PEE DEE SCOUTING REPORT
Entering Friday's game at home vs. the Lynx, the Pride were 1-2-0 under new coach Davis Payne, a former Greenville Grrrowl player and assistant coach who was hired Dec. 20. Payne takes over for GM Jack Capuano, who took over the team in November on an interim basis after the Pride fired coach Frank Anzalone after one-plus season. ... Club led by perennial all-star Dany Bousquet, who is third in the ECHL in scoring with 21 goals and 22 assists for 43 points. ... Third-year pro Casey Kesselring (12-20-32) is off to the best start of his career. ... Goalie Cory Cadden (9-7-0) is 14th in the ECHL with a 2.68 goals-against average. ... Trevor Demmans (5-18-23) is 10th in the league in defense scoring and leads the club with a plus-11 rating. ... Pride are third-least penalized team in league, averaging 19.9 PIMs a game. ... Team is 8-7-0 on the road. ... Power-play ranks eighth in the ECHL at 19.4 percent, while penalty kill is 16th at 80.1 percent.
Pee Dee - None reported. Augusta - F Louis Dumont (broken thumb) is on the 7-day IR; D Cal Benazic is on recall to IHL Manitoba; C Rob Bonneau is on loan to IHL Kansas City
The Lynx probably have seen the last of Rob Bonneau after the veteran center was signed by the Kansas City Blades of the International Hockey League on Thursday.
Blades general manager Doug Soetaert signed Bonneau after recently losing two of the team's centers to injury. But Soetaert, a former NHL goalie with the New York Rangers, said the 27-year-old Bonneau has a good chance of sticking with Kansas City for the balance of the season.
"We plan on using him in the lineup right away," said Soetaert from his cell phone in Winnipeg, Manitoba, where the Blades will face the Manitoba Moose and another former Lynx, defenseman Cal Benazic.
"Rob Bonneau is a guy who led the Milwaukee Admirals in scoring as a centerman last year. He should not be playing in the East Coast league."
His departure means the Lynx now are without two of their top five scorers. Forward Louis Dumont, tied for third on the club with 27 points, is out a few more weeks with a broken thumb. In just 21 games with the Lynx, Bonneau was fifth on the team in scoring with five goals and 17 assists for 22 points.
Bonneau, who played at UMass-Amherst when Lynx coach Scott MacPherson was an assistant there, and is a close friend of defenseman Tom O'Connor, signed with Augusta in early November during a time when the team was ravaged by injuries. Essentially, though, his stint in Augusta was a favor to MacPherson.
The 27-year-old Bonneau was released by the Springfield Falcons of the American Hockey League on Nov. 2 and joined the Lynx in Tallahassee two days later.
In signing with the Lynx, he turned down several lucrative offers to play in Europe because he did not have a valid passport, but most knew it was only a matter of time until an AHL or IHL team picked him up.
In 230 professional games, the Springfield, Mass., native, has scored 62 goals and tallied 119 assists for 181 points.
Prior to this season, Bonneau played one season in the ECHL, winning a Kelly Cup championship with the Hampton Roads Admirals in 1997-98. The 6-foot-1, 175-pounder scored the game-winning goal in all four of the Admirals' victories in the finals that year against Pensacola.
"We've had our eye on him a while," Soetaert said. "There's no question he can play at this level, and he's going to be a good addition to our club."
|Pee Dee Pride (16-14-1), at Augusta Lynx (13-15-3)|
When: 7:35 p.m.
Where: Augusta-Richmond County Civic Center
Tickets: Available (724-TICK)
Radio: WRDW-AM 16301480; WRFN-FM 93.1