If you divide the Allen schedule into segments the next ten games will be critical. Nine of the games will be on the road and will determine if the Americans finish in the top two in the Western Conference. The top two teams will have home ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs.
– The top three teams (Wichita – .672, Fort Wayne – .667, Allen – .653) have separated themselves from the bottom four teams in the conference and will fight it out for the top three seeds in the playoffs. Allen plays Wichita one more time (June 2 at home) and doesn’t play Fort Wayne at all so the Americans will need some help if they are going to move up in the standings. Fort Wayne and Wichita play three times in Fort Wayne (May 21,22,23).
– Allen has won seven of its last eight games but only one of the wins was on the road. The challenge for the Americans is whether they can improve on their .556 road points percentage in this upcoming nine of 10 games on the road.
– While the top three teams in the conference are battling for playoff positions, the bottom four teams are battling for the fourth and final playoff spot. Even last place Kansas City, Allen’s opponent in its next three games, has a shot at the playoffs and will be playing desperate. The Americans and Mavericks play tonight and Saturday in Kansas City and in Allen Monday night.
– Allen was flying to Kansas City this morning for a game with the Mavericks tonight (7:05 pm CDT). Kansas City played in Wichita last night and lost 5-2 so they had a long night traveling back home (200 miles) after the game. The Thunder had a 4-0 lead before the Mavericks got on the scoreboard.
– The game tonight will be ninth of the season between Allen and Kansas City with the Americans winning six of the first eight. The last series between these teams was four games in Allen in April. The Americans swept all four games.
– The Americans are coming off a four game series with Tulsa where they won three of four games. In the last 10 games Allen has a record of 8-2-0-0. Kansas City has a record of 2-6-2-0 in its last 10 games. The Mavericks have lost three straight and five of the last six games.
– In the eight head to head games Allen leads in goals 25-20 and has a slight edge in shots 264-261. The totals are deceiving since in one game Allen held the Mavericks to 16 shots in a 3-0 win and the very next night gave up 42 shots in a 4-2 loss.
– Kansas City has played much better on the road than at home this season with a record of 8-13-6-0 at at home and 15-13-2-2 on the road. Allen on the other hand has played much better at home with a home record of 22-7-2-1 compared to a road record of 15-12-0-0.
– In the eight head to head games Allen was 7-34 (20.6%) on the power play and Kansas City was 6-28 (21.4%). If you look at season averages, Allen’s power play percentage on the road is ranked #1 at 25.3% and the road penalty kill is ranked #10 at 80.4%. Kansas City’s home power play percentage is ranked #7 at 18.3% and the penalty kill is ranked #9 at 81.8%.
– I am sure it doesn’t come as a surprise that the two games Allen lost to Kansas City this season the Mavericks scored first. Allen’s points percentage when it scores first is .764 and Kansas City’s is .712. That first goal as usual will be critical.
– If any of the three games against Kansas City go extra time the advantage is with Allen who has the best record in the ECHL in these games. The Americans have gone extra time in 12 of 59 games (20%) and has a record of 5-2 in overtime and 4-1 in shootouts. That equates to a points percentage of .750. Kansas City has gone extra time in 16 of 59 games (27%) and has a record of 5-8 in overtimes and 1-2 in shootouts. That equates to a points percentage of .375.
“We will take 20 players on the trip to Kansas City which is every healthy player on the roster. Josh Lammon and Zane Franklin are not available this week.”
“With Lammon and Franklin out and the fact we don’t have last change on the road I will have to change up the lines to get better matchups.”
“We had a good practice yesterday working on some of the areas we need to improve. The plan with two days between games in Kansas City is to take Thursday off and practice on Friday.”
“Our goal is to get everyone used to playing with each other and have everyone in sync. We have so many young players that were leaders on their teams and have shown the ability to score as amateurs. With more games played I expect to get our guys playing at their max ability.”
“Justin Kapelmaster will get the start in goal tonight and Jake Paterson will start on Saturday.”
– Here is the current roster excluding players out for the season. All of the players that are not injured are on the trip to Kansas City.
#31 – Frank Marotte (injured)
#34 – Jake Paterson
#39 – Justin Kapelmaster
#5 – Phil Beaulieu (injured)
#7 – Sam Ruopp
#14 – Les Lancaster
#16 – Darian Skeoch
#18 – Kris Myllari
#20 – Ben Carroll
#21 – Dominic Cormier
#43 – Matt Register
#8 – Steve Owre
#9 – Brett Neumann
#11 – Collin Shirley
#15 – Corey Mackin
#17 – Colby McAuley (injured)
#19 – Chad Butcher
#25 – Kelly Bent
#26 – Spencer Asuchak
#27 – Sam Laberge
#29 – Josh Maser
#40 – Josh Lammon (injured)
#44 – Zane Franklin (injured)
#71 – Dyson Stevenson
#77 – Scott Conway
– The ECHL released the 2021-22 schedule yesterday which is very early by historical standards. With Brampton not returning (announced earlier) and the addition of franchises in Trois-Rivieres, Quebec and Coralville, Iowa the ECHL will be comprised of 27 teams in 20 states and two Canadian provinces. The ECHL will return to four divisions for the 2021-22 season. The Mountain Division returns with the same seven teams as in the past before Covid. Fort Wayne, who was in the same conference as Allen this season, will be in the Central Division as will the new franchise in Iowa.
– If you haven’t had a chance to see the Allen schedule for 2021-22 here is the press release from the Americans which includes the schedule in calendar format: https://allenamericans.com/news/general/americans-announce-full-72-game-schedule-for-13th-season-of-pro-hockey-in-allen/
DID YOU KNOW: Two ECHL teams have 20+ home wins, no other team has more than 17 home wins. Just one team has 20 road wins, no other team has more than 15 road wins. Here are the records for teams with most home and road wins: