Monday, February 18, 2019

Allen Wins in Overtime Behind Alex Breton Hat Trick, Game Recap, Video Highlights, Martinson's Comments & More


After two disappointing losses on Friday and Saturday the Allen faithful were rewarded with a 5-4 entertaining win last night. The Americans overtime win over the Reading Royals came before a crowd of 3686 at the Allen Event Center (AEC). The game had a little bit of everything from a lot of goals, several fights, a delay of game penalty called on the fans for throwing underwear on the ice to a dramatic overtime goal for the game winner.


- The Americans gave up the first goal which is never a good sign but Allen came back as they did several times. During the course of the game the Americans trailed 1-0, 3-2 and 4-3 but never gave up. When Reading took the lead 4-3 early in the third period I am sure many thought not another third period debacle since the Americans were outscored 5-0 and 3-1 in the third period on Friday and Saturday. Allen tied the score 4-4 on Alex Breton's hat trick goal midway through the third period to send the game to overtime.


- Overtimes have not been Allen's friend. Prior to last night they had lost four overtime games in the last month and you have to go back to October 27 to find the last time the Americans won a game in overtime. It was clear coach Martinson was going for broke when he put out three offensive players (Breton, Bourbonnais, Salituro) to start the overtime. About 45 seconds into the overtime as the Americans were headed into their offensive zone Breton switched out for Makowski. As Makowski and Asuchak, who earlier switched out for Bourbonnais, circled behind the net from different directions the player covering Makowski was picked off by Asuchak and David was able to skate in front of the net unimpeded and bury the puck. If you were at the game you may have noticed Reading coach Kirk MacDonald confront the referee for not calling a penalty on Asuchak. Some folks I talked to thought it was a penalty and others felt it wasn't but the most important person (the referee) thought it was not a penalty. Check out the Sporfie highlights below to get two different angles of the play.


- Two things that worked in Allen's favor were shots and penalties. The Americans out shot Reading 37-34, it was the first time in the five meetings with the Royals that Allen had the edge in shots. In the first four games Reading out shot Allen 144-114. Neither team scored a power play goal but the power plays were five for the Royals and four for Allen. One of the Americans penalties was a delay of game penalty called on the fans. When you consider Allen is ranked #1 with 1146 penalty minutes and leads the league in minor penalties (318) while Reading is ranked #26 with 535 penalty minutes and have taken the fewest minor penalties (190) it is a win for Allen to have power play opportunities basically equal.


UNDIEGATE -  It was "Undie Sunday" yesterday and similar to the Teddy Bear Toss game, after the first goal scored by Allen fans threw unopened packages of underwear on the ice which will be donated to Allen Community Outreach. Everything went fine until Allen scored their second goal and more packages of underwear were thrown on the ice. The referee gave the crowd a warning not to throw anymore underwear on the ice, they should give them to an usher, but a few didn't get the message. After Allen scored their third goal a very few packages of underwear were thrown on the ice and the referee immediately called a delay of game on Allen. It seemed a bit harsh to me and there was not any malicious intent involved as fans were contributing to a charity cause and a few didn't understand the process. Luckily Reading did not score on the first power play ever at the Allen Event Center for throwing underwear.


- Alex Breton scored his first professional hat trick and didn't get the usual recognition with fans throwing hats on the ice. After UNDIEGATE fans were afraid to throw hats on the the ice. Wonder if the referee would have given the Allen fans another delay of game penalty if a bunch of hats had been thrown on the ice.


- The goal scorers for Allen were Alex Breton (10, 11, 12) Riley Bourbonnais (15) and David Makowski (10). Here are the Sporfie highlights for all five goals.

Alex Breton (1) - Dante Salituro does a lot of the work on this goal. Notice how he draws all five Reading players toward him as he carried the puck across the blue line and then passes to Breton who beats the goalie cleanly.





Alex Breton (2) - Several things to take note of on this goal. Reading gets caught on a bad shift change that puts three Americans behind the defense. Alex Breton gets a good jump off the bench on Allen's shift change. Adam Miller makes the pass to Breton and Alex puts the puck home for his second goal of the game.





Riley Bourbonnais - A great individual effort by Riley who circles the offensive zone and finds a lane to take a wrist shot. Notice how Salituro and Clark have the goalie completely screened.


