This was suppose to be the year. The year that the Moncton Wildcats would claim junior hockey supremacy.
From the build up and anticipation, to the construction of a championship caliber team, to the incredibly disappointing ending.
Here’s a look back at the 2019-2020 season.
Chapter 1 The Anticipation
Jacob Hudson is clearly the heart and soul of the Moncton Wildcats. I caught up with Huddy in the Summer to check on his offseason work out regime and how excited he was to kick off the 2019-2020 season.
Chapter 2 NHL Draft Experience
Jakob Pelletier and Jordan Spence had a very memorable offseason experiencing their first taste of their future. The NHL!
Chapter 3 Uncertainty
The Cats made a big splash at the QMJHL Draft trading for Olivier Rodrigue, but what happened next added drastic uncertainty to the organizations plans on building a championship contender.
Chapter 4 A New Beginning and A Future Star
Chapter 5 The Last Ride
Mika Cyr was coming off a career year and very excited to be a critical piece of the Wildcats championship run.
Chapter 6 Difficult Decisions
The Cats brass were faced with very difficult decisions and tons of uncertainty coming out of camp.
Chapter 7 Wildcats Depth A Massive Factor in Building a Championship Team
Jake Stewart was coming off a stellar season and gearing up for a strong start. Stewart’s character, pride and leadership should never be overlooked.
Chapter 8 Francis Langlois’ Journey to the Q
Langlois was the surprise of the 2018-19 Wildcats Camp and was looking to have another massive impression this season.
Chapter 9 Putting All the Pieces Together
The Wildcats brain trust were starting to put together all the pieces, but still had a lot of unanswered questions regarding personnel.
Chapter 10 Tristan DeJong’s Memorable Path to the QMJHL
The Wildcats have a hit two homeruns the last two seasons with free agents, here’s a look back at DeJong’s rise to prominence.
Chapter 11 Heart and Soul: Dylan Seitz’s Journey to the QMJHL and Beyond
As an overage Seitz was looking to have an impact with 2019-2020 Cats, but a nagging injury and the unpredictable return of his best friend would unfortunately end his journey in the Q.
Chapter 12 Big Trouble?
Jonathan Aspirot and Jeremy McKenna were suppose to be part of the plan that was looking more and more likely not to happen?
Chapter 13 The Return of the QMJHL and Predictions
The season opener was upon us, but the Cats still didn’t have their roster finalized?
Chapter 14 Smoke and Mirrors
The Wildcats home opener was a very entertaining, but it left us with even more questions?
Chapter 15 What did you Expect?
It is was what it was, the Cats were searching for a lot of answers and they were about to get a massive surprise
Chapter 16 The Return Changed Everything
The return of the Summerside Sniper changed the direction of the Moncton Wildcat season
Chapter 17 The Wildcat Wish List
When #12 returned, the Cats plan to go all in quickly took shape!
Chapter 18 A Future NHLer Joins the Mix
Axel Andersson’s arrival solified the Cats D-Corps, but it also made them a bonafide contender.
Chapter 19 Echoes of Past Championship Glory and The Wish List Growing
Chapter 20 Playoff Mentality Critical for Torchetti
John Torchetti had the Cats playing inspired hockey.
Chapter 21 Alexander Khovanov’s Wild Ride
Alexander Khovanov career year was just starting to take shape
Chapter 22 Tough Enough?
The Cats had a plethora of skill, but were they tough enough?
Chapter 23 The Avenir Centre’s Shining Moment
The QMJHL vs Russia Game was a monumental occasion for the City of Moncton and the Avenir Centre
Chapter 24 A Future Wildcat Clawing His Way to the QMJHL
Dominic LeBlanc has a very bright future in the game, there’s no doubt he’s Q ready after having a very impressive Training Camp.
Chapter 25 Goaltending Concerns and Championship Inspirations
Goaltending is so important, and it became apparent the Cats were concerned that experience was critical in building a championship caliber team
Chapter 26 The Cost of Doing Business
The Wildcats were building toward a championship run, but at what cost?
Chapter 27 The Voice
Tim Rozell’s amazing journey in broadcasting was very noteworthy given he had witnessed and experienced a President Cup Champion in the Sea Dogs.
Chapter 28 Cappy’s Return
Adam Capannelli was a critical piece to the Wildcats rebuild he returned to the Avenir Centre with the Armada in November.
Chapter 29 Depth
The Wildcats depth and energy lines were playing inspired hockey which drastically led to the teams success
Chapter 30 The Beginning of the End
The events surrounding John Torchetti’s departure from the 3rd best team in the nation was truly newsworthy.
Chapter 31 Aspirot’s Rumoured Return to the Cats Was Unfounded
Aspirot’s path to the pro ranks is truly inspirational.
Chapter 32 Resiliency was the Key for the Wildcats
Resiliency was critical for the Cats journey during the uncertainty surrounding the John Torchetti’s absence.
Chapter 33 Speculation and Trade Targets
The Halifax Mooseheads and the Moncton Wildcats were unlikely trade partners, but BO Groulx and Jared McIsaac were going to be perfect for the Cats plans
Chapter 34 The End
On December 14 the Wildcats released John Torchetti. The search for a new Head Coach would start right away, with familiarity being a critical piece to the puzzle.
Chapter 35 Sean Stewart’s Value to the Moncton Wildcats
Sean Stewart’s progression as a player was critical to the Cats defensive success.
Chapter 36 The Search Continues
The search for a new Head Coach was the only story in town
Chapter 37 The Search is Over
Daniel Lacroix was the perfect hire for the Moncton Wildcats
Chapter 38 The Man Behind the Scenes Ritchie Thibeau’s Impact on the Moncton Wildcats
Ritchie Thibeau does all his amazing work building the Wildcats championship caliber team behind the scenes.