3 Takeaways from Manitoba Moose 6-2 Loss vs. Admirals

It was a rematch of the first round in 2022, which sees the Manitoba Moose and Milwaukee Admirals meeting yet again. Last year, the Admirals took the best-of-five series in Game 5.

When asked if it was just another series or a full-on rematch, captain Jimmy Oligny explained that, “It’s definitely a rematch. It’s a little personal almost. We want to get back at them and last year we felt like we deserved a little bit better.”

Related: Manitoba Moose Struggle in Recent 8-Game Home Stand

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In Game 1, the Moose were not able to take the first step in avenging last season as they fell 6-2 to the Admirals in what was a blowout on home ice.

The Moose Goaltending Needs to Bounce Back in Game 2

The Moose were forced to start Evan Cormier since Arvid Holm and Oskari Salminen were up with the Jets until late Friday afternoon and then turned to Holm after Cormier gave up three goals on the first seven shots. Then, Holm proceeded to let in the next three goals on nine shots. It was a nightmare performance for their goaltending tandem, and it’s one that lost them the game.

Arvid Holm Manitoba Moose
Arvid Holm, Manitoba Moose (Jenae Anderson / The Hockey Writers)

Head coach Mark Morrison told reporters that the scoring chances in this game were “2-2 after the first, and 4-4 after the second.” Given that the Moose outshot the Admirals 18-6 in the third period, that gives off the impression that this game would have been a lot closer had they received a few big saves. The Moose outshot the Admirals 37-24 in this game, which shows that without the sluggish start, the result of this game would have likely been closer.

“We’re not going to pin it on one player,” Morrison explained. Even though the goaltending was subpar, the Moose will need to wipe the slate clean and look for revenge in what is now a must-win Game 2. Morrison said, “It’s a best-of-five for a reason” and his team needs to be better in front of the goaltending on Sunday, April 30.

Declan Chisholm Returned to the Lineup

Declan Chisholm explained that it was a “big relief” to finally shed the non-contact jersey and return to the lineup. Oligny told reporters, “He’s a huge piece on the back end, so that’s going to give us a big boost offensively, too. He’s a big part of that and we’re happy to have him back.”

While his return was welcomed, the result did not follow. The team as a whole looked rusty as the Admirals took advantage of the Moose defence core on the forecheck and turned pucks over in their favour.

He was paired alongside Leon Gawanke, which has been the case for the entirety of the 2022-23 season. That pairing was a lone bright spot for the Moose in this game, as they controlled play for the majority of their time on the ice.

Milwaukee’s Power Play Continued Dominance

Morrison explained exactly why Milwaukee’s power play is so dangerous earlier in the week when he stated, “They have great net frontage, they have somebody strong in every position, they’re strong all over and they have two units.”

In Game 1, that unit went 2-for-3 and looked dangerous. When asked about it, Daniel Torgersson explained that his team needs to pick up the slack and “not take stupid penalties.” These penalties resulted in opportunities for the Admirals that won them the game, and the Moose know that they need to do a better job in that department moving forward.

Kiefer Sherwood Milwaukee Admirals
Kiefer Sherwood, Milwaukee Admirals (Jenae Anderson / The Hockey Writers)

Although the Admirals won Game 1 in a blowout fashion, this series is far from over. The Moose should be able to attain better goaltending, and Game 2 is shaping up to be the biggest game of the season for the Moose, as heading to Milwaukee down 2-0 in the series likely means the end of their season. They will be looking to take their third-period dominance and carry that momentum into Game 2. That game will be played at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 30 at Canada Life Centre.

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