  


Alex Breton (3) - A set play off the face off led to Breton's third goal. The key was Chase Lang winning the face off and getting the puck back to Alex. Mitch Maloney does a good job of preventing the Reading player from getting to Breton. Alex's 12th goal of the season is tied for second among all defensemen and his 35 points is also second.





David Makowski - Here are two views of Makowski's game winning goal. The first is a wide view of the play where you can see Salituro bring the puck up the ice and Breton heading to the bench in exchange for Makowski. The second clip is from behind the goalie where you can see the Royals player and Asuchak collide which opens thing up for Makowski.











Here is a five minute highlight package (no sound) with the goals, the scrums, the fights and some great saves by both goalies.




STEVE MARTINSON'S POST GAME COMMENTS




"We kept saying shoot the puck high on this goalie and we got it upstairs a few times including on the game winner."

"It was a nice little pick by Asuchak behind the net. It was a legal pick because he was entitled to that ice."

"We have some guys that have to get in a little better shape. We will take Monday off but then we will have three days to practice."

"The plan as of now is we will get Motte back before next weekend."



OTHER COMMENTS


- The Reading Royals are the only team in the ECHL that have not won an overtime game this season. They are now 0-4 in overtimes this season and have lost their last 13 games decided in overtime. The last time the Royals won a game in overtime was October 26, 2017. Allen's overtime win last night brings their overtime record to 2-4 this season.


- It won't get any easier for the Americans next weekend as they play the Utah Grizzlies three times (Friday, Saturday, Sunday). Utah is the top team in the Mountain Division and ranks fourth in the ECHL in points (67) and winning percentage (.670).


- Allen gave up 15 goals in three games this weekend and are the only ECHL team that has given up over 200 goals (202). They are about to pass their season total for goals allowed in 2016-17 (203), 2015-16 (204) and 2014-15 (203). Allen is on pace to allow 265 goals this season.





DID YOU KNOW: Alex Breton's hat trick last night was the 22nd since the Americans joined the ECHL in 2014. Alex is only the second defenseman to accomplish the feat. The other defenseman with a hat trick was Konrad Abeltshauser who got his on April 3, 2015 in an 8-1 win over Brampton at the AEC.  

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Another Third Period Collapse, Game Recap, Video Highlights, Martinson Comments, Rematch Preview, Winning Percentages Past & Present



You could blame Allen's 5-3 loss last night to Reading on the Saturday night, big crowd, specialty jersey curse and there is little doubt one exists. However, that would be unfair to the largest crowd of the season (5604) on Wizarding World Night who watched Allen lose their 38th game of the season. With the loss, Allen passes last year's loss total of 37 which was the most losses in team history and the scary part is the Americans still have 18 games remaining to add to their loss total.


-  Allen gave up the first goal which they have done in 63% of their games this season. Their record when they don't score first now stands at 6-27-0-1. The Americans gave up the first two goals and Reading took a 2-0 lead into the first intermission. The Royal's record on the road with a first period lead is 9-1-1-1.


- To Allen's credit they made a nice comeback early in the second period on goals by Riley Bourbonnais, his 14th of the season and Emerson Clark's first since joining the Americans.


- The same thing happened last night as on Friday night, the Americans were not competitive in the third period. Not sure if it is a lack of conditioning or lack of will but the team had no energy in the third period. They managed only four shots on goal and were outscored 3-1. Josh Atkinson scored his first goal of the season (shorthanded) with 20 seconds remaining in the game to make the final score 5-2.


- The third period totals from Friday and Saturday tell tale. The Americans were outscored 8-1 and out shot 28-12. The only thing they did better than their opponents was in penalty minutes (41-18).


- Here is the game recap issued by the Reading Royals with an apt headline, "Royals Smack Americans in Third"  https://royalshockey.com/en/news/2018/9/game-51-preview-reading-at-allen


- Here are the video highlights posted by the Americans. Some of the goals are out of sequence and repeated:




- Here are coach Martinson's post game comments:



- I had a chance to spend some time with Martinson after the game and as usual he was already looking at video and breaking down the game to help plan for the next game. He showed me the defensive breakdowns that are both physical and mental. On one play a forward with full possession of the puck passes cross ice to a player going off the ice on a change and is facing the bench. The puck gets turned over and leads to a Reading goal. In another instance a player with full possession of the puck turns the puck over in the offensive zone that leads to a breakaway. Two things were abundantly clear after spending 30 minutes with the coach after the game. First, he is sick and tired of losing and second, he will work and grind to win each and every game for the next 18 games.


