BRIDGEPORT -- Kevin Poulin said early in the season he loved to play a lot. Then he didn't play at all for two weeks until Saturday.
"You don't really have control over it," Poulin said after the Bridgeport Sound Tigers practiced Monday, home for the first time in a week.
"Keep practicing, keep focusing on your own game. That's what I did, kept focused."
Anders Nilsson played six games in a row after Poulin's 4-3 shootout loss to Worcester on Dec. 1. Poulin got the call Saturday at Norfolk for another shootout loss, but one that marked a solid comeback.
The Admirals' forwards sustained pressure in the Bridgeport zone most of the night. Not counting the bonus shot awarded for the shootout win, Norfolk put 52 shots on the Sound Tigers' net. Poulin stopped 50.
"He made a lot of spectacular saves," coach Scott Pellerin said. "First saves, second saves, and he was making the third saves. That's something as a team we have to clear up."
Poulin was the Sound Tigers' workhorse down the stretch last year, playing 12 games in a row after Nilsson sprained an ankle. He got the bulk of the early games this year with Nilsson ill.
This was Poulin's longest gap between games in three years as a pro, except for the two months he spent on injured reserve to end 2010-11.
"We've been working on just a little tune-up," Poulin said.
What was Pellerin looking for in the meantime?
"He's a competitor, and that's what I want, to be competitive. That's what I want from all my guys, to get better every day."
IN THEIR HONOR: The Sound Tigers announced Monday they will wear a sticker on their helmets and a green ribbon on their sweaters the rest of the season to honor the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings.
The team will also paint the school's initials and Friday's date under the ice behind each net.
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