IceCaps getting it done

IceCaps' starting goaltender Peter Mannino, who spent some time up with the Winnipeg Jets, makes a saves against the Portland Pirates in AHL actions. Photo by Andy Veilleux, courtesy of The Muse.

While the Winnipeg Jets are certainly not tearing up the NHL, their farm team is having a serious go in the AHL.  

The newly-established St. John's IceCaps (11-2-3) have taken the AHL by storm in their inaugural season, currently sitting in first place in the Eastern Conference. Actually, they are first place in the entire league.

While veteran Jason King acknowledges they are a "veteran team," the story has been more about the team's depth than anything. Captain Jason Jaffray, who has helped pace the team offensively this season with 12 points in 15 games, was called up to the Jets on Saturday. 

The team still found a way to win Sunday's game without their captain, and without injured forward Riley Holzapfel, who has 9 points in 14 games.

While most teams, especially in the revolving door that AHL rosters can be, can manage to fill in for two forwards, consider this: The IceCaps are currently without the services of four of their top defensemen. Paul Postma (who has just been sent back down recently), Artus Kulda, Brett Festerling and Mark Flood have all been with the big club for at least a few games this season. 

The Icecaps were without all five of these players over the weekend (Jaffray played saturday's game, recording a hat-trick, before being called up), and the team still defeated the Connecticut Whale in both games.

The team is currently on a six game winning streak, and eight game point streak, despite the revolving door roster.

Now that is the meaning of depth.