- First up is the Tulsa Oilers on Wednesday night and it will definitely be a playoff atmosphere type of game at the Allen Event Center. The Americans are currently in fourth place in the division just two points ahead of fifth place Tulsa. The game on Wednesday is in essence a four point game because if Allen wins they will be four points ahead of Tulsa and if they loose they will be tied with the Oilers.
- There will be a complete game preview tomorrow but a couple of facts about this last game of the season against Tulsa. Both teams have been playing good hockey recently, Allen is 6-3-1-0 in their last 10 games and Tulsa is 6-2-0-2. The Oilers have been a good road team having earned points in 20 of their 33 road games.
- Even the most diehard Allen fans will need to pick up a lineup card as they enter the Allen Event Center Wednesday night. Goalie Jake Paterson (#39) has played two games in Allen and forward Thomas Frazee (#25) has played just one. Forwards Tristan King (#9), J.C. Campagna (#29), Alexandre Carrier (#33), and Tyler Poulsen (#77) all joined the team on the road.
- Just yesterday it was announced the Americans have signed forward Jared Bethune to an Amateur Tryout Contract. Jared just finished his junior career playing for the Prince George Cougars in the Western Hockey League where he played for former Allen assistant coach Richard Matvichuk. Jared was the leading scorer on the team with 69 points (21 goals 48 assists) and was an alternate captain. Bethune's teammates in the four years he played for Prince George included Colby McAuley and Zach Pochiro. Here is the press release issued by the Prince George Cougars: http://pgcougars.com/article/bethune-obrien-sign-amateur-tryouts-in-the-echl
- Here is an interview with Jared from October 2016 which was the start of his third year in Prince George and Richard Matvichuk's first season as the head coach.
- I saw on social media yesterday that Garet Hunt, who plays for the Jacksonville IceMen, just moved into seventh place on the all-time games played list for the ECHL. Hunt played for years in Stockton until they moved to the AHL, then moved to Alaska until they folded and signed with Jacksonville this year. In addition to ranking #7 on the all-time games played list Hunt is ranked #2 on the all-time ECHL penalty minutes list with 2383 and is just 42 penalty minutes from becoming #1. At 5'9" Hunt may be the best pound for pound fighter in the history of the ECHL.
- Reading about Garet Hunt's ranking on the ECHL all-time list got me wondering about who is the highest ranking player on the all-time list for each category the ECHL tracks that has played in Allen. It has always been a little frustrating looking at all-time offensive categories because there was so much more scoring in hockey 20-30 years ago. Allen has only been around nine years but many players that have played for the Americans have had long ECHL careers. It was fun looking up these stats and I hope you enjoy the results. Here is the highest ranked player on the ECHL career all-time list who has played in Allen:
Games Played - Mathieu Aubin is ranked #7 all-time with 592 games played
Points - Casey Pierro-Zabotel is ranked #29 all-time with 494 points
Goals - Mathieu Aubin is ranked #28 all-time with 192 goals
Assists - Casey Pierro-Zabotel ranks #12 all-time with 348 assists
Penalty Minutes - Darryl Bootland ranks #16 all-time with 1417 penalty minutes
Points Per Game Average - Chad Costello ranks #12 all-time at 1.58 (100 game minimum)
Casey Pierro-Zabotel turned 29 in November and can move way up the all-time list before he hangs up his skates. Casey is less than 100 points from breaking into the top 10 all-time in points. He is currently #12 all-time in assists but is only 43 assists away of from being #3 all-time.
- The Allen Americans will be honoring the Ludwig family at the game on March 24th. Tyler and Trevor are a big part of Allen history winning three championships with the Americans. Their dad, Craig, was a minority owner of the team in 2012-13 and spent time on the ice working with the defensemen as the team won their first championship. It should be a fun night having the Ludwig's back at the AEC. It will also be nice to see Taylor and Holly and hopefully all of the Ludwig kids. Tyler and Taylor have three girls while Trevor and Holly have a girl and a boy. Here are the details about the Ludwig night: https://allenamericans.com/americans-honor-first-family-hockey-dfw/
|Craig with Trevor left and Tyler right circa 1988|
- Don't forget I have a pair of tickets for the game tomorrow (Wednesday, March 21 at 7:05 PM). I will have a drawing for these free tickets this afternoon, notify the winner and leave the tickets at will call. If you are interested let me know by email (firstname.lastname@example.org). All I need is your name. The tickets are in the second row in Section 100 which is at the end of the rink Allen goes on offense twice. Good luck!
DID YOU KNOW: Chad Costello is ranked #18 on the ECHL all-time career assist list with 343 assists. The only reason Chad is ranked that low is because he has only played 309 games in the ECHL. He is the only player in the top 20 all-time that has more assists than games played.