REMATCH PREVIEW


- There is no magic to what Allen needs to do to get out of what is starting to look like their poor play at the beginning of the season. They have now lost three straight games and nine of their last 12. Sure they need to have better starts, they need to stay out of the penalty box which they did last night, they need to avoid costly turnovers and they need to get pucks in deep. Most importantly they need take some pride and outwork Reading. The Royals have proven they are a better team by beating Allen four times this season and all four wins have been by two or more goals. Reading is clearly a faster team than the Americans. Make this game about will over skill. Sure it will be the third game in less than 48 hours for Allen but today is a day to show everyone what hard work looks like.


- Reading goalie Andrew D'Agostini has six wins this season and four of them have come against Allen. You may remember Andrew came to Allen's training camp this year and performed well but was released in favor of Jeremy Brodeur as the backup goalie for C.J. Motte. D'Agostini has certainly gotten revenge winning four straight against the Americans. You can expect he will be in net this afternoon to try and make it five in a row against the Americans.


- There is no doubt who will start in goal for Allen as they continue to use an EBUG while Motte is in Iowa. Kyle Hayton will start and be in goal no matter what happens. After not starting a game for over a month, today will be Kyle's fifth in a row. It is a lot of work piled on the rookie. His first two games were great as he stopped 50 of 51 shots for a .980 save percentage. The last two games he has stopped 68 of 78 shots for a save percentage of .871.


- Allen has not out shot Reading in any of the four games they have played this season. The head to head stats favor Reading in goals (19-10),  shots (144-114) and power play goals (5-4).


- If you liked the officiating crew on Friday and Saturday you will like them today. It doesn't happen very often but the exact same crew is working all three games this weekend. The referee today is Andrew Bruggeman (#25). The linesmen will be Jordan Solomon (#78) and Michael Miggans (#47).


OTHER COMMENTS

- C.J. Motte has been in Iowa since being recalled two weeks ago. Motte is serving in a back up role and has not played. Iowa has a game today, Tuesday and Thursday. My reporting indicates the goalie Motte is replacing is close to returning. Would be nice to get C.J. back in Allen before the Americans play Utah three times in three days next weekend.


- The alumni game turned out to be the highlight of the day as Team Red came back from a 5-1 deficit to beat Team White 10-7. The boys did a great job of making the game fun and entertaining for themselves and the fans. I am by no means a scout but the players that looked like they are still in good shape, play plenty of hockey and still have lots of skill include Tobias Whelan, Justin Bowers, Trevor Ludwig, Mathieu Aubin and Austin Smith.


- The winners in the Mountain Division last night were Rapid City and Utah and both teams won on the road. The losers were Allen, Idaho, Utah and Tulsa. Here are the current Mountain Division standings based on winning percentage with games remaining in parentheses.

.670 - Utah (22 games remaining)
.635 - Idaho (20 games)
.604 - Tulsa (19 games)
.563 - Kansas City (24 games)
.463 - Rapid City (18 games)
.452 - Wichita (20 games)
.352 - Allen (18 games)


- It is difficult to make huge changes in winning percentage late in the season. With seven weekends remaining in the season it will be very difficult for teams to gain more than .050 in winning percentage. What the stats say if you look at the winning percentages above is Allen will not escape last place and neither Rapid City or Wichita have a chance of catching Kansas City for the final playoff spot. Here is the change in winning percentage over the last five weeks from biggest improvement to biggest loss.

+.052   Allen
+.025   Rapid City
+.007   Kansas City
-.011   Tulsa
-.018   Utah
-.027   Idaho
-.035   Wichita



DID YOU KNOW: With the two losses this weekend the Americans home record is now 6-14-1-0. It is far and away the worst home record in the ECHL. Only one other team (Greenville) has fewer than 10 home wins.  Allen's home winning percentage is a lowly .295. It is a long way from just two season ago (2016-17) when Allen's home record was 25-8-2-1 for a winning percentage of .736. 

