In nine games with the Milwaukee Admirals, rookie defenseman Marc Del Gaizo has one goal and two assists. These numbers may not spark any statistical joy, nor do they prove his ability to play both sides of the puck. However, it’s important to remember they only tell part of the story.
If you keep an eye on Del Gaizo during a game, you will see his offensive prowess on display. Del Gaizo has an ability to think on the fly and quickly change one play into another play, knowing his teammates will be there to help finish what he started.
A great example of this happened on November 7th against the Chicago Wolves on the power play.
Del Gaizo had an opportunity to slap the puck down the slot towards Chicago Wolves goaltender Eetu Makiniemi. Instead of shooting and having the puck possibly blocked by Wolves center Jack Drury, Del Gaizo opted to go a different route. As Del Gaizo lowered his stick, he pivoted his body and slapped the puck towards Milwaukee forward Matt Luff, who was on the boards by the left faceoff circle.
This set a play in motion that left Chicago’s penalty kill trying to figure out exactly where the puck was going to end up. The Wolves’ kill began chatting and pointing out where each player on their unit should be positioned. Three of them ended up trying to create a triangle to essentially box Luff in near the faceoff circle.. On the flip side, this allowed Admirals skaters Cole Schneider and Cole Smith to open up shop below the goal line and at the top of the crease. So, when Luff decided to shoot the puck towards the goal line, it created a beautiful play for them to squeak the puck into the net with little to no interference from the Wolves skaters.
If it wasn’t for Del Gaizo recognizing that it was too risky to take the shot, the play never would have happened, and it’s likely Milwaukee would not have scored on the power play.
Between the trust he has for his teammates and his smart thinking, Del Gaizo is well on the way towards having a successful rookie season.
Ep 12: Biting, Montreal, COVID, and Penguins Sale Updateby Full Press Coverage on December 1, 2021 at 5:52 pm
Mike, Jim, and Chris […]