ROCHESTER -- Here's what's still in my notebook and my mind after the Amerks' dismal 5-1 loss to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton in Thursday's home opener.
---The Amerks need offense. And I'm not talking Matt Ellis. Their center play has been poor so far. Michael Ryan has to lead the offense and he's been invisible so far. Zack Kassian and Marcus Foligno have been ordinary at best. The lack of offense was a fear.
---Had a good chat with T.J. Brennan, who was brutal in this one but said he's moved on already. He took responsiblity and said he knows as a third-year AHL player that guys look to him for leadership.
"We have 10 guys born after 1990 so it's not exactly time to hit the panic button," Brennan told me. "Guys are learning how good this league is. It's not a joke. You have to play every night. We'll learn quick."
---There was definite disappointment in not putting on a better show for the crowd of 9,217.
"We wanted to come out firing and it didn't work out that way," Brennan said. "I hope it's not one game and they come and give up. You have to have a short-term memory here."
---Joe Finley and Nick Crawford on defense tonight with Dennis Persson and Drew Schiestel both out with injuries. The Amerks are denying a Hamilton Spectator report that Schiestel is out 4-6 weeks with a sprained knee ligament suffered in Saturday's opener at Hamilton, Schiestel's hometown. Hmmm.
--Loved the way the Amerks handled the alumni reunion, both on the red carpet in the atrium and on the ice. And great moment to see the announcement of Joe Crozier's impending induction to the AHL Hall of Fame.
---If you're a Sabres fan, you should come to a game here. The seating bowl was redone a few years ago and sightlines are great. Pegula & Co. forked over 200K for a new video board. There's no shots on goal counter anywhere I saw. Needs to be fixed.
---Got a few tweets about disastrous lines at concession stands too. The concourses are old and tight and that's a problem. But folks behind the counter have to work too. I went at 6:15 -- 45 minutes before faceoff -- to check it out and they were already out of pizza and trying to make more? Gotta be more prepared than that.
---A veteran baseball writer gets really messed up covering Scranton/Wilkes-Barre for 14 years and now being told he's covering Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.