 

 

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Allen Goes Off the Rails in the Third Period, Game Recap, Video Highlights, Martinson Comments, Allen vs Reading Preview, Alumni Weekend & Revisiting 2009-10 Season


The start of alumni weekend when fans got the opportunity to interact with players from the past ended in a disappointing 6-2 loss for the Allen Americans last night. A crowd of 3991 watched the Americans fall off the rails in the third period as the Worcester Railers scored five unanswered goals to win the first meeting ever between these teams.


- Despite giving up four power play opportunities and being out shot 19-13 in the first period the Americans came away with a 1-0 lead on a goal by Braylon Shmyr, his 14th of the season. Gary Steffes, who was signed by Allen yesterday, had the primary assist on the goal.


- Worcester tied the game 1-1 at the 15:53 mark of the second period but just 58 seconds later Dante Salituro scored his 11th goal of the season and give Allen a 2-1 lead which they took into the second intermission.


- The third period belonged to the Railers as they out shot Allen 14-8 and outscored the Americans 5-0. From the 3:45 mark of the period to the 16:56 mark Worcester scored five goals on 10 shots. The five goals tied the mark for the most goals allowed in the third period this season in the ECHL.


- Here is the game recap from Bill Ballou who I had the chance to meet last night in the press box and talk to about the Railers but also baseball. Bill has covered the Boston Red Sox for the Worcester Telegram and Gazette since 1987. I grew up in Minneapolis and as a kid watched Red Sox prospects, including Carl Yastrzemski, come through as the Minneapolis Millers were Boston's AAA farm club until 1960 when the Minnesota Twins arrived.

Bill told me he has taken one road trip with the Railers each season and that one trip is to Allen and then on to Tulsa. Here is the story Bill filed about the Worcester 6-2 win last night.  https://www.telegram.com/news/20190215/railers-five-goal-third-period-propels-worcester-past-americans-in-texas


- Here are the video highlights from the game:




STEVE MARTINSON'S POST GAME COMMENTS



"It looked to me like some of the penalties we took tonight shows we just didn't want to win, they were just dumb plays."

"Hayton held us the game the first two periods facing 27 shots and multiple power plays but it seemed like everything was going in the net in the third period."

"We had our all-star break last Saturday, Sunday and Monday and it looked like we were still on break in that third period."

"We didn't pass the puck very well tonight. So many time we had puck possession and we didn't put the puck on the tape when we made passes. When we did make plays we missed the net."

"We have a lot of guys that don't kill penalties and when we have so many penalty kills it wears guys that do kill penalties down. I would like to use more guys but they just haven't done it. We have too many guys that have been non-penalty killing, goal scoring guys."

"My commitment to you is I am not giving up and we are back to the drawing board. I thought we were getting better over the last month but what happened in that third period I did not see coming."



ALLEN VS READING PREVIEW


- Tonight the Americans take on the Reading Royals in the battle of last place teams. Reading is last in the North Division but just four points out of a playoff position. The Royal have lost four straight games. Allen has lost seven of their last 10 games and their only hope is to get out of last place in the Mountain Division. The playoffs are no longer feasible.


- Allen played in Reading twice in mid December losing both games (5-3 & 4-2). Penalties plagued the Americans as they gave up 15 power play opportunities and had just seven of their own. It has been a problem all season, it was a problem in the two games against Reading and it was a problem last night. Allen leads the league in minor penalties with 309 and it has cost them dearly. Reading has taken a league low 182 minor penalties. The Royals have a fast team and are capable of drawing stick penalties as so often happens when a defensive player gets beat. Staying out of the penalty box and avoiding stick penalties will be key for the Americans. If you look at power play percentages Allen is 16.9% at home. Reading is 17.1% on the road. The penalty kill percentages are 80.8% for Allen and 79.7%  for Reading.


- The third period was the downfall for Allen last night. Getting off to a good start is very important but so is playing well in the third period. The Americans have given up more third period goals (66) than any team in the league. Allen has scored 50 third period goals so the goal differential is -16. They are tied with Reading for the worst third period goal differential in the ECHL. Reading has scored 41 third period goals and allowed 57. Should make for an interesting third period in the game tonight.


- Kyle Hayton will be in goal tonight and hopefully he hasn't lost confidence after the five goal outburst in the third period by the Railers last night. Kyle had eight straight periods of outstanding play since returning to the lineup when C.J. Motte was recalled to Iowa. In those eight periods Hayton stopped 76 of 78 shots for a save percentage of .994. In the third period last night his save percentage was .643 (9 of 14).


