When I walked into the First Niagara Center Tuesday night for a Bandits practice at 6:30 p.m., I saw Anthony Cosmo going in the other direction. Odd, I thought, since practice started at 7.
Not so odd. He was off to the Toronto area to see the birth of Spencer Anthony Cosmo, who arrived at 10:47 p.m. Spencer was 8 pounds, 11 ounces. Sounds like a defender to me. Everyone said to be doing fine, according to Twitter.
While that was the good news from practice, there was some bad news. Mike Thompson is still hurting from his collision in the crease against Edmonton, and may not be ready to play for the rest of the regular season. Darryl Gibson also is questionable because of an injury suffered in that game. Steve Priolo is said to have mono and probably is done for the season. And Brandon Francis may be looking at game misconducts and automatic suspensions from last week; we'll know about that on Thursday.
Tracey Kelusky at least practiced on Tuesday, while Billy Dee Smith sat out the workout but should be OK for the weekend.
Are you getting the idea that the Bandits have some manpower issues? Good.
The obvious issue is in goal. Coach Darris Kilgour said that if Thompson can't be a backup goalie, he'd like to bring up Angus Goodleaf from the practice squad to serve that role. But ... he might have to release someone on the active roster to make room for him. I'm frankly not sure if a Francis suspension would be a temporary, if odd, solution to that problem. But it sure sounds like the Bandits' defense will be short-handed in Saturday's game in Rochester. And if that's the case, well, Cosmo had better squeeze in some sleep when he can between now and then.
--- Budd Bailey