Save that headline for later.
Anaheim made official the recall of John Gibson from Norfolk today. Gibson played two games for the Ads over the weekend, splitting the decisions. His play Friday reflects his status as a prospect, stopping 32 of 34 shots in a 3-2 Norfolk win. Saturday was not as kind, partly due to the goaltender and much to do with a porous defense. With repetitions in the books, the Ducks recalled him to spell starter Frederik Andersen. Anaheim is in the middle of their opening homestand and welcome the lowly Buffalo Sabres to town on Wednesday. Gibson figures to get the start in that game and possibly a chance to face another Eastern Conference foe, the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Anaheim plans to work Gibson as much as possible. He will be shuttled between Norfolk and wherever the Ducks may be several times this season. It’s a bit inconsistent in development, but will keep him playing.
As far as the Admirals are concerned, they must plan for their first road trip of the season. It will be a success if they can string two wins together or at least points in two consecutive games. A very successful road trip ends in at least five out of six points, a very good one results in four out of six. Norfolk faces Providence, Springfield, and Hartford. Jarrod Skalde faces his first tough decisions when it comes to goaltending.
Best strategy suggests that the Admirals play Goalie A-Goalie B-Goalie A in that order, with goalie A being the presumed number one. Igor Bobkov nor Jason LaBarbera did anything to make themselves stand out. Yes, Labarbera got the win. However, it was thanks to the offense netting 5 goals while he allowed 4. Bobkov had the defense lapse on him yet did himself no favors. Four games in and the Admirals have shown some resiliency in their play and a willingness to comeback. They have yet to show consistency.
Norfolk may also need to recall a player from Utah. Going on a road trip with one (or no) extra forward and the possibility of no extra defenseman is not optimal. Anaheim has yet to return to full health, meaning several possible additions will remain with the Ducks. Here’s hoping the Admirals put it together.