SEASON 6 PROFILE: GENEVA GENERALS

city Geneva

GM: Andy Rolling  (4th GM in team’s history)

Coach: Guy Boucher (replaced Darryl Sutter before Season 6, who replaced Joel Quenneville after Season 3)

Last season: 18th overall, out of the playoffs

Ins and Outs (Season 5 to Season 6)

Out:  Ilya Nikulin (free agent), Rickard Wallin (free agent), Nikita Nikitin (free agent), Erik Cole (free agent), Nicklas Grossman (free agent), Eric Brewer (retired)

In: Jason Garrison (free agent), Gerhard Unterluggauer (free agent),  Carl Gunnarsson (free agent), Jay Bouwmeester (free agent), Dany Heatley (free agent), Victor Rask (draft), Rickard Rakell (draft), Michael Hutchinson (draft), Brandon Carlo (draft)

In Place (Key players signed past Season 6)

Ondrej Pavelec, G; Frederik Andersen, G; Sergei Mozyakin, C: Valeri Nichushkin, RW; David Desharnais, C

3qs   

 
Three Questions

1. How is old Geneva doing these days? The first champs aren’t old anymore. General Manager Andy Rolling has successfully turned the team from a group of veterans riding down the mountainside to a bunch of men ready to do some climbing. Today, only three Geneva forwards are older than 30 years of age.  Five forwards who are younger than 25 are vying for playing time with the big club, and later in the year, Dylan Larkin, 19, will join the team with perhaps the best attributes of any current rookie in the NHL. On defense, all the starters are of the ripe age – I didn’t say “ripe old age” – of 30 to 33 years old. And in goal, 26-year-old Frederik Andersen and 29-year-old Ondrej Pavelec are anxious to get the season started. So the aging Generals team is officially gone. Look for Geneva to start an upward climb this season. One issue that threatened to stall their ascent is leadership. Mike Fisher returns and he was an assistant captain last season, but the team didn’t have a bonafide captain-type guy. On Thursday, they signed Jay Bouwmeester and Dany Heatley to address that problem.

2. Does is seem Geneva’s defense corps is new and improved?  The biggest change fans will notice when the Generals take the ice will be along the blue line. Eric Brewer retired and Ilya Nikulin and Nikita Nikitin left via free agency. Rolling, who oodles of cap space, spent on defensemen in the free agent market, signing four established players in Jason Garrison, Gerhard Unterluggauer, Carl Gunnarsson and Jay Bouwmeester. That should be an instant improvement. Two-time all-star Dennis Wideman is the best Dman on the team and he will join Garrison, Unterluggauer and Gunarsson in some combination to make up the top four. They can all skate pretty well, they’re durable, and they offer a very good dose of hockey sense and experience. Karel Rachunek has some deficiencies, but he is the fastest skater on the blue line and he’ll see a lot of powerplay minutes. He’ll also team with Bouwmeester – who played in just 37 games last season with Edinburgh – on the third pairing.

3. How will Andersen do in goal ? Let’s stay on the defensive side of the game while we let Sergei Mozyakin and David Desharnais work on generating offense. The team was third worst in the league in allowing shots on goal, but only 10th worst in goals against. That should tell you their goaltending was better than their team defense. The additions on defense should be able to cut down on goals against and that would be good news for Andersen and Pavelec. But there is a worrying aspect to Andersen’s statistics. He had a very good goals against average of 2.95 and a save percentage of 90.8 last season in his first season as the Generals’ number one goalie. But the team faded in the end and missed the playoffs by a point. Andersen was part of the swoon. And the Danish goalie had better numbers when he played half as many games as a rookie the season before. Is that just a fluke or does it mean the more he plays, the less success he has? Because Pavelec has yet to show he’s a top tier goalie, Geneva fans hope Andersen is able to sustain the form that made him a EURO all-star at last season’s halfway mark. We’ll know about 82 games from now whether there is indeed something to the theory of diminishing returns regarding the young goalie.

History

Season   Place        PTS        PP %      PK %      SPG        SAPG     GPG     GAPG    PIM

Season 5               18             80           15.0          85.1        27.22     32.49    2.85   3.28    6.67

Season 4              18             80            15.5          83.4       26.29    32.51   2.72     3.28     9.46

Season 3              17             82             17.1         83.8       29.01    30.28    3.15    3.38     8.83

Season 2              10            96              18.9         82.8       31.94    29.30   3.39    2.99    10.68

Season 1              1               123              21.4        83.6        32.16    27.72    3.99    2.77    8.85

Top Draft picks

Season 1: Kari Lehtonen, G, current age 33. Games played: 327; Save Pct. 90.0

Season 2: none

Season 3: none

Season 4: Frederik Andersen, G, age 26. GP: 97; save pct. 90.9

Season 5: Sergei Mozyakin, C, age 23. GP 79; Pts 51; -18

Season 6: Victor Rask, C, 21.

Trade History

Season 1 (picks without years listed are from initial draft)

Traded Round 15 pick (used to draft Ryan Ellis) , Round 25 pick  (Ben Lovejoy) and 2013 Round 1 pick (Jason Krog) to Paris for Dennis Wideman

Traded Round 8 pick (Olli Jokinen), Round 10 pick (Petr Sykora) and 2013 Round 2 pick (Ryan Murray) to Dublin for Round 7 pick (Chris Kunitz), Round 22 pick (Bryan Allen) and $250,000

Traded Round 17 pick (Tomas Kopecky) and 2014 Round 1 pick (Michael Stone) to Bratislava for Round 8 pick (David Desharnais) and Round 19 pick (Greg Zanon)

Traded Round 13 pick (Marcus Kruger) and Round 14 pick (Mark Scheifele) to Athens for Round 9 pick (Nick Foligno)

Traded Alex Chiasson to Minsk for Vernon Fiddler and $1 million

Traded Brian Dumoulin to Minsk for Round 21 pick (Raffi Torres)

Traded Matt D’Agostino, 2014 Round 2 pick (Andrei Loktionov) and $250,000 to Oslo for Justin Williams

Traded 2013 Round 3 pick (Scott Glennie), 2014 Round 3 pick (Tommy Wingels) and $1.5 million to Bern for Nicklas Backstrom (goalie)

Season 2 

Traded Justin Williams, Ryan Malone and Jeff Woywitka to Prague for Thomas Vanek and Mike Weaver

* seem to missing one trade in this period

Season 3

Traded Michael Del Zotto to Minsk for Valeri Nichushkin, Ilya Nikulin and Sergei Kostitsyn

Season 4

Traded Kari Lehtonen to Edinburgh for Ondrej Pavelec, 2016 Round 1 pick (later traded) and 2017 Round 2 pick

Season 5

Traded Chris Kunitz and 2016 Round 1 (later traded to Copenhagen – Morten Madsen) pick to Bratislava for 2016 Round 1 pick (Bud Holloway)

Season 6

After Season 6 started: Traded Sergei Mozyakin to Belfast for Nazem Kadri, Vladislav Kamenev and 2020 Round 1 pick

Signed Chris Butler (free agent)

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