Samuel Bolduc, Bridgeport Islanders, AHL (2nd round, 2019)
After his white-hot start to the season, third-year defenseman Samuel Bolduc may be beginning to cool down. Bolduc, who was at one point riding a seven-game point streak, has failed to register a point in his last three games. Coincidentally, the B-Isles have also lost each of those three games.
Realistically, there was no way for Bolduc to keep up the pace he was operating. Averaging over a point-per-game, Bolduc was bound to come back to earth at some point. Even though three games without scoring seems like a lifetime to the 21-year-old, he has still displayed his offensive capabilities during the season's early stages.
Even without his point production, Bolduc is still arguably the team's top defenseman and quarterbacks the powerplay. While he may not be impacting the game as much with the puck, he is more valuable in defending it.
Bolduc has recorded 12 points (two goals, ten assists) in Bridgeports 12 games this season and is currently in third place in AHL defenseman scoring.
Ruslan Iskhakov, Bridgeport Islanders, AHL (2nd Round, 2018)
Like Bolduc, rookie forward Ruslan Iskhakov had a down week after a torrid start to his professional career in North America. Iskhakov had likely his two worst games of the season during the B-Isles trip to Hershey.
Failing to register a single shot-on-goal in two games and leaving with a -3 rating Iskhakov was exploited defensively and unable to get going with the puck on his stick.
The Moscow native was on the ice for three of the four goals allowed by Bridgeport for what could be a wake-up call. In this league, you cannot be a one-way player. Even with his -3 rating for the week, Iskhakov is still +2 on the season, but that could be due to the incredible offensive output he was producing to even things out. It will be interesting to see for the remainder of the season how Iskhakov's play in the defensive end progresses while being stymied on offense.
Iskhakov is still top-10 in AHL points with 14 points (four goals, ten assists) in 12 games.
William Dufour, Bridgeport Islanders, AHL (5th Round, 2019)
William Dufour is a natural goal scorer, plain and simple. His power and placement with his shot have the potential to make him a big-time goal scorer at any level. The question with Dufour is how his game looks when the goals aren't coming to him so efficiently.
Like the rest of his team, Dufour struggled last week, being held scoreless in Bridgeport's two games, only registering two shots in each contest. Even when he is not scoring, B-Isles head Coach Brent Thompson wants to see him get the puck toward the net. In juniors, it wasn't rare to see Dufour put up 10+ shots per game. Now, that kind of output isn't maintainable at the professional level, but this is Dufour's bread and butter and what's likely going to get him minutes in the NHL.
Not the most prominent skater, Dufour has found ways to makeup for his lack of quickness by using his 200 lbs. frame. The hits seem to keep coming from Dufour - a good sign that his work ethic isn't lacking when not finding the score sheet.
in 12 games, Dufour sits at four goals and one assist on the season.