Nashville Predators: Midseason Review for the Milwaukee Admirals

CLEVELAND, OH - JANUARY 03 : Milwaukee Admirals left wing Anthony Richard (90) celebrates with Milwaukee Admirals left wing Daniel Carr (29), Milwaukee Admirals left wing Rem Pitlick (16), Milwaukee Admirals defenceman Matt Donovan (46), and Milwaukee Admirals defenceman Jeremy Davies (76) after scoring to tie the game with 1:55 left in the third period of the American Hockey League game between the Milwaukee Admirals and Cleveland Monsters on January 3,2020, at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in Cleveland, OH. (Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - JANUARY 03 : Milwaukee Admirals left wing Anthony Richard (90) celebrates with Milwaukee Admirals left wing Daniel Carr (29), Milwaukee Admirals left wing Rem Pitlick (16), Milwaukee Admirals defenceman Matt Donovan (46), and Milwaukee Admirals defenceman Jeremy Davies (76) after scoring to tie the game with 1:55 left in the third period of the American Hockey League game between the Milwaukee Admirals and Cleveland Monsters on January 3,2020, at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in Cleveland, OH. (Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /
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The All-Star break is here for the AHL.  This is a good time for the affiliate of the Nashville Predators to get refreshed for the remainder of the season.

For the Milwaukee Admirals, something special is brewing. It could be 50 years in the making. This team has the potential to bring us new records and expectations unlike any other team in history if they remain focused.

Incredibly the Admirals have the best record in the AHL with 72 points, which is good for a ten-point margin over the next team in the standings. Their division lead in the standings sits at 12 points, and they have an astounding goal differential of plus-60.

There may be ton of inconsistency and reasons for concern on the NHL level, but the Admirals are the exact opposite from the Predators so far in terms of performance and living up to expectations. They’re actually exceeding expectations, you can argue.

All-Star standouts

Before we get into the thick of things of the review, the Milwaukee Admirals were represented exceptionally well during the skills portion and All-Star games.

Alexandre Carrier took place in the second race portion of the puck control relay and scored a goal in game six.  Connor Ingram had the most saves, with nine, in the rapid-fire challenge and had one of the best saves of the night during his portion of the All-Star game.

Yakov Trenin originally had been voted to play in the games, however since he is with the Nashville Predators, he did not participate in the event.  Nevertheless, Ingram and Carrier made the Milwaukee organization and its fans proud of the jerseys they represented.

How the AHL season is unfolding

The season is 45 games of the way complete with 31 games remaining.  The All-Star break gives us a good chance to reflect on what the team has done so far and what we can look forward to ahead.

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To this point, we have seen numerous positive takeaways to reinforce how well the Admirals have been playing.  Let’s take a moment to review the individual and team statistics thus far.

Individually, Daniel Carr is leading in goals scored with 17 and in points with 36 through 33 games played.

Averaging over a point per game, we are getting exactly what we need in offensive efforts from Carr. He saw some brief time up in the NHL with the Predators earlier in the year, but has since found his place for the Admirals.

Behind him, Cole Schneider has put up 30 points in 36 games played and continues to be an important piece to the puzzle for the depth. Championship-caliber teams always need solid depth to help them reach the pinnacle.

Trenin is second on the team in goals with 15 and has 29 points in 24 games.  He’s doing everything right on both ends of the ice and because of his efforts, he was called up to the Predators. He’s made his solid case for remaining on the NHL level for the rest of the season.

On the defensive side of the puck, Carrier is starting to show that he could deserve his NHL call up next year.  He is showing a more well-rounded game this year compared to his previous years.  Four goals and 28 points in 38 games puts him in the lead for points among defensemen.

Big improvements being made

One of the major differences that makes this team so good compared to previous years is the tandem of Connor Ingram and Troy Grosenick in net.  In 24 games played, Ingram has a 2.04 goals against, .929 save percentage and 15 wins.

Grosenick is right behind him with a 2.22 goals against, .922 save percentage and 16 wins in 23 games played. Both of these guys are making the Admirals one of the toughest teams in the AHL.

The life of an AHL goalie is sometimes a short one as Milwaukee has shown going through six goalies in the last five years.  Ingram, who was traded from the Lightning for a 2021 at the beginning of the year, is looking like a potential future candidate  in Nashville.

Grosenick should hopefully stick around for some time as well.  He’s aging and on his last year in his contract, but still has what it takes to give the organization depth if needed.

With how great these goaltenders are playing, it makes you wonder if there’s any chance of the Predators calling one of them up, most likely Ingram, at some point. The Predators are struggling mightily in this area, but it’s for a collection of reasons.

As a team, Milwaukee has never looked this good in nearly all aspects of the game, except for some penalty troubles here and there.  With a record of 31-8-4-2t, he team sits in first place in the AHL standings in points and winning percentage.

On the penalty kill, the Admirals currently sit 6th in the league with just over 84 percent.  Impressively, they are standing strong in first place on the power play with a 28.6 percent conversion rate.

Roster changes

Changes to personnel have been quite minimal, however as a farm team changes are always expected to happen.  Colin Blackwell, Trenin and Jared Tinordi have seen the most time being called up to the NHL.

NHL call-ups have created a pathway for players like Joe Pendenza, Arvin Atwal and Zach Magwood to find playing time in Milwaukee.  Only one trade has occurred on the team this season, departing Laurent Dauphin to the Laval Rocket for Michael McCarron.

Examples of this team’s success comes from the depth of their chemistry.  When someone gets called up or even traded, they still have a connection up and down the lines that produce every night.

The level of command has been consistent throughout the year.  Players are rarely caught out of position making the flow of play easy for everyone involved.  This in turn creates a continuous momentum push for the Admirals that turn into goals or high-risk chances for the Admirals to score.

The NHL trade deadline is coming up very fast.  As the Predators still play hot and cold hockey, it is unforeseen if they will be sellers at the deadline.  The Admirals need to continue to focus on their games ahead regardless of what changes happen.

The Admirals have the potential to make it deep into the playoffs.  Coach Karl Taylor has been a mastermind managing this team leading them confidently through all forks in the road.

The Milwaukee Admirals started their first two games of the remaining 31 this past weekend.  In both games the Admirals obliterated their opponents scoring seven goals each game putting them at a dominant record of 33-8-4-2.

Next. Predators Miss Out on Golden Opportunity vs. Vegas. dark

Well-rested and setting the pace for the league, the Admirals are on pace to what could eventually lead to a record year for the organization. The future looks very bright for the Nashville Predators as their AHL affiliate is ripping through their respective season.