Can the Kelowna Rockets beat the Portland Winterhawks tonight, ending the Hawks quest of tying a franchise record for wins on home ice?
You bet they can.
Reason #1. Tonight's game will be played at the Rose Garden, the same building the Rockets won two of three games in during their second round playoff series with the Hawks last season. The Rockets won game one and five in that building. Who can forget Jessey Astles overtime winner in game five? The Hawks go for their 16th consecutive home ice win tonight, which in the process, would tie a franchise record set during the 1993-94 season.
The other variable heading into tonight's game is it is Friday the 13th. On a day like that, anything can happen.
All joking aside, AM 1150 has tonight's game from the Rose Garden, starting with the pre-game show at 6:30 and the play-by-play at 7 o'clock. The Rockets will need to take fewer penalties while showing more urgency on the power play.
Wednesday night the Rockets were just one for six on the power play while surrendering two shorthanded goals. The Rockets are now tied for the league lead in shorthanded goals allowed with 11. The Hawks also scored the two-first period goals on the power play. Overall, the specialty teams will have to be a whole lot better for the Rockets to do something that only Tri City and Kamloops has been able to accomplished this season.
That is beating the Winterhawks in their own backyard.