2019-2020 Moncton Wildcats: The Year That Could Have Been Part 1

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.

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://t.co/Dn28ZqaFCV?amp=1

Chapter 2 NHL Draft Experience

Jakob Pelletier and Jordan Spence had a very memorable offseason experiencing their first taste of their future. The NHL!

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/06/03/a-dream-season/


Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://t.co/PUktSbDYmP?amp=1

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.

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/08/11/major-concerns-confronting-the-moncton-wildcats/

Chapter 4 A New Beginning and A Future Star

Graphic Content Courtesy Moncton Wildcats
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/08/15/day-1-recap-of-the-moncton-wildcats-training-camp-its-early-but-the-cats-came-back/

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.

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/08/16/the-last-ride/

Chapter 6 Difficult Decisions

The Cats brass were faced with very difficult decisions and tons of uncertainty coming out of camp.

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/08/20/wildcats-facing-difficult-decisions/

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.

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/08/28/under-the-radar/

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.

Photo Credit Moncton Wildcats
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/08/30/ready-to-leave-his-mark/

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.

Graphic Content Courtesy Moncton Wildcats
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/09/04/now-what-trying-to-figure-out-the-moncton-wildcats-2019-2020-roster/


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.

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/09/05/chasing-the-dream/

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.

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/09/13/heart-and-soul/

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?

Photo Credit Ottawa Senators
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/09/16/are-the-moncton-wildcats-in-big-trouble/

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?

https://wordpress.com/block-editor/post/firstdownsportspodcast.com/6250

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/09/20/2019-2020-qmjhl-predictions-well-sort-of/

Chapter 14 Smoke and Mirrors

The Wildcats home opener was a very entertaining, but it left us with even more questions?

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/09/28/smoke-and-mirrors-the-2019-2020-moncton-wildcats-home-opener/

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

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/09/28/smoke-and-mirrors-the-2019-2020-moncton-wildcats-home-opener/

Chapter 16 The Return Changed Everything

The return of the Summerside Sniper changed the direction of the Moncton Wildcat season

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/10/05/this-changes-everything-jeremy-mckennas-return-to-the-moncton-wildcats/

Chapter 17 The Wildcat Wish List

When #12 returned, the Cats plan to go all in quickly took shape!

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/10/06/the-wish-list/

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.

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/10/06/the-wish-list/
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/10/11/axel-andersson-stars-in-qmjhl-debut/
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/10/20/a-star-in-the-making/
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/11/03/bs-prospect-axel-andersson-has-a-new-role-with-the-wildcats/
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/12/14/bruins-prospect-embracing-his-time-in-the-qmjhl/

Chapter 19 Echoes of Past Championship Glory and The Wish List Growing

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/10/11/moncton-wildcats-targeting-top-end-forwards-and-defencemen/

Chapter 20 Playoff Mentality Critical for Torchetti

John Torchetti had the Cats playing inspired hockey.

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/10/16/torchetti-stressing-playoff-mentality/

Chapter 21 Alexander Khovanov’s Wild Ride

Alexander Khovanov career year was just starting to take shape

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/10/22/a-wild-journey/

Chapter 22 Tough Enough?

The Cats had a plethora of skill, but were they tough enough?

Photo credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/10/25/are-the-moncton-wildcats-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

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/10/30/monctons-downtown-gem-will-shine-bright/

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.

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/11/03/wildcats-prospect-trusting-the-process-in-order-to-get-next-level/

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

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/11/24/do-the-moncton-wildcats-have-what-it-takes-between-the-pipes/
https://t.co/nkXKMUwvM5?amp=1

Chapter 26 The Cost of Doing Business

The Wildcats were building toward a championship run, but at what cost?

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://t.co/sIT2y2r6y4?amp=1

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.

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/11/26/the-voice/

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.

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/11/29/the-long-road-back-for-20/

Chapter 29 Depth

The Wildcats depth and energy lines were playing inspired hockey which drastically led to the teams success

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/11/30/depth-is-the-difference-for-the-moncton-wildcats/

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.

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/12/01/whos-next/
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/12/02/the-story-i-cant-write/
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/12/03/torchetti-rejoins-wildcats/




Chapter 31 Aspirot’s Rumoured Return to the Cats Was Unfounded

Aspirot’s path to the pro ranks is truly inspirational.

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://t.co/nkXKMUwvM5?amp=1

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.

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/12/06/resilient-wildcats-continue-to-face-challenges/
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/12/08/uncertainty/

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

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/12/12/groulx-and-mcisaac-to-the-wildcats/
https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/12/22/benoit-olivier-groulx-a-perfect-fit-for-the-moncton-wildcats/

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.

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/12/14/wildcats-release-torchetti/
https://t.co/61s8gz5Abb?amp=1

Chapter 35 Sean Stewart’s Value to the Moncton Wildcats

Sean Stewart’s progression as a player was critical to the Cats defensive success.

Photo Credit Daniel St Louis
https://t.co/lgVRxTiq75?amp=1

Chapter 36 The Search Continues

The search for a new Head Coach was the only story in town

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/12/21/the-search-continues/

Chapter 37 The Search is Over

Daniel Lacroix was the perfect hire for the Moncton Wildcats

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/12/23/the-search-is-over/

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.

https://firstdownsportspodcast.com/2019/12/26/the-man-behind-the-scenes/

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