Columns & Blogs

Game Day: Hawks at Americans

It's Nuclear Night here at Toyota Center. There are (I'm sure that's were by now) 22 lime green pucks for sale — one for each player — autographed, no less. There are Nuclear Night shirts and sweatshirts for sale and later tonight, the nuclear-inspired jerseys the players are wearing in the game will be auctioned on-line starting at 10 p.m. tonight. Starting bid is $200, with a $500 buy-it-now price. To make a bid, go here. The bidding will end Feb. 2 at 10 p.m. — providing there are any left at that point. All money earned goes to the players' education fund.

I was told there was super duper hot salsa up in the Sunset Lounge, so Robyn and I went to check it out. The sign said Atomic Salsa. With the help of Mark and Devon, we did a little experiment. We took an ice cube and put it in a little dish and put some of the Atomic Salsa on top of the ice cube. The salsa melted the ice cube — not all the way, but it was a working on it. Even with this happening before her eyes, Robyn decided that she wanted to test out the salsa. I told her not to, but she's an adventurous gal. She had less than a teaspoon on her chip and in her mouth it went. Then, she had another bite. Long story short, she was in pain. Her ear hurt, she was sweating and ran down the stairs in search of relief. She's doing OK now, but a little ice cream is making it better.

In the NHL draft for the All-Star game, former Ams goalie Carey Price was chosen for Team (Eric) Staal. He was the third goalie chosen for the team behind Cam Ward and Henrik Lundqvist. Also on Team Staal are Mark Staal (like his brother would let him play for the enemy), Alex Ovechkin, Zdeno Chara and Patrick Sharp. Mr. Irrelevant was Phil Kessel of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

The fine folks from FSN are here tonight to broadcast the game. There are cameras everywhere, wires on the stairs and hanging overhead. Needless to say, they take over the place. Good exposure for the teams and the league. They couldn't have picked a better night. It's standing room only.

Tonight marks the first of three straight weekends the Americans and Winterhawks will meet. Next week, they play at Portland, and they are back in Portland on Feb. 11. Crucial points on the line in these games.

The Americans had their 13-game home win streak snapped Sunday by Kelowna, but they are ready to start over. Jordan Messier and Sam Grist are back in the lineup and Neal Prokop (who turns 21 today) is likely to be back next week.

In goal are Drew Owsley for the Americans and Mac Carruth for Portland. Carruth is 2-1 against TC this year, allowing 10 goals.

Tough guy Tayler Jordan is back for the Winterhawks after sitting out a couple weeks with an abdominal injury. His first first practice was Tuesday and tonight is his first game back. Brett Ponich is still out with a knee injury and Oliver Gabriel is out the rest of the season with a shoulder injury.

Tonight is Ams' D-man Matt MacKenzie's 200th WHL game.

The action begins soon. Stop by later for an update.


The Americans are leading 2-0 with a pair of goals from Kruise Reddick. Jordan Messier made a huge play on the second one. Nice to see him back on the ice.

The Americans will have 1:59 on the power play to open the second.

In Spokane, the Chiefs and Chilliwack are tied at 2.


Kruise Reddick has a hat trick and the Americans have a 4-0 lead after two. Adam Hughesman also scored for Tri-City, his 32nd of the season.

Kruise gave the Americans free Chalupas in the first period and free Pizza Hut bread sticks in the second. One more goal and Burger Ranch joins the party. It will be a Fast Food hat trick.


Connor Rankin scored to send the masses to Burger Ranch, and Portland scored a couple of third-period goals as the Americans went on to win 5-2.

The Nuclear Night jerseys went up for auction 12 minutes ago. Get your bids in now.