Third-year pro earns recognition
Norfolk forward Chris Wagner was named to the AHL Eastern Conference All-Star team this afternoon. Wagner has been a bright spot in an otherwise disappointing year for the Admirals. In his third season with the Ads, he has been one of the team’s offensive leaders and earlier earned AHL Player of the Week honors. He is an alternate captain and fan favorite who has seen some time this year with the parent Anaheim Ducks. Despite playing in just 21 games, Wagner is tied for second in scoring with defenseman Brendan Bell. Such a stat says a lot about Wagner’s skill and the lack of offense from the team.
Last year, the AHL adopted a format where one all-league All-Star team faced Swedish Hockey League club Färsjestad BK, limiting the amount of selections. No Admiral made the team. As such, Wagner is the first Admiral to be named to the team since Peter Holland in 2013. Due to recall, Emerson Etem was named to the team. Etem did not play in the game or the skills competition, again due to recall by the Ducks. If Wagner is not recalled, I think he will participate in puck control and passing skills competitions. The 2015 All-Star Classic takes place the weekend of January 25-26 in Utica, home of the Comets.
I have a new column up over at Puq today. In it I discuss the ramifications of the rumors regarding the Ducks leaving Norfolk.