- Coach Martinson doesn't have any extra players with Chouinard, Ranger and Lang the latest to be out of the lineup so look for the same group on the ice tonight as last night.



OTHER COMMENTS

- The alumni game will start today at 4:15 and it should be a lot of fun. Old and not so old, in shape, out of shape, guys that play regularly to  "where are my skates" guys. One thing for sure is it will be entertaining so come out and support this event. Doors open at 3:15 and a ticket to the game tonight gets you in for the alumni game. Make sure to wear a jersey if you have one. I will be wearing a McMillin #23 which is a throwback to his first season in Allen.


- Allen fans had plenty of opportunity to interact with the players from the past at a meet and great before the game and on the concourse between periods. Having been involved with the team from the beginning as a fan for the first three years and a blogger for the last seven I had so many thoughts as I took in the goings on. Here are a few:


- How great is it that so many players from the early years made it back for the alumni game. Graham, Bowers, Whelan, Lukin, Adams and McMillin are a big part of what established hockey in Allen and their excellence lives on today.


- The first two championships in the CHL days are well represented by Trevor Ludwig, Tyler Ludwig, McMillin, Bootland, Deitsch, Lukin, and Asuchak (who is still playing).


- The ECHL championships are represented by Asuchak, Pierro-Zabotel, Makowski, Gunn who are still playing for Allen, Gill, Gens, Tyler Ludwig, McMillin and Gary Steffes, who came to town for the alumni game and signed a contract and played against Worcester last night.


- As much fun as it was to talk to the players it was just as much fun catching up with the wives who sacrificed a lot when the guys were on the road and with Allen and "Big Red" there was always a lot of long bus trips with plenty of drama. I had a chance to talk to Whitney Graham, Lindsay Whelan, Leah Bowers, Holly Ludwig, Angie Gill and Wendy McMillin. The next generation of Allen Americans family is growing and growing and it was great to see so many of the children make the journey back to Allen with their parents to watch dad play hockey one more time.


- It dawned on me as I was watching the players that this weekend isn't about the alumni hockey game and as much as the guys enjoy interacting with the fans and getting reacquainted with friends in Allen, the time spent with old teammates reliving a time in their life with laughter, chirping and fond remembrances is what this weekend is all about.

Alumni autograph session between periods last night



- The gap between the top three teams in the Mountain Division and the bottom four teams continues to grow. Last night the top three (Utah, Idaho, Tulsa) won and the bottom four (Kansas City, Rapid City, Wichita, Allen) lost.


- Utah has a record of 8-1-1-0 over their last 10 games and has improved their winning percentage to .684. Having a winning percentage above .680 is a big indicator of a Kelly Cup champion. It is kind of a sweet spot because the top team usually doesn't win the Kelly Cup but neither do teams below .680. Here are the top five ECHL teams in winning percentage.

.755 - Cincinnati
.735 - Florida
.696 - Newfoundland
.684 - Utah
.677 - Toledo



- Here is a preview of the 11 games in the ECHL tonight: https://www.echl.com/en/news/2019/2/echl-today-feb-16


- I have four FREE premium level club tickets (second level) for the Allen game on Sunday (February 17 at 4:05 pm) against Reading. I will have a drawing for the tickets this afternoon (2:00 pm), notify the winner and leave the tickets at will call. If you are interested let me know by email (janssenfamily@msn.com). All I need is your name and whether you are interested in two or four tickets. The tickets are on the upper level in the end of the rink where the Zamboni enters the ice. Good luck!



DID YOU KNOW: Allen's 2009-10 team clearly over performed in the playoffs making it all the way to the championship final in their first year as a franchise.  They were a tight knit group with many of the guys having played together in the past and many of them were already friends before they signed in Allen. Here is how that team ranked statistically. There were 15 teams in the CHL in 2009-10.

Points - Allen finished second in their conference and fourth overall with 89 points. Odessa was #1 with 101 points.

Goals Scored - Allen was ranked #8 with 210 goals scored (3.28) per game. Colorado was #1 with 277 goals scored.

Goals Allowed - Allen was ranked #2 in goals allowed with 183 (2.86 per game). Only Bossier- Shreveport allowed fewer goals (180).

Penalty Minutes - Allen was ranked #12 in penalty minutes with 1229 which was an average of 19.2 minutes per game. Missouri led the league in penalty minutes with 1589.

