Tonight’s match up for the Huskies offers them the chance to accomplish many things at once. The first of which would be forgetting about an abysmal performance and elimination in the Beanpot opening round the Monday. More importantly, this inconsistent team has the opportunity to focus on the Hockey East playoffs and make a jump in the standings. Sixth place UNH (8-11-1 HE, 11-14-2 Overall) is just one point ahead of eighth place Northeastern with the same amount of games in hand.
Still, the Huskies are without talented forwards Steve Quailer (Sprained ACL/MCL) and Cody Ferriero (Torn ACL) for the contest, which forces Madigan to make some pretty tough decisions personnel-wise. The shorthanded Huskies need to weigh their options carefully, but after the loss to BC, it’s pretty clear to me who should start and who shouldn’t. Listen, the fans love the Dong (At least some of them do). But his frustrated performance in the Beanpot and subsequent shenanigans warrants his absence from this game, despite the size of the Whitt’s ice possibly complementing the Dong’s speed. Madigan has been holding his players accountable for their actions off the ice, and should apply the same process to on their ice performance and playing time. Hopefully the Huskies go all in one this one, and recognize which game in the next three days is important, and which one is an exhibition.