Friday, January 14, 2011

Nothing short of outstanding

  • Adam Brown left an old friend behind before suiting up Friday night against the Portland Winterhawks. But donning a new set of goalie pads and shelving his old, well worn ones didn't hurt one bit. Brown made 43 saves with his brand new pair of Reebok's in a 5-3 win over the Portland Winterhawks. Brown proved that he is indeed one of the best goaltenders in the WHL and the equipment he uses has little to do with his spectacular play.
  • Brown's best save may have come in the second period with a nice glove hand stop off of Hawks forward Nino Neidereitter. The 19 year-old had the lower part of the net labeled only to see Brown's glove get in the way.
  • No question this was the best game we've witnesses at Prospera Place this season. The opening period was especially entertaining as the two team's combined for 30 shots on goal. Portland had 19 after one period and had a 3-1 lead because of it. The Hawks received a late first period break when Neidereitter's shot after a face-off win appeared to glance off of Rockets defenceman Kevin Smith before going over the glove of Brown.
  • The Rockets ability to erase that two goal deficit and score four unanswered goals in the teams 23rd win of the season was awfully impressive. While Brown was the best player on the ice, the Rockets received outstanding efforts from all 18 skaters. Zach Franko and Geordie Wudrick had two goals while Tyson Barrie ended the night with three assists.
  • Franko's game winning goal late in the second period was spectacular. The 17 year-old drives hard to the net on the forehand and then at the last second goes to the back hand and roofs the puck over the glove of Hawks goaltender Mac Carruth. Franko's goal makes it 4-3 with 1:50 left to go in the second period.
  • Winning board battles was a pivotal part in the Rockets success. I thought Colton Sissons and Mitchell Callahan were extremely good in going to the dirty areas and making life difficult for the visitors. Geordie Wudick and Evan Bloodoff were also tough to play against. Wudrick was in on four (2+2=4) of the Rockets five goals.
  • The Hawks passing is nothing short of amazing. Their skill level allows their defenceman to make long lead passes that are tape-to-tape. For my money they are the best passing team in the league.
  • Net front presence was the story for the Rockets. They weren't scared to go hard to the net which was evident by a Evan Bloodoff goaltender interference penalty in the first period and Geordie Wudrick knocking the mask off of Mac Carruth in the second period during a goal mouth scramble.
  • Brett Bulmer played like a 2nd round pick Friday night against the Hawks. He was dangerous with the puck and often times controlled the play.
  • Tyson Barrie's three point effort moved him past the 200 point plateau for his career. Barrie now has 201 points.
  • The game featured seven power play chances in the first period alone. The final 40 minutes featured just three power plays - two for the Rockets and one for the Hawks.
  • The Rockets win snapped a seven game losing streak against the Hawks. It was the first win since March of 2009, when the Rockets were victorious 6-2.
  • This game showed just how scary the Rockets can be when they play an intense, in your face game. This is another reason to be excited about the playoffs in late March.
  • The photo of Zach Franko being closely guarded by Hawks d-man Brett Ponich is provided by photographer Marissa Baecker.


Aly said...

The best game this season! The energy from the fans were good too! Great job to all the rockets, and hats off to brown, he was outstanding!

Regan Bartel said...

Agreed, the crowd was in this game as much as the team. Loved it.

MG said...

HUGE win, against probably the one of top teams the WHL. Awesome.

Stu said...

Watched the game on TV ...what a game! Quite an amazing comeback from Brown as I thought he had blown all 4 tires at the end of the 1st.

g.k said...

Great game & yes by far the best game of the season!! But let's not have a let down against the Tigers tonight, we need to play with that intensity every night. If we do we will make alot of noise in the playoffs. Go Rockets!!!

divad said...

kudos to brown to shut the door after a little melt down in the last minute of the first. man oh man this team is fun to watch when they get going if only #29 could play up to his size it would be an added weapon... hope to see the same effort saturday go go go