It’s gameday, and I’m EXCITED! I missed the game on Tuesday, and almost every other game this month due to work, so seeing the team in person is going to be a treat!
Today is a big day for the Charlotte Checkers. It’s their third back-to-back start, and one can assume that it will be Justin Pogge’s third start as well, with Murphy still sidelined by his injury. While Pogge did win last night, he hasn’t been very unstoppable lately, or, in the case of a goalie, very stoppable… In Friday’s loss, in the final two minutes of the game he let in two goals after being strong all night. This is a bad habit I’ve noticed all season. He plays an ok, or even great game, then just kind of fades and gives up towards the end. Hopefully, today won’t be one of those games!
The Checkers are at home against Norfolk, and have already clinched the season series with a 6-2-0-2 record against the Admirals. Pogge is 5-2-1, with both of his losses coming at home. It’s important to note that in the Checkers 10-game series (of 12 total), three games have gone to the shootout, and two were ended in overtime. So half of all games have required more than 60 minutes of regulation to determine a winner. Needless to say, it should be an exciting matchup today.
According to the AHL, the magic number is three today for the Checkers to clinch a bid in the 2011 Playoffs. They can clinch today with:
(a) a win vs. Norfolk AND a Worcester loss (reg/OT/SO) vs. Adirondak, OR
(b) an OTL/SOL vs. Norfolk AND a Worcester regulation loss vs. Adirondack
So… GO PHANTOMS, right? It’s playoff time, so it’s perfectly acceptable to root for other AHL squads as long as it benefits the Checkers!