ALLEN, TX – The Allen Americans will be spending their second day in south Florida today waiting to play the Florida Everblades on Friday night. It is a rare occurrence to have a two-day wait when on the road. If you have to be away from home and sit around for two days the Fort Myers area isn’t too bad. It is 28 degrees in Allen as I write this while it is 70 in Fort Myers with a high today of 85. Other than a short practice the team will have a lot of downtime today.
– Zach Hall is with the team and expected back in the lineup at some point this weekend. Alex Schoenborn, who was injured in the Colorado game on Friday, is not with the team. Alex may be ready to return to the lineup when the Americans play at home next weekend.
– While Allen was relaxing in the Ft. Myers area last night the Everblades were in Orlando playing the Solar Bears. Florida scored three unanswered goals in the third period to win the game 3-1. Florida has outscored their opponents 59-37 in the third period. Allen has been outscored in the third period 56-55.
– The win last night was the 32nd of the season for the Everblades who are on pace to end the season with 108 points. That would be the second most points in the last 10 years exceeded only by the 109 points the Missouri/Kansas City Mavericks had in 2015-16.
– There will be a complete game preview tomorrow but one stat worth noting is how Florida plays with the lead. The Everblades are undefeated at home with a lead. They are 8-0 when leading after the first period and 9-0 when leading after the second period.
– The Americans were idle but got some help as Tulsa, Wichita and Colorado all lost last night. Tulsa got beat by Kalamazoo 9-6 in a game where the Oilers were trailing 9-2 after the second period. Fort Wayne beat Wichita 9-3 in a game the Thunder were leading 2-1 after the first period. The Komets scored eight straight goals to blow out the Thunder. Idaho beat Colorado 4-2. Here are the current Mountain Division standings with games played in parentheses.
66 points – Colorado (46 games)
58 points – Idaho (47 games)
54 points – Allen (48 games)
53 points – Wichita (45 games)
49 points – Tulsa (50 games)
44 points – Utah (48 games)
34 points – Rapid City (46 games)
– The Mountain Division has been mediocre over the last 10 games. Rapid City, Tulsa and Utah have five wins, Wichita, Allen and Colorado have four wins and Utah has three wins. Allen is the only team with a point streak of more than one game (4-0-0-1) while Colorado has lost four straight.
– For those waiting for the Marvel themed specialty jerseys that the Americans wore January 15 to go up for auction that has finally happened. There are 25 jerseys available with most having a minimum bid of $200 but some are only $150. The auction lasts until Tuesday, February 27. As of this morning only one jersey had the minimum bid and that was Gary Steffes. The jerseys are autographed. Here is the link if you want to make a bid or just track how the auction is going. https://www.meigrayauctions.com/
– San Jose Barracuda captain, John McCarthy, just left the team and is in South Korea to play for the U.S. Olympic hockey team. Barracuda broadcaster Nick Nollenberger shares his thoughts on the impact of the captain’s absence. https://www.sjbarracuda.com/news/detail/broadcast-blog-5
– If you are interested in Olympic hockey in PyeongChang here are all of the details from teams to rules to schedules to players to watch for both the men and women. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/sports/wp/2018/02/08/how-to-watch-hockey-at-the-2018-winter-olympics-in-pyeongchang/?utm_term=.3781557ec83b
DID YOU KNOW: Allen leads the ECHL with 1045 penalty minutes and is on pace to finish the season with 1568. Quad City has the fewest penalty minutes with 432 and is on pace to finish the season with 707. The difference (1568 minus 707) is 861 minutes which would be the largest gap between the top and bottom team in penalty minute since Allen joined the ECHL.