“You know it’s all right. It’s OK.
I’ll live to see another day.”
-Bee Gees, Stayin’ Alive
After last night’s huge win in Chocolatetown, the Phantoms return to the friendly confines of the PPL Center for a series-deciding fifth game with the Hershey Bears.
Departing from our usual “Hockey Night” format to bring you a few quick thoughts in advance of the game this afternoon at 5:05PM (doors 4:00PM):
- Ouellette is stepping it up in goal. I had a feeling that he would, given the way he ended the season. Look for him to keep it up today.
- On the other end, I do get a little bit of a feeling that the Phantoms are starting to solve Pheonix Copley. It could be more down to the lineup changes (see below) but watching the highlights from last night I couldn’t help but feel that guys had a pretty good idea what they wanted to do against him and were able to convert in the decisive win.
- The defenders have been doing a good job keeping shots off Ouellette, too. I’m expecting that to continue today.
- The Bears made some lineup changes before last night’s game. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them reverse and go back to what was working last time they were in Allentown.
- I’m really curious to see the attendance today, as this game wasn’t “pre-sold” to the season ticket holders, was only pre-sold to those who bought tickets “strips” and there’s been less than 24 hours to sell single game tickets. Good seats still remain if you don’t already have yours. I’m expecting about 5,000 and I’m expecting the club side to be pretty, pretty empty. We’ll see. I could be wrong. There’s been talk about folks who couldn’t find seats.
- Remember to wear your orange. That said, I’m wearing a different orange than the jersey I wore for the first two games. Gotta change the mojo there.
- Great stuff around online about the Phans representing in Hershey. I wish I could have been there. I’m expecting a fair few Hershey fans today.
- Speaking of expectations, a look back at my series predictions shows I wasn’t right about very much. But I was right about it going to 5 games, so I’ll stick with that prediction and sign on for a Phantoms win today. I feel like 4-2.
- But the visitors have won every game in this series, so I’m not feeling terribly confident.
- In the other Atlantic series I had the Pens downing the Bruins easily in 4. Not so fast. They’ll be entangled in their own game 5 today at Casey Plaza. I’ve got Pens 6-1 in that one. They’ve had more trouble with Providence than some experts thought they would, but I think WBS can turn it on when they need to. And today, they need to. They’ll be finishing up as we get our first period started, so we’ll know early whom our potential partner is in the next round should we be so fortunate to advance.
- For more on this game, the rosters and the season series, see the media kit: bears playoffs 5
- For TV today use Service Electric TV-2/502 in PA and 22/522 in New Jersey.
- Officials: (not available yet; will update)
See you at the arena,