ALLEN, Texas – If I told you the Allen Americans went on the road and allowed the top team in the division 24 shots (16 fewer than they normally allow) and killed all seven power-play opportunities against the best power play unit in the ECHL, you would probably think they won the game, or at least it was close. Not the case last night, as the Utah Grizzlies shutout Allen 4-0 before a crowd of 3101 at the Maverik Center.
Here are a few reasons why Allen allowed the fewest shots to an opponent all season and went 0-7 on the penalty kill but still got devoured by the Grizzlies.
– Allen gave up 24 shots, the fewest all season, but they took only 18 shots, the fewest all season
– Allen had only three shots in the first period
– Allen had only four shots in the second period
– Allen was 0-4 on the power play
– Utah scored on their second, third and fourth shots of the game
– Allen had no answer for Utah’s top line of Matt Berry (3G, 1A), Caleb Herbert (1G, 2A) & Cole Ully (0G, 2A)
– Statistically, the game was close with the exception of the score. The problem was the Americans gave up three goals on Utah’s first four shots and the game was over midway through the first period.
– The only comment I got from Steve Martinson was Allen had more shots on goal than were credited but the Americans also missed the net on several scoring chances.
– Allen will have the day off today to celebrate Thanksgiving and then try to get back on the winning track on Friday and Saturday. The Americans have spent all 10 years of their existence on the road for Thanksgiving. Mark and Elizabeth Fisher are providing Thanksgiving dinner for the team as they have in the past. I heard the dinner will be at Cracker Barrel.
Continued Roster Tumult
– With one win since October 27, the Americans continue to fight on despite adversity. Zach Pochiro was back in the lineup last night but Braylon Shmyr missed the game with an injury. Pavel Jenys did not play because his NHL contract was traded by the Minnesota Wild to the Los Angeles Kings for defenseman Stepan Falkovsky. The trade will not benefit Allen, at least in the short term, as Falkovsky will report to the Iowa Wild (AHL).
– Martinson mentioned in his pregame interview he hopes Dante Salituro will return after this weekend and Kevin Sundher is a couple of weeks away from returning. However, there are also a couple of players that have been playing with injuries that are not getting better so they may have to take the time to get the injuries fixed. It seems like it has been one step forward and two steps back all season for the Americans.
– Garrett Clarke posted this on his Twitter account this morning:
Beyond excited to be back in red. Lets turn this ship around and bring back the kelly cup back to Allen!
— Garrett Clarke (@GarrettClarke79) November 22, 2018
We’ll have to see how this impacts the roster moving forward.
– Allen is now ranked #24 in goals scored per game (2.59) and #25 in goals allowed (3.82). The Americans have never had a season when they have scored fewer goals on average than they have allowed. See the details below (DID YOU KNOW).
– With each loss, the hole gets deeper for the Americans. History would say it is a hole they will not be able to climb out of. Here are the current Mountain Division point standings with games played in parentheses:
23 points – Utah (15 games)
22 points – Tulsa (15 games)
21 points – Kansas City (13 games)
19 points – Idaho (18 games)
17 points – Rapid City (17 games)
15 points – Wichita (14 games)
10 points – Allen (17 games)
– Tomorrow, I will take my annual look at the playoffs at Thanksgiving with the title, “IT’S THANKSGIVING – ARE THE PLAYOFF TEAMS ALREADY DECIDED?”
Did You Know?
Allen has a combination of the lowest goals scored average and highest goals allowed average since joining the ECHL and it isn’t even close. Here are the stats showing average goals for per game and average goals allowed per game with the goal differential in parentheses:
2018-19: 2.59 – 3.82 (-1.23)
2017-18: 3.26 – 3.22 (+0.04)
2016-17: 4.08 – 2.82 (+1.26)
2015-16: 3.08 – 2.83 (+0.25)
2014-15: 4.06 – 2.82 (+1.24)
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!