Condors Roster Set

Anton Slepyshev boarded the plane for Edmonton yesterday and with that the Bakersfield Condors roster was set for the coming season. Slepy played one game in Bakersfield, with an amazing six shots on goal. I don’t think he’ll be back and am certain more men will be heading north over the winter. It’s always good to have a starting point to reference during the season, so let’s talk about the roster in California.

CONDORS OPENING ROSTER 2017-18

  1. No. 2 LHD Ben Betker. Gigantic blue (6.06, 228) is 23. He has good mobility for a player his size, but is getting overrun by the oncoming defensemen. Did not play in the opening game.
  2. No. 3 LHD Dillon Simpson. One of the feature defenders opening night, he’ll no doubt play a lot and could serve as mentor to one of the young righties. He lined up with Ryan Mantha in game one, played a lot and had three shots on goal. He might be an early recall option.
  3. No. 4 LHD Keegan Lowe. He started Friday night with Ethan Bear as his partner, eventually checking down (Caleb Jones moved up). He is in the same general area of the roster as Simpson and covers off much of the same territory, we’ll see how each man is used by coach Gerry Fleming throughout the season.
  4. No. 5 RHD Mark Fayne. Veteran was partnered with Caleb Jones early in last night’s game, that’s a good match for the youngster and also helps Fayne (Jones is a fast train).
  5. No. 6 LHD Caleb Jones. Picked up an assist on the only goal scored by the Condors, ending up being paired with fellow rookie Ethan Bear. Jones is one of the feature rookies in Bakersfield and really earned notice with his NHL preseason during early fall.
  6. No. 9 R Jesse Puljujarvi. Played a key role in the only goal on Friday night and posted five shots on goal. Both are great arrows, his line (Laleggia, Malone) had 16 shots on goal between them. I’d really like to see a more skilled center for Puljujarvi.
  7. No. 10 LC Joe Gambardella. He’s my bet to draw in now that Slepyshev is back in Edmonton, Gambardella had a nice cup of coffee in the AHL last spring but was not impressive in camp. One of the more interesting forward prospects in Bakersfield, he has more skill than Malone.
  8. No. 12 L Ryan Hamilton. AHL veteran (minor league contract) needs to stay healthy this season, the Condors are not strong on LW this winter.
  9. No. 15 L Mitch Callahan. He’s a natural RW but the Condors need him to play portside. Callahan can play in all three disciplines and score consistently at the AHL level.
  10. No. 17 L Joey Laleggia. Playing on the No. 1 line last night, Laleggia had six shots in the first game Friday night. Great production, hopefully he can cash at the same rate as one year ago.
  11. No. 18 RC Josh Currie. The best AHL-only contract on the roster, he centered Ryan Hamilton and Anton Slepsyhev in the first game. Got three shots on goal, spent time as JP’s center one year ago.
  12. No. 20 RD Ryan Mantha. Impressive training camp resulted in an opening night role for the Condors. He played ahead of more experienced players like Ziyat Paigin and Ben Betker, that’s a tell.
  13. No. 21 RC Chad Butcher. Rode an outstanding week in Penticton into an extra look at main camp and received an opening night role as 4C with the Condors. He’s very skilled and could be the next Josh Winquist.
  14. No. 22 LC Brad Malone. Five shots in Game One is impressive, but Malone is not a strong offensive option at the AHL level. He had 20 points in 52 AHL games last year.
  15. No. 23 L Braden Christoffer. Got the start at 4L in Game One, the LW slot is not strong this year but my guess is Evan Polei pushes him.
  16. No. 24 RD Ethan Bear. Scored his first pro goal on Friday night, played a prominent role and he’s off to a good start. He and Jones appear to be the most promising of the four horsemen.
  17. No. 25 L Greg Chase. The Condors website lists him as LW, makes sense based on need. Chase did not play in the first game, I think he along with Betker, Christoffer and Kyle Platzer are going to have to hurry hard to get a second contract with the organization.
  18. No. 27 R Dave Gust. I’m beginning to wonder if he exists.
  19. No. 28 LC Grayson Downing. He was -3 opening night, centering a line with Mitch Callahan and Ty Rattie.
  20. No. 32 LD Ziyat Paigin. Jason Gregor spoke to Peter Chiarelli a week ago and the general manager mentioned some struggles. Gerry Fleming didn’t play him in Game One, and now we wait for Thursday. He arrived in North America with some buzz.
  21. No. 34 G Nick Ellis. He had a tough opening night based on numbers, Ellis is a good NHL prospect.
  22. No. 36 R Patrick Russell. One of the real surprises in main camp, he got the start in the first game on the fourth line. He got three shots on goal, could move up.
  23. No. 38 L Evan Polei. He is a talented player who could climb up this depth chart over the season. Will need to be patient.
  24. No. 39 R Ty Rattie. A quiet first game (one shot, two penalties), I think he needs a strong center option than Grayson Downing. We’ll see. Bakersfield probably adds a veteran center during the season if the pivots struggle.
  25. No. 40 G Eddie Pasquale. Uncertain what the goalie rotation will look like, he is very capable.

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8 Responses to "Condors Roster Set"

  1. OriginalPouzar says:

    I liked how the D were deployed in game – each pair had a rookie and a veteran. I’m sure It won’t be long before Paigin gets a game.

    I know Bear and Jones ran the PP in exhibition but am not sure if that’s how they deployed for the game – Bear did have the PP goal.

    I wish there was a more offensive centre for Jesse but maybe he will prove to drive the line.

  2. Frank the dog says:

    I was not at all surprised that yesterday game was lost. I would be more worried now If last years team had not bounced baxk after losses.

  3. Lowetide says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    I liked how the D were deployed in game – each pair had a rookie and a veteran.I’m sure It won’t be long before Paigin gets a game.

    I know Bear and Jones ran the PP in exhibition but am not sure if that’s how they deployed for the game – Bear did have the PP goal.

    I wish there was a more offensive centre for Jesse but maybe he will prove to drive the line.

    It was a weird night for pairings, Caleb Jones ended up with Dillon SImpson on the Jankowski goal. It’ll come into view as we roll along.

  4. OriginalPouzar says:

    Tough to see the overall picture after just one game, especially with such a large roster – Paigin will need to play soon, Betker as well.

    I guess injuries to the big club will also allow more ice for those guys when they happen.

  5. Lloyd B. says:

    Chris Colinsworth may be the best color guy in all sports. Of course working with Michaels helps.

    For my money they are the best team covering pro sports.

  6. The Concept JDî says:

    I’m beginning to suspect that the President’s Choice Turkey Loaf contains much less tryptophan than a real turkey does.

  7. Pescador says:

    God I love Ham

  8. Soup Fascist says:

    Me too. Who didn’t love old number 8.

    But Warren Moon was still the greatest QB to wear green and gold.

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