Power Play - Allen was ranked #6 on the power play at 16.9%. Odessa was ranked #1 at 27.3%.

Penalty Kill - Allen was ranked #6 on the penalty kill at 83.4%. Odessa was ranked #1 at 86.2%.


The Americans had a bye in the first round of the playoffs by finishing second in their conference. Allen beat Laredo 4-3 in the second round and Odessa 4-3 in the conference final, beating the Jackalopes on the road in game seven. Allen lost to Rapid City in the finals 4-2.  


Friday, February 15, 2019

Allen vs Worcester Game Preview, Alumni Weekend Details, ECHL Scoring First Stats, Free Tickets and More



It is game day for the Allen Americans as they take on the Worcester Railers for the first time ever. Allen has a history with hockey in Worcester as the Worcester Sharks were the AHL affiliate of the Allen Americans until the franchise was moved to San Jose in 2015. A year later it was announced Worcester had been granted an ECHL expansion franchise that would begin play for the 2017-18 season.


- Both teams enter the game tonight on the outside of the playoffs looking in. Worcester has a record of 21-20-5-3 which has them tied for fifth place in the North Division, four points out of a playoff spot. Allen's record is 16-30-4-2 which places them in last place in the Mountain Division, 13 points out of a playoff spot. The Americans situation is even more dire because fourth place Kansas City has played six fewer games than Allen to go along with the 13 point lead.


- Worcester arrives in Allen having lost three straight games (two in OT) and a record of 4-3-2-1 over their last 10. Allen's record over the last 10 games is 3-3-4-0.


- When you compare season long stats you would describe Worcester as a team that has trouble scoring goals but is good in not allowing goals. They have scored the fewest goals in the ECHL (144) averaging 2.53 per game. The Railers are ranked #8 in average goals allowed per game (2.98).


- Allen has been better recently but still ranks #23 in goals scored (2.77 per game) and #24 in goals allowed (3.60 per game).


- The Americans have 20 games remaining and 17 of them are at home. It is imperative Allen capitalizes on this huge home ice advantage. In their first 52 games the Americans have a better winning percentage on the road (.379) than at home (.342). That will have to change if the Americans hope to get out of last place in the division. The good news is in their last five home games the Americans record is 3-1-1-0.


- If the game tonight comes down to special teams maybe the most important stat is Allen has given up 261 power play opportunities compared to just 163 for Worcester. Staying out of the penalty box and avoiding stick penalties will be key for the Americans. If you look at power play percentages Allen is 17.3% at home, Worcester is 12.5% on the road. The penalty kill percentages are 80.6% for Allen and 81.4% Worcester.


- Scoring first is always important when you consider the league wide stat. Teams that score first have won 75% of the points this season. Worcester and Allen are both below the league average. Allen's record when scoring first is 10-4-4-1 (.658). Worcester's record when scoring first is 15-6-1-2 (.688). The best record in the ECHL when scoring first belongs to Florida at 22-1-4-0 for a winning percentage of .889. The worst record when scoring first belongs to Indy at 12-8-1-0 (.595).


- It wouldn't be much of a surprise if the game tonight goes longer then 60 minutes because 40% of recent games for both teams have gone extra time. Neither team has fared well in overtime this season. Allen is 1-4 while Worcester is 3-5. The Americans are 3-2 in shootouts while the Railers are 2-3.


- Look for Emerson Clark to be back in the lineup after missing the last two games. Chase Lang has not practiced all week so I doubt he will play tonight. Joel Chouinard will miss all three games this weekend as he recovers from an injury. Allen fans will get a chance to see defensman Stepan Falkovsky who was recently assigned to Allen by the Minnesota Wild. It won't be hard to find Stepan (he will wear #33) on the ice as he is easy to spot with his 6'7" frame. Watching Falkovsky in practice he has a cannon of a shot from the point.


- With C.J. Motte still in Iowa and Allen using an EBUG, Kyle Hayton will be called on to start all three games this weekend. In two games last week, his first two starts since the middle of December, Kyle stopped 50 of 51 shots for a save percentage of .980.


- The referee scheduled tonight is Andrew Bruggeman (#25). The linesmen will be Jordan Solomon (#78) and Michael Miggans (#47).



