Pre and post-game thoughts are all pretty jumbled, so let’s have a look at them together!
Last night, the star of the evening was hands-down, Barons netminder Yann Danis. Obviously, a shutout is an impressive feat, but how he got it was just incredible. Danis made amazing save after amazing save. I’ve followed Danis’ career for a long, long time, and it’s great to see him excelling in Oklahoma City, but I REALLY WANT THE CHECKERS TO BEAT HIM TONIGHT! He’s played at the NHL, KHL and AHL levels, and was a standout for four years at Brown University. Some of the netminders he’s shared time with (usually as their backup) include names like Martin Brodeur, Jaroslav Halak and Carey Price, all of whom have become hugely successful starting netminders in the NHL…talk about an all-star list!
- While from a purely statistical black-and-white standpoint, the Checkers lost last night, in their play on the ice, it was a win. The Checkers, once again, were playing playoff-caliber hockey, and we’re barely a month into the season.
- Just to refresh your memory, one month into the season last year, Justin Pogge had already been pulled once for a terrible loss/temper flare up, and the Checkers were playing games with scores like 5-2 (that was a loss against Hershey) and there were countless high-scoring games. Seeing 1-0 and 2-1 contests is a good thing, if you ask me. (Plus, would you rather lose 1-0, or 5-1? I’ll take a close, competitive game any day!)
- I really really really missed seeing Chris Terry on the ice, and so did the team. Terry is an all-around player… he’s defensively responsible. He’s an incredible scorer. He plays on the penalty kill and the power play. Those are shoes not anyone can step into.
- Justin Soryal (10PIM) and Triston Grant (12PIM) each lead their team in the first two contests between Charlotte and Oklahoma city in Penalties in Minutes. They have fought in each of the Checkers first two matchups with the Barons. Will tonight make them three-for-three? Is that really a streak we want or need to see?
- I would expect to see Mike Murphy start tonight against Oklahoma City. The Barons are also in the middle of a three-in-three with a game tomorrow in Milwaukee, so starting Yann Danis tonight depends on their plans in net for tomorrow.
Gametime: 8:05 p.m. EST