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Tailing the Komets

Here you go

After giving up on signing Mario Larocque earlier this summer, the Fort Wayne Komets are close to signing the defenseman General Manager David Franke said Monday.

Larocque, a 6-foot-4, 210-pound veteran, would give the Komets a boost of experience and toughness on the blue line. Last season he had 5 goals, 15 points and 187 penalty minutes in 46 games with Danbury.

``I think we're headed in the right direction, and that there's a real good chance that he's going to come on board on with us,'' Franke said. “Nothing is finalized yet, but we're close to getting something done with him.''

A first-round draft pick by Tampa Bay in 1996, Larocque, 28, has played most of his career in the International and American hockey leagues. He also played five games for the Lightning in 1998, and played for Komets coach Pat Bingham with Wheeling of the East Coast Hockey League in 2003-04.

``I thoroughly enjoyed my experience of being on the same team and pulling in the same direction with Mario,'' Bingham said. “I think he's a great team guy. He's always trying to give the team what it needs.''

The Komets acquired the rights to Larocque in the United Hockey League's dispersal draft after Danbury folded. Originally, the Komets felt they weren't going to be able to afford Larocque who wanted similar pay to what he received in Danbury. The Trashers folded after it was revealed they spent nearly three times as much as the UHL salary cap last season, causing the league to adopt a hard cap this summer.

``Mario came down on his demands, and we just explained to him where we were at money-wise with this hard cap,'' Franke said. “This is where he'd like to play and if we can get it done we're going to get it done.''

Part of Larocque's decision is because of whom the Komets already have signed. He's good friends with and a former teammate of player/assistant coach Bruce Richardson, has been a teammate with forward Daniel Goneau and he knows defenseman Guy Dupuis and goaltender Kevin St. Pierre. In fact, this week Larocque is working out with Richardson and Goneau at Richardson's pre-season camp on Montreal.

``When I signed here, I think that started to make sense for Mario,'' Richardson said. “I talked to Mario the other day, and he said, `I guess we'll probably play together again this year.' I think Mario respects me, and by me going there, he knows we're not going to have a lousy team. I think he put it all together, and it was a no-brainer.''

Franke said the Komets are currently working on a couple of other deals which may be announced late this week. He said that as the Oct. 2 opening of training camp gets closer, more players are starting to return his calls.

``It's getting a little late for players, and it's time for guys to make up their mind and decided I they want to play or sit,'' Franke said. “I think more players are going to decide they'd rather play.''

Posted in: Komets


Tue, 09/12/2006 - 9:19am

Hoss-typically the Komets hold off on showing the new jerseys until the first game of the season.

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 9:41am

There's no reason to get nasty with Justin. He's nailed me on more than his share over the years. He was probably out of town on another assignment.

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 9:57am

Just an FYI-former Komet backup Kelly Shields to play in the Netherlands this coming season.

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 10:01am

Aubin is a pretty good pick up, he is a tough kid that needs some work.

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 11:01am

Interesting rookie pickups. Martin Aubin is a big guy who was picked up for a few games in the LNAH. On the downside he only had 1 point in three years of hockey. With only 1 point as a forward concerns me, but obviously another part of his game must be there that allows him to keep playing. David Besner is almost on the opposite side of Aubin. Last season he played (which according to hockeydb was 04-05) he racked up an incredible 105 points in 45 games. This also concerns me as to how decent his defensive skills really are. I guess we'll find out within a month or two on both of these guys.

Is it just me or do the rookies thus far picked up by the Komets look to be a bit more promising than the rookies we've been bringing in in the last handful of seasons?

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 12:38pm

I wouldn't look at 105 points in 45 games and be scared about defensive play. Scorers score wherever they play. Maybe he just knows how to put it in the net.

Here's a 2004 article http://www.universitysport.ca/e/m_icehockey/story_detail.cfm?id=3694

Says he played with Fabien Laniel (Flint) Here's his hockeydb. He's a dman http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisplay.php3?pid%5B%5D=62356

So, looks like Laniel can score (as a dman). I bet Besner can play but we'll see.

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 1:04pm

Personnaly, if a line is so good ofensively that the other team can't get the puck then I think defense is moot, but, If I remember correctly, Bingham did say that his team would be defense first and use a transition game. So that means Besner would have to be able to play some D.

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 1:57pm

In junior hockey the Defense isn't that great. Lots of sloppy play and alot of scoring.

Welcome to the K's

Hit Somebody!!!
Tue, 09/12/2006 - 2:33pm

3 pickups today that sound good. Hope they work-out the way we all dream they will. I am definitely hockey starved at this point and I actually can't wait until the first pre-season game against Port Urine.

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 2:57pm

Its weird how hockey fans can't wait until preseason games but NFL fans and players hate the preseason.

Hit Somebody!!!
Tue, 09/12/2006 - 4:16pm

In our case though, we have no clue what our team looks like until we see them play. Plus we are half crazy being Komet Fans...ok all the way crazy.

