Monday, March 31, 2014

The Playoffs - The Schedule & The Rules

The one outcome that most associated with "Team Allen" didn't want to happen has happened. Brampton won and Tulsa lost their final game of the season which means Allen plays Brampton and Denver plays Tulsa in the opening round of the playoffs. If there is a silver lining in what will be a long and expensive trip to Brampton it is that many of the players will have friends and family attend the games since it is close to home.

Here is the first round schedule for all four series:

Opening Round – Series “A” (best-of-7)
Missouri Mavericks (1) vs. Arizona Sundogs (8)
Game 1 – Fri., Apr. 4 – Arizona at Missouri, 7:05
Game 2 – Sun., Apr. 6 – Arizona at Missouri, 6:10
Game 3 – Wed., Apr. 9 – Missouri at Arizona, 6:35
Game 4 – Fri., Apr.1 1– Missouri at Arizona, 7:05
*Game 5 – Sat., Apr. 12 – Missouri at Arizona, 7:05
*Game 6 – Tue., Apr. 15 – Arizona at Missouri, 7:05
*Game 7 – Wed., Apr. 16 – Arizona at Missouri, 7:05

Opening Round – Series “B” (best-of-7)
Denver Cutthroats (2) vs. Tulsa Oilers (7)
Game 1 – Fri., Apr. 4 – Denver at Tulsa, 7:35
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 5 – Denver at Tulsa, 7:35
Game 3 – Wed., Apr. 9 – Tulsa at Denver, 7:00
Game 4 – Fri., Apr. 11 – Tulsa at Denver, 7:00
*Game 5 – Sat., Apr. 12 – Tulsa at Denver, 6:00
*Game 6 – Tue., Apr. 15 – Denver at Tulsa, 7:05
*Game 7 – Thu., Apr. 17 – Tulsa at Denver, 7:00

Opening Round – Series “C” (best-of-7)
Allen Americans (3) vs. Brampton Beast (6)
Game 1 – Wed., Apr. 2 – Brampton at Allen, 7:05
Game 2 – Thu., Apr. 3 – Brampton at Allen, 6:05
Game 3 – Thu., Apr. 10 – Allen at Brampton, 7:00
Game 4 – Fri., Apr. 11 – Allen at Brampton, 7:30
*Game 5 – Sun., Apr. 13 – Allen at Brampton, 4:00
*Game 6 – Wed., Apr. 16 – Brampton at Allen, 7:05
*Game 7 – Thu., Apr. 17 – Brampton at Allen, 7:05

Opening Round – Series “D” (best-of-7)

Rapid City Rush (4) vs. Quad City Mallards (5)
Game 1 – Fri., Apr. 4 – Quad City at Rapid City, 7:05
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 5 – Quad City at Rapid City, 7:05
Game 3 – Wed., Apr. 9 – Rapid City at Quad City, 7:05
Game 4 – Fri., Apr. 11 – Rapid City at Quad City, 7:05
*Game 5 – Sat., Apr. 12 – Rapid City at Quad City, 7:05
*Game 6 – Tue., Apr. 15 – Quad City at Rapid City, 7:05
*Game 7 – Wed., Apr. 16 – Quad City at Rapid City, 7:05

*if necessary
**all times local**

When you look at the schedules some thing stand out:

- Three of the series are 2-3-2 with the higher seeded team starting at home but the Denver vs Tulsa series is a 2-3-1-1 with the first two games in Tulsa on Friday and Saturday. With this first round schedule you can see why Tulsa was not disappointed in losing to Denver 2-0 yesterday and dropping to the seventh seed. Ryan Menei, Todd Robinson, Ben Gordon and Shane Madalora did not play in the game for Tulsa and some of their other key players played sparingly. Certainly nothing wrong with this approach as I am sure most teams would have done the same thing given the circumstances.

- Despite being the third seed Allen will not get a weekend game in the first round even if the series goes seven games. This is caused by a scheduling conflict at the Allen Event Center (AEC) this coming weekend. The AEC will be hosting a gun show. It will be a difficult marketing job for the Allen sales force with limited time before the first playoff game (Wednesday), a 6:05 pm start on Thursday, and games six and seven, if necessary also being midweek.

- There is a full week between games two and three in the Allen vs. Brampton series. That is a long time between games even with the long distances that have to be traveled. I have heard the team will be taking the bus to Brampton rather than flying but have not confirmed that with any team official. The driving distance to Brampton is approximately 1400 miles. On the return trip to Allen from Brampton if games six and seven are necessary, the teams only have three days between games.


- A good part of the day today (Monday) will be spent putting together the playoff roster which is due to the league office by 3:00 pm central time. Meetings will take place with players and with doctors in an effort to put together the best roster possible.

- The rules on setting the playoff roster are a little bit complicated so will try cover the pertinent ones. The playoff roster can consist of:
19 active players
1 injured reserve player
2 amateur players
1 emergency back up goaltender

19 active players - this is the group of players from which you would pick the 18 players (sixteen skaters & two goalies) that play in each game. It means in theory you would have one healthy scratch player each game. It is possible depending on how quickly injured guys are healing this 19th player will be injured but on the active roster. There is no way to add players to the active roster once submitted today.

1 injured reserve player - this is a player that is on the roster but cannot play in the entire first series. It has to be a player that was on the inured reserve at the end of the season. Kale Kerbashian or Trevor Hendrikx could be candidates for this IR slot depending on what the doctors say about their injures when examined today. Remember, whoever is put on this playoff IR spot will not play in the first round of the playoffs. They can play in the second round but another player from the 19 active group would then have to be placed in the IR slot.

2 amateurs - in addition to the 20 professional players (19 active & 1 IR) on the playoff roster each team can have two amateurs on the playoff roster. These amateurs can be added anytime during the playoffs but there can only be two. Remember, this is not two amateur slots but two players. Once you name two players you can't add another amateur even if one of the two gets injured. Coach Martinson has already signed one of these players (Cain Franson) and is hoping to hold off in signing the second amateur until after the first round as a bigger pool will be available around April 14. If he gets bad news on injuries he may have to sign the second amateur sooner than planned.

1 emergency back up goalie - this is a goalie that the team can sign to play just only in case of injury. You can only have one of these during the entire playoffs and they do not have to be signed and put on the roster when it is submitted later today. You can sign the emergency back up goalie at anytime during the playoffs but are limited to only one player. Coach Martinson has told me he does have plans to sign an emergency back up goalie.

So there are the rules. Once all of the teams submit their rosters the CHL will make them available to all of the teams. This should happen on Tuesday. 

Courtesy CHL Memes

Courtesy CHL Memes

DID YOU KNOW: Allen's first franchise playoff series in 2010 was a dramatic seven game series with the Laredo Bucks in which Allen came back after being down in games 3-2. Bruce Graham and Jordie Benn (now with the Dallas Stars) had goals in the seventh game victory.


  1. I really would like to see Ben Owen who teaches a lot of classes over at the ACIR and has played triple A for the Stars and for the Brahmas in the NAHL signed as the other amateur. The kid is outstanding and this would give him the opportunity to prove himself.

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