|Drew Bagnall (left) is the Aeros' captain this year.|
Many of you know that Drew Bagnall was named captain. Perfect logical choice, since he is the most seasoned AHL veteran at this point. While there is tons of young skill, the Aeros don't have that 5- or 6-year player than can take over a game and will the team to win. Bagnall, like John Torchetti for that matter, is under the microscope with this team.
Last weekend's 0-for-2 performance, to me, was most disturbing because they only scored three goals 'with all that talent.' I don't know why, but I was expecting much higher scoring games. Maybe we'll see that this weekend. Defense is great, though. If Matt Hackett continues to allow two goals a game or less, the Aeros should be just fine.
But how long DOES it take for a new team like the Aeros to come together. For the answer, we asked Bagnall.
"I think that it really is a function of your leadership," said Bagnall. "A lot of times leaders are only as good as the followers, too, and the more that we can get those young guys to buy into the systems that we play, the talent is there without question with these young players."
Nice to see Bagnall put the onus on himself and the other more seasoned players. Many of you commented on the disorganization - especially on the power play - at the home opener, and I think Bagnall touched on that a bit when he said this:
"The question is just what they do without the puck, and the more accountable we hold them in practice and that comes from the coaching staff and us older guys, the better off we’ll be moving forward," added Bagnall. "We still have to toe the line, too, and contribute what we can."
Bagnall is not here to score goals; he's here to help Hackett and Darcy Kuemper keep the puck out of the net and to provide leadership. I think he'll make a great captain, but he'll only be as good as the team's record in the eyes of many fans. He knows that and wants to make sure the boys right the ship and get off to a better start.
"The biggest thing is coming together as a group," said Bagnall. "And the more you do things together, the quicker you’ll all come together.”