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 4:44pm

No don't court yourself short, Hit.

Hit Somebody!!!
Tue, 09/12/2006 - 4:47pm

I am crazy...I have no idea what Super Fan just said?

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 5:25pm

I was hoping that Larocque would fill out to more than just 210. Oh well....

Now, if only Bingham will let them play and not put skirts on all on 'em....

Maybe, just MAYBE ....

Hit Somebody!!!
Tue, 09/12/2006 - 5:27pm

I am just short enough to be a physical presence on the 2006-2007 Komets. Although the tide is starting to turn on that rant. Us 5-foot something guys are well represented so far this off-season. Are they measuring these guys with or without their blades on? I still might be under 6 foot with. I mean...I know I am.

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 5:33pm

You don't amass the kind of penalty minutes Larocque has by NOT dropping the gloves.

Although Chaulk went ovwwer 100 PIM last year with 3 fights.

You think HE didn;t take some unnecessary penalties? Was't he like third in th eleague in minrs last year?

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 5:36pm

SCOUTS! And every one with a contract in their pocket!

They came here tnoight to scout the CHIEFS! The toughest team in the Federal League.

Not this bunch a ............. pansies.

(Commercial TV version)

Hit Somebody!!!
Tue, 09/12/2006 - 5:54pm

I hope he like....Larocque's The Jungle... like the Frankes were advertising all dang summer long.....MAN!

Tue, 09/12/2006 - 8:08pm

Laniel was a forward and did not play one shift on D last year in Flint. Laniel has a really promising future if he can rid the injury bug.

Depending on Besner's size, im sure he will a big time player for the Komets.

Flying V
Wed, 09/13/2006 - 10:42am

Remember this knucklehead

Flying V
Wed, 09/13/2006 - 10:42am

Remember this knucklehead

Wed, 09/13/2006 - 11:41am

For immediate release
September 13, 2006


Fort Wayne, IN --- The Komets announced Wednesday the addition of veteran right winger Bogdan Rudenko to the preseason roster.

Rudenko celebrates his 29th birthday today and hails from Novosibirsk, Russia. The veteran winger will be entering his 10th pro season this year and 4th in the UHL. Rudenko previously skated under the direction of Komet head coach Pat Bingham in 2000-01 with the UHL Eastern Conference Champion Asheville and advance to the 2001 UHL finals with a team second-best 8 assists and 13 points in 11 playoff games. Rudenko also skated in the UHL during the 2002-03 season registering a team fourth-best 34 goals and 65 points in 74 games with Adirondack. The Russian native skated juniors in the Ontario Hockey League from 1995-97. He made his rookie debut with Quad City in the UHL in 1997 and was voted to the 1997-98 UHL All-Rookie Team.

Last season Rudenko appeared in stints with Florida and Pensacola scoring 7 goals, 15 points and 67 penalty minutes in 37 ECHL games.

The Komets have also invited to camp goaltender Daniel Ljung. Ljung, 26 (la-JUNG), is a native of Sweden and played 4 seasons of collegiate hockey at Lawrence University (NCAAIII) in Wisconsin from 2002-2005. Ljung also was a member of the Capital District Selects of the Eastern Junior Hockey League during 1999-00.

With the additions of Rudenko and Ljung the Komet's preseason roster grows to 22 players including 13 forwards, 6 defensemen and 3 goaltenders.

Komets open camp Oct. 2.....head coach Pat Bingham opens a 2-week training camp Monday, Oct. 2 at the Coliseum. Three exhibition games, 2 at home and 1 on the road, are planned. The Komets will host Port Huron in a preseason tilt at the Coliseum Wednesday, Oct. 4. Then the Komets will face Kalamazoo in a home-and-home exhibition series starting at Fort Wayne Friday, Oct. 6. Saturday, Oct. 7 the Komets face the Wings at Wings stadium in the final pre-season tune-up. The Komets start the season on the road Friday, Oct. 13 at Rockford and will skate their 55th home opener Saturday, Oct. 21 against Quad City at 7:30pm. -2006-07 Komet schedule-

2006-07 Season Tickets on Sale.....2006-07 Komet season tickets are on sale at the Komet office at 1010 Memorial Way in Fort Wayne. Fans may call the Komet office for information at (260) 483-0011 or make inquiries via email at komets@komets.com. Season ticket information is also available at www.komets.com.

Wed, 09/13/2006 - 11:47am

Welcome to both; however, after looking at Rudenko's Stats, it seems he has a problem either staying healthy or being in the dog house because he hasn't played a lot of games in the last couple of years. I don't expect him to stick around.

Wed, 09/13/2006 - 12:05pm

Wrong, Greg. Check out the bottom of my latest post.

Wed, 09/13/2006 - 2:02pm

blake, according to the hockey data base he does have a hard time playing a full season except for the seasons you mentioned