OTHER COMMENTS


-  The Allen Alumni Weekend gets underway tonight with a meet and greet with season ticket holders. The roster has been somewhat fluid as the alumni game approaches. The latest I heard (yesterday) was Dave Bonk will not be attending but Austin Smith, who played briefly for Allen in 2014-15 before heading to Europe, will participate. I also heard the teams for the alumni game will be selected through some kind of draft. Finally, there will be several opportunities for all fans to interact with the players and get autographs. The gates open at 3:15 on Saturday with puck drop at 4:15. You will be able to leave the AEC and return until the normal gate opening time (6:05 pm). If you leave the arena after 6:05 you won't be able to reenter.


- If you aren't attending the game tonight against Worcester don't forget it is part of the ECHL.TV free showcase series. You can watch the game free, live on Facebook. Just go to the ECHL Facebook page and you will see the link. It shows the game will go live at 7:03 pm.


- It is crunch time around the ECHL as the season enters the final 30%. In two of the divisions (North & Central) every team has a realistic chance of making the playoffs. In the North Division Reading and Worcester are tied for fifth place but are only four points in back of fourth place Brampton. Maine is in last place but just five points from a playoff spot. In the Central Division there are only five points separating third place Kalamazoo and last place Indy.


- There are seven teams in the ECHL with winning percentages below .500. Three of them are in the South Division (Norfolk, Atlanta, Greenville) and three are in the Mountain Division (Rapid City, Wichita, Allen).


- There are 12 games in the ECHL tonight with all seven Mountain Division teams in action. Kansas City is at Utah, Rapid City at Idaho and Wichita visits Tulsa. The two best teams in the Western Conference (by winning percentage) will go head to head in an home and home series starting with Toledo visiting Cincinnati tonight. They will have a rematch in Toledo on Saturday. Here is the ECHL Today with a short preview on all 12 games. https://www.echl.com/en/news/2019/2/echl-today-feb-15


- Allen traded Olivier Archambault's ECHL rights to Orlando for Curt Gogol, Etienne Boutet and the rights to defenseman Sam Jadine. Coach Martinson then traded Jardine's rights to Toronto and in return Toronto assigned Emerson Clark to Allen. It all sounds complicated because of all of the rules between how players move between the ECHL and AHL. Here is a story about Sam Jardine that does a good job of using his case to explain how this all works. It is a good read because it explains the process by using Jardine and Allen as the example.  https://www.thetelegram.com/sports/hockey/jardines-taken-a-long-twisted-route-from-toronto-to-st-johns-and-newfoundland-growlers-284023/


- I have four FREE premium level club tickets (second level) for the Allen game on Sunday (February 17 at 4:05 pm) against Reading. I will have a drawing for the tickets tomorrow (Saturday ) afternoon, notify the winner and leave the tickets at will call. If you are interested let me know by email (janssenfamily@msn.com). All I need is your name and whether you are interested in two or four tickets. The tickets are on the upper level in the end of the rink where the Zamboni enters the ice. Good luck!

 



DID YOU KNOW: The Worcester team name "Railers" was selected to honor the rich rail history of the community. The Boston-Worcester railroad line was one of the pioneers in Massachusetts, opening in 1835.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

The History of the Allen Americans From the Perspective of Barry the Blogger



I live in what is called an active adult resort community called Heritage Ranch which is a fancy way of saying it is for those over 50 or as I like to call our gated paradise "Wrinkle Ranch." We bought the lot to build our retirement home at Heritage Ranch in 2008 but visited the community many times between 1998 when it first opened and when we finally moved in. To get to Heritage Ranch we had to drive by what is now the sprawling developments of The Village at Allen and Fairview Town Center. Back then Stacy Road was a two lane country road which was just fields full of doves. There is so much history in the last 10 years I hope one day someone will write a book about the development of the area, the creation of the Allen Event Center (AEC) and the arrival of the Allen Americans franchise. I have always heard the AEC was a late change to the development after final plans were already completed and the company that built the AEC pitched the arena to the city/developers after plans had fallen through in some city on the east coast.


With the celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Allen Americans this weekend in the form of the first ever alumni game, I thought  today would be a good day to talk about the history of the team. Almost all of this information comes from the Allen Americans and the ECHL websites so I want to thank them. I have added my take to supplement this information. Whether you are a recent Allen fan or have been a fan since the beginning I hope you enjoy this short history of the franchise.


