It's been a rough week for Amerks defenseman Mike Weber. First, he returns to the lineup on Sunday after a two game suspension, only to carry his physical play into penalty box, costing his team two goals against.
"He just wanted to make an impact in his return," Cunneyworth said. "We want him physical and playing the body, but not that way."Then, he gets a call on Tuesday afternoon with news that his good friend Mickey Renaud had collapsed and died. Weber and Renaud were teammates last season in Windsor of the Ontario Hockey League.
"He was like a little brother to me," said Weber, a rookie defenseman for the Rochester Americans. Renaud, the son of former Amerks defenseman Mark Renaud, was captain of the Ontario Hockey League's Windsor Spitfires and Weber's teammate the past two seasons. He was drafted in the fifth round, 143rd overall, by the Calgary Flames in June. "You find yourself asking, 'Why?'" Weber said following practice on Tuesday. "He was my workout partner. Here's a healthy, 19-year-old kid, getting ready to sign a contract with Calgary, and he's gone in a second." Weber has asked for permission to attend Renaud's funeral and could miss Friday's home game against the Binghamton Senators. The Amerks are home tonight to play the Albany River Rats at 7:05 p.m. "It's all business (tonight)," Weber said. "He's a hockey player so he'd want me to play. He should have been right here in my shoes next season, playing his first pro season.USCHO is running an article about Bowling Green's goalie tandem of Freshman Nick Eno (2007, 7th round), and junior Jimmy Spratt (CAL). It's a pretty unique situation for a NCAA club to have two NHL draftees between the pipes. NHLers in waiting, Eno and Spratt have created a formidable duo in net
Eno, on the other hand, probably couldn't wait to escape his doomed fate with an Eastern Junior Hockey League team called the Green Mountain Glades. He finished his lone year in juniors with nine wins in 25 starts. "Last year [in juniors], we didn't have the best team, so there were a few times when I'd see 40 or 50 shots a night," Eno said. Even with that amount of pucks flying at him some nights, Nick Eno ranked in the top 10 in save percentage and goals against average in the EJHL last winter. Thus, when Eno started out 4-0 with the Falcons in 2007, and has now continued to a 10-6 mark with two weekends to go, it surely is a refresher for the freshman goalie.As expected, some suspensions were handed out after the melee at the end of the second period of Saturday's DU-UND contest. Chris Butler wasn't penalized in the fracas, but there's still a nice shot of him looking for a piece of the action in the Denver Post. The Niagara IceDogs recently held an open skate with the public that also featured a skills competition. Sabres 2007 second-rounder Drew Schiestel took home first place in the puck relay portion of the event. 2008 draftniks get out your clipboard: Alex Pietrangelo's slap shot clocked in at 96 MPH. Finally, don't look now, but Nathan Gerbe has some company in the national points-per-game race. Senior Ryan Cruthers of Robert Morris picked up three points at Bemidji over the weekend to tie him with the Sabres 2005 pick at 1.52 ppg. Michigan's Kevin Porter is right behind at 1.5 ppg. Gerbe will need to keep pace as #7 Boston College has a key home-and-home battle with #3 New Hampshire this weekend.