With their playoff hopes all but gone, and the ECHL trade deadline offering one last chance to re-shape the roster, the Reign made two trades before noon Friday.
The consequences of last Saturday’s benches-clearing ECHL brawl came to fruition Friday.
Fifteen individuals – including both head coaches – and both the Florida Everblades and Reading Royals organizations received supplemental discipline from the league.
Former Reign assistant coach Greg Poss, now the Everblades’ head coach, was suspended for Friday night’s game against the Kalamazoo Wings. Former Reign defenseman Mike Egener, now the Everblades’ captain, was suspended three games – Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Both were fined undisclosed amounts by the league.
I was able to find one video of the brawl on YouTube. The quality is poor and it’s five minutes long:
Woody Wommack, friend of this blog and Florida Everblades beat writer, has the reaction on NaplesNews.com:
“I have a different opinion than the league,” Poss said. “When our guy gets hit over the head with a stick off the bench; they started the whole thing, why do we get so many games?”
Poss added that the entire experience surrounding the brawl may lead to him handling things differently in the future.
“It’s going to lead to us protecting ourselves we’re not going to wait for the league to protect us because they’re not going to do it,” Poss said. “We’re going to have to take matters into our own hands. Next time, maybe the right thing to do is to clear the bench.”
Mike Egener, whose 11 goals last season led all Reign defensemen, has signed with the ECHL’s Florida Everblades.
Egener, who also led the Reign in penalty minutes last season (189 in 65 games), is reunited in Florida with Greg Poss, the Blades’ new head coach who served as a volunteer assistant with the Reign last season.
A former second-round draft pick of the Tampa Bay Lightning, the 24-year-old Egener returned to North America last year after playing a partial season in Sweden. He possessed the hardest slapshot on the team, but didn’t find his scoring touch until the second half of season. He finished with 18 assists and 29 points in addition to a plus-9 rating — second on the team.
The Reign will miss Egener’s physical presence, which often led him to the penalty box. The 6-4, 213-pound defenseman finished eighth in the league in penalty minutes.
Left a message with Egener earlier, and will update with his comments when we get ’em …