By: Edward Dunn | Follow me @EdwardDunn71
With the 2021 AHL season finally, here, fans are asking the same thing. With all the Bruins moving up to the big club and the guys we lost, who do we have left for a run at the Calder Cup this year? We begin with who left the Prrrrrrrrrrrovidence Brrrrrrrruuuinns!!
There is a familiar voice in Boston
Yes, I am a huge fan of @DavidZibelli, the in-rink voice of the Providence Bruins, who is also my first roster move. Congratulations are in order for being called up to the TD Garden sharing the duties for 2021. With the Dunkin Donuts Center used as a testing facility, David was available, and Boston took little time ensuring we can have him while watching the Big Club. Now we will look at the on-ice participants for the Bruins Taxi Squad.
Riding Along With The Taxi Squad
The Taxi Squad is made up of four to six players that move between Providence and Boston at any one time. This allows the team to have people available during the pandemic by 5:00 PM game day. The benefit of the squad is they practice and stay with Boston in the event they are needed. Providence players on the squad currently include Dan Vladar, Urho Vaakanainen, Steven Kamfer, and Anton Blidh.
Riding The Elevator To The ECHL
Five players took the elevator down to the ECHL affiliates this offseason. Remaining with the Bruins are goaltenders Kyle Keyser and Martin Ouellette. Sean Bonar was signed by Calgary, Tom Marchin went to Nashville, and Scott Conway was picked up by Tampa Bay.
Lateral AHL Moves
We saw two players who both were unrestricted free agents take their talents elsewhere. Ryan Fitzgerald has been signed by Philadelphia playing for their affiliate Lehigh Valley. This is a team we normally play annually, but due to Covid will have to wait to reunite until next year. Alex Petrovic has been signed by Calgary, playing for their affiliate Stockton. Alex jumped conferences, so only a Calder Cup appearance by both teams will reunite him with his former team.
Here we find three former bruins crossing the Atlantic to find frozen pastures to share their talents. Wiley Sherman landed in Denmark to play this season. Peter Cehlarik and Brendan Gaunce decided to stay teammates and went to the Swedish Hockey League. Though far away from our home, their mark on the community fanbase will never be forgotten.
Maybe They Will Meet Again
Providence found one roster spot vacated by going up to the NHL as Maxime Lagace earned a place in Pittsburgh on their goaltender squad. My seven-year-old son Joey aspires to follow Max as a goalie and did just that. He made a B-Line to follow Max at the 2020 Skate With The Bruins. Max and Joey took a couple of laps, sharing his desire, and Max shared some pointers. When learning of his move to the Penguins, Joey said, “Well, at least he got the colors right.” It may not be long before we see Max visits the Bruins at the Garden.
In The Next Installment….
We found eleven total players left Providence after this past season and up to six more possibly riding along with the Taxi Squad. In the next installment, we will look at the newest members to the Providence Bruins that will fill their skates.
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