Season 4 Episode 25 of the Chasing MacNaughton Podcast from Tech Hockey Guide; Don Granato?. This week, THG’s fearless leader Tim Braun was absent from the podcast so Rob Gilreath got to fulfill his fantasy of being a podcast host. Dustin Lindstrom and Matt Cavender joined Rob as usual. This week’s episode is a bit of a mash up episode featuring content from previous episodes including extended conversation with CCHA Commissioner Don Lucia and the guys discussing Tony Granato being fired as the head coach at the University of Wisconsin. Rob, Dustin and Matt did record some new content for the week where they recapped Tech’s semi-final playoff game against Northern Michigan, discussed where Tech sits in the Pairwise rankings and where Tech is likely to travel to in the NCAA Tournament.
Why did it have to be those guys?
Matt thought that the game against Northern Michigan was the 2nd worst game that Tech has played all year. He also though the way in which the regular season ended was very heartbreaking for the Huskies. All of the guy gave credit to Northern Michigan goaltender Beni Halasz and the way he played against Tech. Matt brought up the way Chris Lipe has been playing since returning from injury and discussed two mistakes Lipe made against Northern Michigan. Rob talked about the breakaways and stretch passes that Tech gave up being the most frustrating part to him. The guys also gave kudos to the crowd at the MacInnes for the game and how loud they were and the atmosphere they created.
Who cares if we lost, we moved up!
Dustin talked about how Tech moved up in the Pairwise rankings despite their loss to Northern Michigan. Dustin also pointed out that there are no scenarios in which Tech does not make the NCAA Tournament. Dustin shared the possible seedings that Tech can get in the Tournament and what it means for who they may play. The guys discussed the possible regional locations that Tech is likely to travel to, as well as other teams within the NCAA Tournament field. All of the guys had a good chuckle that there will be a team in the mid-40s in the Pairwise who makes the NCAA Tournament because of the Atlantic Hockey auto bid.
Yer outta here!
Last week with Tim Rappleye the guys discussed the University of Wisconsin firing their head coach Tony Granato. A large part of the conversation revolved around the guys discussing the appeal of the Wisconsin job and where it stacks up against other coaching opportunities. The guys also discussed who they think will throw their hat in the ring for the Wisconsin job. Tim Rappleye talked about teams making safe choices when hiring head coaches. The guys discussed the Big 10 Conference being a meat grinder of a conference to play in.
Extended conversation with The Don
Parts of this week’s episode included content from the guys’ conversation with CCHA Commissioner Don Lucia. Tim asked Don for his thoughts on Alaska making the NCAA Tournament with an at large bid. The guys discussed the improvement in officiating since the CCHA formed and Don talked about the lengths Kevin Langseth (CCHA Director of Officiating) goes to ensure that officials are doing the best job they can. Don also talked about a national shortage of officials and brought up one instance where an NHL level official was injured and the call-ups affected every level down of play down to the Pee Wee level.
A question from THG’s own Jonathan Zamaites was answered. The question asked why the introduction process into the CCHA was different for Augustana than St. Thomas. Don talked about getting the conference to eight team with St. Thomas as well as Augustana wanting to ease into the conference and the Division I level. Don also discussed the CCHA wanting to add teams which are committed to hockey.
The last part of the conversation with Don revolved around how officials are chosen for the playoff series. Don talked about the process and possibly avoiding pairings that might be more confrontational based on recent history. The guys talked about possibly changing officials for a third game in a series. The guys discussed the referees making calls based on the impact of the play versus the letter of the law.
This week’s cut content for Patrons is approximately 7 minutes long. The guys discussed the CCHA All-Rookie team that was announced on Tuesday. There was a discussion on which players Northern Michigan is losing this offseason. The guys gave their picks for the upcoming CCHA Tournament championship game between Northern Michigan and Minnesota State.
For additional information and more episode liner notes, check out our episode overview on Tech Hockey Guide. To make sure we can afford all our fancy equipment we purchased for the podcast and the THG website in general, please check out our Patreon page and consider joining. Patrons at our Black Level or above receive an authentic MTU jersey patch and access to extra podcast content including extended versions of our other episodes. This week’s extended version is about 34 minutes.
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Follow us on twitter at ChasingMacPod. Join our Discord server for discussions covering Michigan Tech hockey and more. You can submit questions through our email address, ChasingMac@techhockeyguide.com. Don’t forget to subscribe wherever you get your podcasts. Please rate and review to help us reach more people, and tell your friends. Please check out Jonathan Zamaites’ series previews every Friday, Mike Anleitner’s Old Dog in Texas column every Wednesday, Zach Aufdemberge’s Analytics With Augie and Nathaniel Brose’s nationwide hockey columns. Also, keep an eye out for new recruiting articles that Tim Braun writes occasionally. As always, special thanks to our patron saint Doc McResin for his generous donation to get this thing running, we hope you enjoy. Also, thanks to The Thank You Notes for all the bumpers in today’s episode. If you like what you hear, check them out at thethankyounotes.bandcamp.com.