Big line getting attention
Moose snipers make it happen
ADAM WAZNY -- Winnipeg Sun
|Peter Sarno (above) and Jason King have been lighting the AHL on fire. Alexandre Burrows adds extra hustle to the line. (Winnipeg Sun/Jason Halstead)
They have received a lot of attention lately.
Not surprising really, considering how well centre Peter Sarno and winger Jason King have played together this American Hockey League season.
Since the start of training camp the two have shown an instant rapport on the ice, with Sarno starring in the role as playmaker and King drawing rave reviews as the sniper in the current installment of the Manitoba Moose.
Heading into last night's action, Sarno sat third in league scoring with five goals and 19 assists for 24 points. King was right behind him with 15 goals and 22 points, and is coming off a two-goal performance in a 5-3 loss to the St. John's Maple Leafs on Friday.
With their strong offensive output through the first 18 games of the season, other teams have kept a close eye on the dynamic duo. Most nights, the two will find themselves matched up against the opposition's checking line or the best defensive pairing in an attempt to monitor what they are doing.
At least that's what Sarno has noticed.
"It's been a little tighter the last couple games," the AHL assist leader said following the two-game set with the Maple Leafs. "When you have a guy like Kinger on the line, he's going to draw a lot of attention."
Some of that attention includes some physical play, something the 5-foot-11, 185-pound Sarno has been used to in his four previous seasons in the AHL.
"(Teams) are bringing a little hack and whack, but that's part of the game," he said. "When you're scoring you have to expect it. The good players find ways to work around that and still produce."
The third member of the line didn't even start the season in Winnipeg.
Alexandre Burrows joined the Moose Oct. 29 from the Columbia Inferno of the East Coast Hockey League as an injury replacement for Wade Brookbank.
The winger has impressed head coach Randy Carlyle with his hustle and ability to make things happen in the offensive zone, which is why Burrows is skating alongside two of the league's top point-getters right now.
"When you play with great players, that can only make you better," Burrows offered earlier in the week.
Depending on how you look at it, the 23-year-old had the biggest impact of the Manitoba forwards against St. John's in the first two games at MTS Centre.
He only had a goal and an assist total, but the way he went to the net and the havoc he created in the Leafs crease might be impossible to measure. Goalie interference, missed empty nets, responsible for disallowed goals -- he was right in the middle of it all last week.
Burrows knows he'll have to cash in more of his chances if he hopes to continue skating with Sarno and King.
"This is where I want to be," he said. "I'm a better player playing with these guys."
DUMP AND CHASE: With Joe DiPenta out for at least a week, defenceman Kent Huskins managed to get back in the lineup Friday night. "The wind felt pretty good, but it took a little bit of time to get back the mobility and the reflexes. There's only so much you can do in practice," Huskins said afterwards. The rearguard was a healthy scratch for the past nine games ... After a couple days off, the Moose will resume skating today ... The 9th annual Tip-A-Moose dinner is on Wednesday at MTS Centre. Moose players will be on hand as servers.