ALLEN, Texas – The Allen Americans have a practice day today as they get ready for three home games (Wednesday, Friday, Saturday) against the best team in the ECHL, the Cincinnati Cyclones. I will have a complete series preview tomorrow, but here is one stat about Allen and Cincinnati that more than any other explains why one is the best in the league and one is the worst – goals allowed.

Cincinnati is ranked #1 in goals allowed. The Cyclones have allowed 57 goals this season, an average of 2.19 per game. Allen is ranked #27 in goals allowed. The Americans have allowed 120 goals this season, an average of 4.00 goals per game.

– Allen will get some reinforcements in the lineup ahead of the series with Cincinnati. Coach Martinson has already mentioned Kevin Sundher should return to the lineup. Sundher has played just two games all season and hasn’t played since October 20. David Makowski will be back in the lineup after completing his three game suspension but Mike Gunn was suspended for two games yesterday (illegal check to the head). Newly acquired forward Riley Bourbonnais will see his first action for the Americans on Wednesday.

– I will get an update after practice today on the status of Josh Atkinson and Thomas Frazee who both underwent surgery to repair injuries and should be getting close to returning to the ice. Goaltender C.J. Motte, who has been in Iowa because of an injury to one of its goalies, is slated to return to the Americans lineup this week after being reassigned Tuesday morning.

INDIVIDUAL STAT LEADERS AND TEAM STATS

– I haven’t done this for a while, so thought it might be informational to take a look at Allen’s stats leaders after 30 games. Below are the team leaders in various statistical categories with the league rank in parentheses:

Points:
23 – Zach Pochiro (34th)
21 – Spencer Asuchak (49th)
21 – Alex Breton (49th)

Goals:
14 – Zach Pochiro (5th)
9 – Spencer Asuchak (50th)
7 – Braylon Shmyr (87th)
7 – Adam Miller (87th)

Assists:
16 – Alex Breton (20th)
12 – Spencer Asuchak (65th)
12 – Braylon Shmyr (65th)

Plus/Minus: (No players are plus)
Minus-1 – Josh Thrower (456th)
Minus-1 – Adam Miller (456th)

Penalty Minutes:
82 – David Makowski (5th)
69 – Dalton Thrower (13th)
61 – Zach Pochiro (20th)

Fighting Majors:
3 – Josh Thrower (21st)
3 – Zach Pochiro (21st)
2 – Jake Doty

Shots On Goal:
86 – Dante Salituro (21st)
78 – Zach Pochiro (31st)
75 – David Makowski (38th)

Points by Defensemen
21 – Alex Breton (2nd)
12 – David Makowski (35th)
11 – Joel Chouinard (41st)

Goals by Defensemen
5 – Alex Breton (8th)
4 – David Makowski (18th)
3- Joel Chouinard (29th)

Assists by Defensemen
16 – Alex Breton (4th)
8 – Joel Chouinard (38th)
8 – David Makowski (38th)

Save Percentage
.912 – C.J. Motte (16th)
.888 – Jeremy Brodeur (40th)
.887 – Kyle Hayton (41st)

–  Here is how the Americans rank in the ECHL in some critical statistical categories:

Goal differential – 27th (-46)
Shot differential – 26th (-155)
PIMS per game – 2nd (21.33)
Minor penalties – 1st (180)
Power play % – 19th (15.3%)
Penalty kill % – 23rd (80.7%)
Avg. goals scored – 25th (2.47)
Avg. goals allowed – 27th (4.00)
Avg. shots for per game – 17th (31.37)
Avg. shots against per game – 26th (36.53)
Shooting percentage – 25th (7.7%)
Team save percentage – 25th (.892)

The team stats tell the story. When you are at or near the bottom of the list in every statistical category (except penalties), there is little wonder why Allen is both #27 in points (14) and #27 is winning percentage (.233).

FORMER PLAYER UPDATE

I get asked frequently about players from the past which are playing in Europe. Here is an update on some of the them with a photo in their current jersey.

Chad Costello – Chad is playing for the Krefeld Pinguine in the top league in Germany (DEL). Chad leads his team in scoring with 26 points (11G, 15A) in 28 games. He is eighth in the DEL in scoring. Krefeld is in 10th place in the 14 team league.

Chad Costello

Colton Yellow Horn – Colton played on the very first Allen Americans team in 2009-10. He has played professional hockey all over the world, from Japan to Hungary to the Czech Republic. This season, he is playing for a team in Austria, Graz 99ers. Colton leads his team in points with 34 (14G, 20A) in 28 games. He is tied for third in the league (EBEL) in scoring. The Graz 99ers are currently in fourth place in the 12-team EBEL.

Colton Yellow Horn

Kale Kerbashian – Kale is in the midst of his first year playing in Europe. He plays for HK Nitra in the Slovakian League. He has played in only 18 games and has 20 points (7G, 13A). He leads his team in points per game (1.11). HK Nitra is in fifth place in the 13-team league.

Kale Kerbashian

Judd Blackwater – Judd is a teammate of Kerbashian at HK Nitra. He is second on the team in scoring with 33 points (18G, 15A) in 33 games.

Judd Blackwater

Alex Guptill – Alex is playing in England for the Nottingham Panthers. He has the most points of any former Allen player overseas with 39 points (23G, 12A) in 33 games. He leads his team in scoring and is eighth in the league (EIHL). Nottingham is in second place in the 11-team league.

Alex Guptill

Rick Pinkston – After spending the first three years of his pro career in the ECHL and AHL, Rick headed to Europe this season. He plays in Scotland for the Fife Flyers of the EIHL. Pinkston has 17 points (2G, 15A) in 27 games. He is second in scoring among defensemen and his plus/minus of +11 is second on the team. Fife is in fourth place in the 11-team EIHL.

Rick Pinkston

Alex Lavoie – After a couple of years playing in Scandinavia (Sweden & Finland) Alex is playing in Austria for HC Innsbruck in the EBEL. Alex has 18 points (5G, 13A) in 26 games, which is seventh on his team in scoring. HC Innsbruck is in ninth place in the 12 team EBEL.

Alex Lavoie

Jonathan Lessard – Jonathan is playing for Bordeaux of the French League. He has 16 points (8G, 8A) to go along with 77 penalty minutes in 23 games. He is fourth on the team in scoring and first in penalty minutes. Bordeaux is in fourth place in the 12 team Ligue Magnus.

Jonathan Lessard

Tanner Eberle – Tanner is also spending his first season in Europe playing for the Sheffield Steelers (England) in the EIHL.  He has 13 points (5G, 8A) in 27 games which is seventh on the team in scoring. Tanner has 50 penalty minutes which leads the team. Sheffield is in sixth place in the 11 team EIHL.

Tanner Eberle

Jack Combs – Jack is playing for EHC Kloten in the second tier Swiss League. He signed late and has played in only seven games but already has nine points (4G, 5A). EHC Kloten is in sixth place in the 11 team league.

Jack Combs

Josh Brittain – Josh is playing for Deggendorfer SC in the DEL2 which is the second tier league in Germany. He has 13 points (6G, 7A) in 27 games which is seventh on the team in scoring. Josh has 32 penalty minutes which is third on the team. Deggendorfer SC is in last place in the 14 team DEL2.

Josh Brittain

Greger Hanson – Greger is a teammate of  Costello on the Krefeld Pinguine in the top German league (DEL). It has been a tough season for Greger, who has spent most of the season on the third or fourth line. He has five points (3G, 2A) in 26 games and is 15th on the team in scoring. Krefeld is in 10th place in the 14 team league.

Greger Hanson

DID YOU KNOW: Last season Allen had two impact players, Olivier Archambault and Vincent Arseneau, who were called up to AHL teams and earned themselves AHL contracts. Archambault was averaging 1.63 points per game when he left the Americans. Arseneau was as tough to play against as any player in the ECHL, to go along with 32 points (18G, 14A) in 38 games when he left. This season has been a difficult one for both Archambault and Arseneau as they are in the lineup now but have missed many games because of injury, and in Arseneau’s case, a few games as a healthy scratch. It is hard to believe, but they have only played in nine games (Arseneau) and six games (Archambault) all season. In the 15 games (combined) they have no goals and just two assists. Hopefully the rest of the season goes better for Olivier, Vinny and the Allen Americans.