Notes from last night in Oklahoma City:
- The possibility of a close game or a total blowout last night were both equally possible. I’m happy it was a close game, with the Checkers coming out on top!
- Once again, Mike Murphy was phenomenal in goal. He stopped all but one of the 23 SOG the Barons had. The Checkers did a great job preventing the Barons from getting to the net, which is a skill that has been lacking at times this season.
- Matt Pistilli continues to impress, and his game-winning-goal with :43 seconds left was incredible! That’s one hot stick!
- Brett Sutter, after a four-game stint with the Hurricanes, was returned to Charlotte following the Canes defeat of the Blackhawks.
- Only 2500 people were at the game in Oklahoma City… I guess I expected more on a Friday night in a pretty major-market!
- Barons ice girls have appropriate, modest uniforms that didn’t make me cringe. They also have less annoying ads on their scoreboard. While I totally understand that the advertisements pay the bills, Charlotte has an EXCESSIVE amount of them, announcing every little thing during the game and each TV time out.
Tonight marks the first contest between Charlotte and San Antonio. Jared Staal is a former Rampage (that sounds grammatically incorrect, but I think that just like a Moose or a Deer, a Rampage is both singular and plural). He played a very brief time there as a Coyotes prospect. The Rampage are in their first year as the AHL affiliate of the Florida Panthers, a team not particularly well-known for their prospect development.
- The Rampage lost at home last night to Houston by a score of 4-2.
- Like the Checkers, the Rampage share an arena with an NBA team, and like Charlotte, are the sole occupants of said arenas until the NBA lockout ends (rather, IF it ends!)
- San Antonio has the worst penalty kill in the AHL, successful only 65.7%
- With the Return of Brett Sutter, one forward will need to be scratched tonight. Cedric McNicoll left the game in the second period with an injury last night and is an obvious candidate to be scratched.
- Wacey Rabbit is a member of the San Antonio Rampage. I think it’s safe to say that he has THE BEST name in the AHL. Say it out loud… it’ll make you smile! He has split time between ECHL Cincinatti and the Rampage. In three games this year with San Antonio, he has 4 PIM and is a -1.
Gametime: 8:00 p.m. EST