Charlotte Checkers lose a close game in OT to Oklahoma City.

First, a few administrative notes:

  • Holy cow, Queen city! Could today have been a more beautiful day? Blue sky, warm weather, and I get to sit on my patio sipping a beer writing my post-game story while my 11-year old puppy Will Shakespeare rolls in the grass. Life is good.
  • Every four years, February is my favorite month. I can feel, taste and smell (in my dreams, anyway) the Olympic ice. And I’m not just talking about hockey (USA USA USA!).  Curling is possibly my favorite Olympic winter sport, and I am also a huge fan of short track speed skating. And Olympic ski jumping for women this year! It’s a first!!! I can’t wait for those events to begin.
  • Knit your own Team USA hat like the athlete's are wearing in Sochi! (Designed by me, photo credit -  E. Kinsman)
    Knit your own Team USA hat like the athlete’s are wearing in Sochi! (Designed by me, photo credit – E. Kinsman)

    And about the Olympics, do you want your very own Team USA themed hand knit hat? I designed a free pattern that replicates the hat our team wore in the opening ceremonies.  You can download it here.

  • Speaking of February, happy birthday to Chasing Checkers.  According to my hosting site, it celebrated it’s anniversary this week. I can’t believe I’m going into my fourth year here. What a fun and wild ride it’s been.

A giveaway by Charlotte Checkers captain Brett Sutter in front of Mike Murphy resulted in an overtime defeat by the Oklahoma City Barons. They won the game 4-3 in another heated matchup between the two Western division rivals. The one point OT loss by the Checkers ended the team’s three game regulation losing streak.

The first period looked good with a nice goal from Justin Shugg that went over the Baron’s Richard Bachman’s blocker. The steep angle made it a nearly impossible shot to stop.  Shugg, who has appeared pretty regularly on the scoresheet for Charlotte, made his first appearance in the goal column in six games.  He now has six points (3g, 3a) in eight appearances against Oklahoma City.

Brendan Woods, who had family in attendance, had a stellar game. After missing nearly two weeks to an injury in January, this was his first goal in only his fourth game back.  He nearly missed having a Gordie Howe hat trick after a fight with Baron’s tough guy Ben Eager.  Woods ended the night with one goal, one fight, four shots and nine PIMs.

AS0D3361“I guess you can look at the positive and we got one point, but we’d like to have two (points) with the standings being so close,” Woods stated, “These next few games will be crucial.”

Forward lines were moved around, with Chris Terry moving off of the top-scoring line with Zach Boychuk.

Coach Jeff Daniels acknowledged the change was meant to shake things up a bit.  “We were trying to get more balance and more scoring throughout our forward lines. I thought a couple lines were good and a couple were just okay.”

Brody Sutter scored with 37 seconds to go in the game, tying it at three a piece and leading the team to overtime.  The excitement was short lived, as halfway through overtime, a costly giveaway by Brett Sutter led to a goal by the Baron’s Roman Horak.

With a bit of a grin, Woods acknowledged that having family in attendance added to his energy. With his dad an assistant coach in Anaheim, his mom and dad were both able to make it to this afternoon’s game.  “It definitely gives you a little extra jump. I’m sure she was a little nervous with that fight against Ben Eager, but yeah, it was fun.”

The Charlotte Checkers had another sellout this afternoon. It's great to see the arena filled to capacity on a regular basis! (Photo - Jenni Propst)
The Charlotte Checkers had another sellout this afternoon. It’s great to see the arena filled to capacity on a regular basis! (Photo – Jenni Propst)

The Checkers head into the (brief) All-Star break with a few days of rest after a tough travel schedule, and return on Friday for a couple of “home” games in Raleigh. They sit a few points out of a playoff spot, and divisional games will continue to be incredibly important, especially the two against Abbotsford next weekend, who sit atop the West division.


3 thoughts on “Charlotte Checkers lose a close game in OT to Oklahoma City.

  1. Brett Sutter was definitley mad at himself. He dropped an “F” bomb and took two whacks at the exit door off the ice breaking his stick. I was very happy with the way the team played on Sunday compared to the way that they played on Friday. Speaking of Friday. What was your opinion of the Jerseys. Noticebly absent was any pink ribbon. Other than the “Go Jen Go” on the lowr back of the jersey, you might not have known that this was a pink in the rink jersey at all. I think that might have had something to do with the lower prices that you saw on the jerseys also the fact that just two weeks earlier there was a jersey auction as well. Hope to see you soon.

    1. First, I must confess, I was not at the game on Friday. I saw a few people wearing their jerseys, and have a few personal opinions about them.

      1. I thought the lack of significant PINK on the jerseys was incredibly disappointing. They were mostly red with tiny accents of pink. Not a fan of that. They looked like Valentine’s day jerseys, not pink ones.
      2. I didn’t notice the lack of a ribbon, but there’s a lot of weird copyright and crap about ribbons. Like… they are logos. Susan G. Komen has a copyrighted logo of a ribbon, so it’s sometimes hard to use a ribbon logo because they are so overruling about their own version of the ribbon. And Komen wasn’t one of the benefactors, so that could be a big part of it’s absence. Go Jen Go (and other grassroots Breast Cancer research and service organizations) were the benefactors of the Checkers pink in the rink, so I’m glad GJG had a patch. Was there another “sponsor” logo on the chest like in years past?
      3. What I love the most about the Checkers and their Pink in the Rink is it helps LOCAL organizations. The grassroot variety that help real people, and don’t just spend their money on advertising dollars and employee salaries. I LOVE THAT. I personally have adopted a “only give money to grassroot orgs” policy. I don’t give money to the American Red Cross or Susan G. Komen, etc. I want my dollars to go to the cause, not the organization, and huge organizations have huge overhead and I don’t want to pay for TV commercials. So, way to go Checkers for supporting local, small orgs!
      4. I have no idea how much jerseys are going for these days. I stopped going to the auctions when they were selling for 2-3 times what I could afford. I’m making 2014 another jersey-free buying year for me! I agree, maybe people are spending less because there are going to be more auctions this season?

      1. They were actually fairly reasonable this year 16 of the jerseys went for 500 or less and only one went for more than my rent (Muse went for $2200). I wasn’t intending on buying one but when I got Victor Risk for $300 I could pass on that. Minimum bis was $275..

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