Tonight’s Preview: The Rockets and Giants are meeting for the 6th time this season. The Rockets are 0-5-0-0 against the Giants this season, having been out-scored 24-11. Following tonight’s game these two teams meet February 20th in Vancouver before concluding the eight game seasonal series March 7th in Kelowna. The Giants have out-shot the Rockets in four of the five games. The exception was November 12th in a Giants 3-1 win. The Rockets out-shot the visitors 37-24. The Giants have also scored two or more power play goals in four of the five games. The Rockets are 6 for 25=24% with the extra man while the Giants are 11 for 34=32.4%. Following tonight’s game the Rockets host Prince George tomorrow night before traveling to Portland for a Monday afternoon affair. The Rockets enter a portion of their schedule playing ten games in the next 15 nights. The Rockets have points in 9 (7-0-1-1) straight games, with their last regulation loss January 21st in a 6-4 setback to the Giants.
Seasonal Series Breakdown:
Period: 1 2 3 Total
Rockets 4 2 5 11
Giants 6 4 14 24
* Tyson Sexsmith has started in all five games against the Rockets this season. Adam Brown has played in three of the five games while Mark Guggenberger and Kris Lazaruk have also played a game against the Giants this season.
Last Game: Colin Long scored twice, once on the power and once shorthanded in a 2-1 win in Spokane Sunday. The two teams were tied at one heading into the third period before Long scored the game winner with the extra man at the 7:18 mark in the 3rd frame. The Rockets out-shot the Chiefs 31-25. The Rockets were 1/3 on the power play while the Chiefs were 0 for 3.
Very Interesting! The Rockets are 19-2-0-0 when Colin Long scores…Long registered his 200th and 201st career points in Sunday’s win. Who was the last Rockets player to hit the 200 point plateau? Tyler Mosienko. Mosienko had 232 points in five seasons, including 51 points in 72 games in 2004-2005…The Rockets clinched a playoff spot thanks to the Giants win over Chilliwack Wednesday night. It’s the 17th time in the Rockets 18 years that they earned a playoff spot…The Rockets 22 home ice wins this season is one better than the teams 21 home ice victories one season ago…Goaltender Mark Guggenberger has started 8 of the last 10 games.…Tyson Barrie has set a new career high in point with 47, bettering his 43 point effort in his rookie season…The Rockets won their 30th game of the season last Tuesday night in Kamloops. It marked the 14th time in franchise history that the Rockets have enjoyed a 30+ win season. The Rockets last failed to win 30 games during the 2006-2007 campaign, when the team won just 22 times…The Rockets have just 17 games left in the regular season. Eleven of those 17 are on the road. The Rockets have out-shot the opposition in 12 of the 13 games since the trade deadline. The Rockets are averaging 42 shots per game over that period while giving up 25 fewer shots a game, or 16.7 per game. Only Tri City and Vancouver have out-shot the Rockets since the trade deadline…The Rockets power play is 15 for 42 in their last eight games (35.7%). The Rockets have scored two or more power play goals in six of their last nine games. The Rockets are 7-3-1-2 in thirteen games since the trade deadline.
New Faces Contribute: Mikael Backlund has 5+8=13 in his first thirteen games. Ian Duval has 5+7=12 in his first nine games with the Rockets. Riley Grantham has 0+4=4 in his first 12 games, including two fighting majors. Goaltender Mark Guggenberger is 7-2-1-1 with the Rockets, with wins over Kamloops (twice), Everett, Spokane, Medicine Hat, Prince George and Tri City.
Bennie And The Jets: Jamie Benn has ten goals in his last nine games, and has goals in five of his last seven. Benn is the first Rockets player to register back-to-back 30 goal seasons since Justin Keller had 31 goals in 2004-2005 and scored 51 times in 2005-2006. Benn has eleven points in his last seven games (8+3=11), and points in seven of his last ten games. Benn has 126 career points in just 92 games.
Who’s Hot: Colin Long has seven goals in his last nine games. Long has points in 8 of his last 9 games with 7+6=13 over that period. Stepan Novotny has 3+3=6 in his last seven games. Ian Duval has goals in eight of his last twelve games. Brandon McMillan has 5+10=15 in his last 19 games. Tyler Myers has points in six of his last nine games (1+7=8). Lucas Bloodoff has not scored in 15 games. Prior to the drought the 19 year-old had six goals in four games.
By The Numbers: Since re-locating to Kelowna from Tacoma for the start of the 1995-96 season, the Rockets have played 991 regular season games. The Rockets have won 503 times while based in Kelowna.
Broadcaster Tidbits: The Rockets have scored 6 or more goals – ten times this season. The Rockets have managed to score 6 or more goals three times against the Cougars, twice against Kamloops, with single game outbursts against Medicine Hat, Kootenay, Everett, Chilliwack and Seattle. Last season the Rockets scored 6 or more goals 12 times… The Rockets are 29-6-0-1 when they score 3 or more goals. The Rockets are 10-10-0-2 in games where they’ve allowed 3 or more goals.