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Trio of Cyclones Headed South for AHL Camp

September 30, 2012 | View Comments

Trio of Cyclones Headed South for AHL Camp

by Chuck Saffell - Reporter


CINCINNATI, Ohio – With training camp barely underway, three Cyclones players are already on the move. Forward Jared Gomes and defensemen Andrew Hotham and David MacDonald boarded a plane on Saturday headed for San Antonio to participate in training camp with the Rampage, the Florida Panthers’ AHL affiliate.

All three knew prior to reporting to camp in Cincinnati that there was a possibility they would be packing their gear and heading to Texas. Cyclones head coach Jarrod Skalde had informed Hotham and MacDonald in August. Gomes found out about two weeks ago.

While all three are excited about the opportunity to showcase their skills on the next level they know that with the NHL lockout and the trickle-down effect that comes with it they could be back in Cincinnati again soon.

“Those are the things you can’t worry about. The lockout is what it is. Those are things you can’t control. The things you can control are coming to camp and working hard and trying to do your best to make the team and you know, continue through with the year,” said Hotham about the unusual situation of this season.

For Gomes the situation is especially odd as a first year player. His only time on the ice as a professional has been for individual testing on Friday and a short session with Hotham and MacDonald early Saturday morning.

Just shortly before heading to the airport Gomes stated, “It’s definitely different because it is almost like you are in two training camps instead of one. I am going to have to shift my focus to San Antonio after being here in Cincinnati and hopefully things go well.”

MacDonald is entering his first full season as a pro after seeing action 14 games for the Cyclones at the end of the 2011-12 season. He shared his thoughts on what it was like when he opened the e-mail containing his invitation to camp with the Rampage.

“It was pretty cool. I am an older guy so it was good to get that invitation so I can go down and experience that. I don’t have any expectations of what it’s going to be like, but I am going to try and just go down and play my game and hopefully contribute a bit.”

San Antonio’s training camp begins today under the direction of former Cyclones head coach Chuck Weber. Cyclones camp continues on the ice at U.S. Bank Arena the remainder of this week leading up to the first exhibition game against the Wheeling Nailers Friday night at 7:30pm. Tickets are available for that game for just $5. Contact a Cyclones Ticket Representative today at 513.421.PUCK (7825) to reserve your seats.