Friday, October 9, 2009

Tonight’s Preview: The Rockets and Giants are meeting for the second time this season. These two teams clashed on opening night, with the Giants using a shorthanded/penalty shot goal in a 6-5 overtime win. Following tonight’s game, these two teams meet again October 24th in Kelowna. The Rockets enter tonight’s game having won four straight, having out-scored the opposition 24-11. During the streak the Rockets have averaged 6 goals per game. Following tonight’s game the Rockets host Prince George tomorrow night before entertaining the Tri City Americans on Tuesday.

Looking Back: The Kelowna Rockets return to Pacific Coliseum for the first time since last years WHL Western Conference final. The Rockets beat the Giants in six games, winning game one in Vancouver (4-2) before dropping game two (4-3 in OT). The Rockets won game five in Vancouver by a 1-0 score. Mark Guggenberger made 25 saves in the win while Ryley Grantham scored the lone goal.

‘Giant’ Undertaking: The Rockets were just 1-3-0-0 in four regular season games at Pacific Coliseum last season. The only win was a 6-2 victory February 20th. The Rockets were 3-2-0-0 in 2007/08 and 0-3-1-0 in 2006/07. Since the start of the 2005/06 season the Rockets are a combined 6-10-1-0 in 17 regular season games at the ‘Rink on Renfrew’.

What a difference a year makes: Stepan Novotny leads the Rockets with 8 goals and 6 assists for 14 points in just 7 games. Novotny had just one point – a goal – in his first seven games last season. Novotny has registered a point in six of his last seven games. The only game where Novotny has been held off the score-sheet was in a 6-1 loss in Tri City September 19th.

‘Power’ to the people: The Rockets have scored eight power play goals (8/22=36.4%) in their last four games. The Rockets have scored a power play goal in six of the seven games this season. The Rockets were 0/8 in a 4-1 loss in Kamloops September 25th.

Who’s Hot – Who’s Not: Brandon McMillan has points in all six games he’s played this season. McMillan has 2+9=11 this season. Stepan Novotny has points in 6 of the 7 games this season. Shane McColgan is riding a four game point streak (2+5=7). Mitchell Callahan has points in three of his last four games (2+1=3). Kyle St. Denis has six points in his last three games (4+2=6). Rookie Brett Bulmer has points in three of his last four games. Bulmer has 3+3=6. Lucas Bloodoff has goals in three of his last five games.

Game Day Tidbits: The Rockets are 4-2-1-0 after seven games this season. Last year the Rockets were 3-4-0-0 after seven games…The Rockets have scored 31 goals in seven games this season after scoring 22 times in the teams first seven games one season ago…The Rockets have allowed 27 goals against this season after surrendering 26 goals after seven games last year…Seven of Stepan Novotny’s eight goals this season have been scored on home ice. Novotny has 27 career goals, 17 of which have been scored at Prospera Place…Goaltender Adam Brown has played in all seven games this season…Three of the Rockets next four games are on home ice…Ryan Huska coached in his 150th WHL game last Saturday in Chilliwack. Huska has 89 regular season victories…The Rockets acquired 19 year-old Tyler Matheson from Saskatoon September 28th for a 7th round draft pick in 2010…Kyle Verdino played in his 100th career game Wednesday night against Medicine Hat…The Rockets have participated in 27 shootout games since the new format was implemented for the start of the 2005/06 season. The Rockets are 12 and 15…The last time the Rockets played a game on October 9th was back in 2004, when they recorded a 2-1 overtime victory over Red Deer. Blake Comeau scored the game winner at the 3:07 mark of the extra session.

Rockets Next 5 Games:

vs. Cougars Oct 10th

vs. Americans Oct 13th

vs. Tips Oct 17th

@ Tri City Oct 23rd

vs. Giants Oct 24


acco said...

Hi Regan, with the Oct 15 deadline approaching, do you see the Rockets picking up a 3rd overager? Seems like they could use some help on D.

Regan Bartel said...

I can't see why they wouldn't add another 20 year-old considering they are one of the youngest teams in the WHL. But this 20 year-old has to be able to contribute. No point filling the spot with someone who could take valuable ice time away from a younger player.