What a beautiful day. It was 54 degrees, no wind and no rain.
But just when you think everything is great, you have Mexican food for dinner at the rink and spill on the white shirt. Great. There was no way I was eating the mystery food in the media room tonight. It's like five games in a row now that the dinner fare has been questionable. They usually have salad, but lately even that looks days old. I think they are pushing leftovers from other events. I shouldn't complain, they are offering us a free meal ... but free doesn't always mean good.
We were welcomed tonight with a 12-foot long Americans jersey hanging from the rafters. It is about 6 to 7 feet wide and hangs opposite of the Zamboni doors. King Kong could wear this thing. It's kind of cool.
Tonight, the Everett Silvertips are in town. The Tips are coming off a 3-2 overtime loss to Portland on Friday. The Americans enjoyed their first Friday off since Nov. 5.
According to Everett beat writer Nick Patterson, Tips captain Landon Ferraro is out indefinitely. He will undergo surgery to repair a sports hernia. With Ferraro out, Everett’s captaincy was handed to Ryan Murray. Murray, at 17, becomes the youngest captain in Tips franchise history by a long shot. No other Everett captain has been younger than 19.
Everett coach Craig Hartsburg is back behind the bench after having heart surgery late last year. Glad to see him back at work.
The Americans have their injuries as well, with forwards Neal Prokop (leg) and Jordan Messier (concussion) in the sidelines, along with D-man Sam Grist, who was shaken up against Portland and isn’t 100 percent. People have seen these guys during games walking around and wonder (aloud to me) why they can’t play. Simple. Putting a player in a physical game like hockey, when they aren’t 100 percent healthy, puts the athlete at risk for more injuries or worse injuries. You have to give them time to heal properly. Trust me, they want to play as badly as you want to watch them.
Drew Owsley in in goal for the Ams, while Kent Simpson is minding the crease for Everett.
Two referees tonight: Trent Knorr and Colby Smith.
Of note, Kamloops defenseman Josh Caron, who was given a spearing major Wednesday after sticking Americans D-man Tyler Schmidt in the gut, has had his major penalty downgraded to a minor penalty by WHL disciplinarian Rick Doerksen, thus he will not face a suspension.
The puck drops in a couple of minutes. Join me during the break.
Let's hear it for former Ams goalie Chet Pickard, who backed the Cincinnati Cyclones to a 4-3 win over Kalamazoo in ECHL action. Chet had 31 saves.
Not such good news for Carey Price and the Montreal Canadiens, who rallied to tie the game in the third, but lost 4-3 in a shootout. Pricey had 23 saves.
Brian Boucher and the Philadelphia Flyers also lost, 3-1 to New Jersey. Brian had 19 saves.
Former Ams D-man T.J. Fast was recalled to the Rochester Americans of the American Hockey League. Fast, a 23-year-old native of Calgary, will make his first trip to the AHL this season after posting 17 points (7 goals, 10 assists) and 28 penalty minutes in 38 games with the Cincinnati Cyclones in 2010-11. The 2005 second-round selection (60th overall) of the Los Angeles Kings is currently second among team defensemen in scoring and 16th among ECHL rearguards overall.
Here at Toyota Center, the Ams took a 3-0 lead, Everett came back with a pair, and Adam Hughesman scored his second of the night for a 4-2 lead after one.
There are free Chalupas for everyone.
Of note, Tyler Schmidt upended Everett's Cody Fowlie with an open-ice hit. Skate with your head down and you pay the price. It was a clean hit, no penalty called, but Everett's Nick Walters took exception and jumped Schmidt. Tyler worked him over.
And let's not forget Matt MacKenzie's tilt with Everett's Ryan Harrison, who picked the fight. Big Mac made Harrison pay the price. Harrison was over matched from the first punch.
The Americans lead 7-4 after the second period. Adam Hughesman has a hat trick and all the fans will get Chaluapas, Burger Ranch and free bread sticks from Pizza Hut. There should be a bonus coupon for a cholesterol test.
It has been an entertaining game. Just when you think the Americans are going to run away with things, the Tips come back with a goal. Good stuff going on here.
While goals were plentiful the first two periods, there weren't any in the third. Final 7-4 Ams.