HOCKEY DAY IN ALLENTOWN: “A Bridgeport To The Playoffs” 3/26/2017

“Maybe someday
Saved by zero
I’ll be more together”

-The Fixx

Photo: Cheryl Pursell

Looking Back

I certainly didn’t enjoy the 4-0 loss last night.  It’d be nice to get a PPG once in a while, especially when the other team feels like it can commit penalties with impunity.

But it was what it was:  a lost hockey game.  I didn’t take much more out of it and despite my best efforts to change my jersey rotation and re-acquire some mojo–it was for naught.

Enter Bridgeport, now four points below the playoff dividing line, and struggling to keep up having lost their hot-shot goalie.  I see this game as more important for the weekend; let’s see how we respond.

Team Report

Perhaps if there was a day to lose it was yesterday, with Hershey falling in St Johns and Bridgeport faltering in Hartford.  Providence won and of course WBS.

TEAM GP W L OTL SOL PTS PCT
1 WBS 66 45 18 3 0 93 0.705
2 LV 66 42 20 4 0 88 0.667
3 PRO 66 38 19 5 4 85 0.644
4 HER 67 37 19 8 3 85 0.634
5 BRI 66 39 24 2 1 81 0.614
6 SPR 66 27 28 9 2 65 0.492
7 HFD 66 22 38 4 2 50 0.379

If the playoffs started today…..–stop it.  They don’t.  Keep playing hockey.

Magic number drops to 14 with Bridgeport’s loss last night.  It can be 10 with a regulation win over the Sound Kitties this afternoon.  You know, I’d love to get to 50 wins.  We’d have to go 8-2 to get there so it probably won’t happen–but it’s not impossible.

 

Photo: Cheryl Pursell

Player Report

  • D Robert Hagg returned last night and shook off the rust.  He may rest today with the quick turn around, but it’s good to have him back.
  • F Chris Conner remained out yesterday with an unknown ailment.  No report on when or if we should expect him back.
  • F Greg Carey left yesterday’s game after a collision with a teammate.  His status is unknown.

Reading Report

The Royals got back in the win column yesterday with a little help from Steve Swavely.  Their magic number is down to four.

GAME DAY!

A slightly weakened Sound Tigers team arrives at 7th and Hamilton without G Jaroslav Halak and RW Josh Ho-Sang.  Penn State product Eamon McAdam was in net for the loss last night.  With the quick turn around we very well may see G Stephon Williams up from ECHL Missouri today.

Puck Drop:  5:05PM

Doors:  4:00PM

Tickets:  Seats remain for this game, including discounted seats in 201.

Parking:  They may have changed it, but at last glance they don’t check meters on Sunday, so there’s a possible parking loophole for you today.

Promotion:  Silver Phantoms game, so be kind to Seniors in attendance this afternoon.  Also, post-game “Guns and Hoses” game, stay after if you like.  Hopefully they’ll use the club seats for that and not 104/105, that way it’s closer to food and drink in Chickie’s as the rest of the arena will likely be closed.

Media Kit:  bridgeport 326

Officials:  

Broadcast:  In addition to the usual suspects, today’s game also available on the NHL Network where available, I think.

PreGame:  Pregame shows are available on TV2 at 4:30PM and on the radio (790) at 4:20PM.

Ziggy and his crew joined me at Bell Hall last night prior to the game, where food and drafts were typically awesome.  Remember that today is Sunday and some establishments may be closed.  I’ll likely just grab a snack and a beverage in the arena prior to the game unless one of the Juniors wants to go to Chickies.

Photo: Cheryl Pursell

What To Watch

  • I have no idea what Gordon is doing with the goalies so that doesn’t help predict today.  Lyon was OK as a couple of the goals were pretty fluky.  However, he is a little slow side-to-side sometimes and that cost him on one of them.  With the quick turnaround I think I’d go with Stolie tonight if it were up to me.  But we’ll see; I have no problem either way at this point.  Oh, one other thing:  I think Jarry of WBS over-sells the near post.  I’d be shooting far post on him next time around.  I hope they see that on the film if I’m correct.
  • Watch to see if Carey or Conner can return.  Otherwise Zengerle will be back in there; he’s been a healthy scratch lately.  And don’t be surprised if the lines jumble either officially or otherwise–or just the power play–to get the offense jump-started.
  • I said yesterday I liked the demeanor of this team.  I haven’t changed my mind even after the loss last night, but if I’m right then they need to respond today.  Watch to see if they come out with some jump and maintain a good level throughout the game.  This is one of those “empty the tanks” deals because they don’t play again until Friday and they don’t have to travel.
  • If I recall  correctly, Bridgeport doesn’t play a terribly complex game.  They have some big bodies; we really need to use skill and play our game to get quality chances and let the pucks fall where they may.
  • Do it consistently and get the win this afternoon.   Feel sorry for yourself from yesterday and start a funk that will foil our playoff hopes one way or another.
  • At times it seemed like the Phantoms were a bit more defensive-minded last night.  I don’t think that’s totally a bad thing, as they were out-shooting the Pens for most of the game.  It’s a way to win in the playoffs most nights.  However, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the team attack a little more aggressively this afternoon.
  • A four point swing in the magic number is at stake.  And speaking of stakes, we can drive one into Bridgeport with a regulation win.  This is an important game.

Looking Ahead

No matter what happens this afternoon, we’ll see them again on Friday, right back here at the Pawlowski Palace before heading out on the road to Wilkes Barre and Hershey for a three-game weekend to open April.

 

See you at the arena,

@Kram209



Categories: Kram's Korner - From the Club Level, Phantoms Hockey

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