It is get away day for the Allen Americans as they departed at 10:00 am on the 475 mile journey to Kansas City to take on the Mavericks tomorrow (Friday) night. Right after the game they will bus back to Allen to play Tulsa on Saturday night. By the way, Tulsa does not play on Friday and has not played since they lost 1-0 to Allen on Tuesday.
– The Americans will once again be playing shorthanded. Corey Durocher and Stepan Falkovsky were injured in the Tulsa game on Tuesday and join Olivier Archambault on the side lines. They will all stay home. The Americans head to Kansas City with just 15 skaters (9 forwards, 6 defensemen).
– The Americans will add one new player for the game in Kansas City and that is defenseman Ben Carroll who will be playing in his first professional game. Coach Martinson said Ben looked good in practice yesterday and reminded him of a bigger Jordan Rowley who signed with Allen in 2016 after finishing his collegiate career (Carroll and Rowley are both University of Alberta grads). Rowley was the only Allen defenseman that played in all 24 Kelly Cup playoffs games in 2016 as the Americans won their fourth straight championship. Martinson also said, “Carroll is the typical college graduate who is a mature, strong, experienced player and is in top shape having just finished his college playoffs.” Even though Carroll is a rookie he is 24 years old with 178 games played in the WHL and another 96 in college. He has won a Memorial Cup and USports University Cup Championship which are both difficult to win.
– The ECHL trade deadline is today at 2:00 pm CST. I counted nine ECHL trades so far this week, some for future considerations, some for cash and some trading players. Don’t look for much activity by Allen today. Because of the injuries and players loaned to the AHL the only trade I could see Martinson making is to acquire a player for future considerations.
– The Americans announced yesterday a change to the three game series they play in Utah next week. Instead of playing Wednesday, Friday and Saturday they will play Friday, Saturday and Sunday. This change was requested by Utah and does create another three games in three days but will make for a shorter road trip. The team will fly on this trip and were able to make the adjustment.
– The big three game series between the two hottest teams in the ECHL got underway last night as Idaho hosted South Carolina. It was a defensive battle as you would expect from the #1 and #2 ranked ECHL teams in goals allowed. South Carolina gives up an average of 2.31 goals per game followed by Idaho at 2.53. Idaho took the first game of the series 1-0, scoring the only goal of the game on the power play with six seconds remaining in the second period. Game two of this series will be Friday night.
– Kansas City had two players assigned yesterday by their AHL affiliate, the Stockton Heat. One of the players sent back was defenseman Zach Osburn who has been in Stockton since February 9. I am sure it is just a coincidence Stockton sent their affiliated defenseman (Osburn) back to Kansas City just before they play Allen while keeping their non affiliated defenseman (Les Lancaster) who is from Allen. With Kansas City out of the playoff picture the more likely reason Stockton is keeping Lancaster over their affiliated players is because they see him as a better defenseman.
– Here are the current Mountain Division standings by winning percentage with Allen’s record against each team in parenthesis:
.717 – Allen
.653 – Idaho (5-1-2-1)
.633 – Utah (3-2-0-1)
.534 – Rapid City (6-2-0-0)
.516 – Tulsa (7-2-0-0)
.448 – Kansas City (3-3-0-0)
.441 – Wichita (8-1-3-0)
DID YOU KNOW: I posted this on my ECHL Stats page this morning. What surprised me the most was the variance in the number of games played outside the division. Also not sure what conclusions you can draw from each division’s record against the other divisions. Here is the post:
The number of games each ECHL division has played outside their division varies from 66 to 98. Here are the interdivisional games played and record for each division:
North Division – 68 games
South Division – 77 games
Central Division- 98 games
Mountain Division – 66 games
Here is Allen’s record in the 10 games they played outside the Mountain Division this season:
North Division 3-1-0-0
South Division 2-0-0-0
Central Division 2-1-1-0