want to just lose him to free agency though, I’m done with that.

The Pfeifer trade was risky, but ultimately I think it was worth it. Hopefully he will enjoy his new home in Buffalo!

A. Guzman… he didn’t have the greatest season. As opposed to his previous points of 94, 83, and 97, Alex only managed 64 points this year. He is a 91 overall, still with potential!

Also, I, as a GM, signed another 5 year deal with the Pylons. :D

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