The Allen Americans were established in 2009-2010, as an expansion team in the former Central Hockey League (CHL). The Americans have qualified for the playoffs nine seasons in a row though they are at great risk of missing the playoffs this season. In their five seasons in the CHL the Americans made three trips to the CHL Presidents' Cup Finals. In their first season, 2009-2010, Allen lost to the Rapid City Rush in the Presidents' Cup Finals in six games. The Allen Americans returned to the Presidents' Cup Finals in 2013 and 2014, winning back-to-back titles. In 2013, Allen defeated Wichita in seven games, winning by a score of 3-2 in overtime on a goal by Todd Robinson. The Americans were trailing 2-0 going into the third period of that seventh game. Jarret Lukin scored at the 7:13 mark and Trevor Hendrix tied the score with 2:19 remaining in the game before Robinson scored the most dramatic goal in team history.  Brian McMillin was named the playoff MVP. Brian finished the 2013 playoffs with 12 goals, three more than any other player, he was second in points (20), fourth in plus/minus (+8) and first in game winning goals (3) including the game winning goal in games two and four in the finals.


The Americans repeated as CHL champions in 2014, defeating the Denver Cutthroats in five games. Jamie Schaafsma was named the playoff Most Valuable Player. In the five game series against Denver, Jamie had nine points (6G, 3A).


The Americans joined the ECHL after five seasons in the Central Hockey League, which ceased
operations following the 2013-2014 season. Allen, along with six other teams; Brampton, Quad City, Tulsa, Wichita, Rapid City and Missouri became members of the ECHL in October of 2014.


Allen won back to back Kelly Cup Championships in 2015 and 2016, beating South Carolina and Wheeling respectively. In 2015 Allen showed so much resiliency coming from behind in the semifinal against the Ontario Reign after being down 3-1 in the series and trailing 2-1 going into the third period of game five in Ontario. Five third period goals by Allen saved the game and the series as the Americans went on to win in game seven. In the finals against South Carolina the Americans fell behind 2-1 by losing two of the first three game at the AEC and found themselves in a hole. The Americans went to South Carolina and again showed their resiliency winning game four in double overtime (Vincent Arseneau with the game winner) and game five in overtime (Greger Hanson with the game winner). The Stingrays won game six to force game seven at the AEC and Allen blew them out 6-1. The playoff MVP was Greger Hanson who led the team in scoring with 29 points (12G, 17A).


Allen's 2016 championship was unique because they almost didn't get past the first round. The Americans trailed Idaho 3-2 after losing game four (3-1) and five (7-1) in Idaho. The series ended up going to seven games and took overtime on a goal by Tristan King for Allen advance. After the close first round the Americans ran the table to win their fourth straight championship. In round two Allen beat Kansas City 4-2, in round three they beat Fort Wayne 4-1 and in the Kelly Cup final they beat Wheeling 4-2. Chad Costello was the playoff MVP with 36 points (7G, 29A). Chad set the ECHL all-time record for assists in the final series with 10. Chad also set the all-time record for most assists in a playoff year with 29. Both records still stand today.


The Americans have had three ownership groups in their 10-year history. Douglas Miller, the former CEO of Exco Resources, formed Top Shelf LLC, and was the team's original owner from October of 2009 through May of 2014. During that time, Miller brought on other members to his ownership group that included four former NHL players; Mike Modano, Ed Belfour, Craig Ludwig and Richard Matvichuk.


In May of 2014, Miller sold the franchise to Steven Sports Group, based in Wichita, Kansas. In February of 2017 the club was sold to Jack Gulati, who remains the current owner.


Matt Canavan served as team President from 2009 to 2016. He returned in 2017 after Jack Gulati bought the Americans from the Steven Brothers Sports Group.


The Allen Americans have had two Head Coaches in their existence. Dwight Mullins was hired to
coach the then expansion team in 2009 and remained the coach through the 2011-2012 season. In his three seasons in Allen, Mullins had a record of 128-51-17 for a winning percentage of .696. He took the team to the championship final the first year, lost in the third round in the second year and lost in the first round in the third season.


Steve Martinson was hired to replace Mullins for the 2012-2013 season. Martinson is a native of Minnetonka, Minnesota. He played professionally from 1981-1996. Martinson played 50 games in the National Hockey League, for parts of four seasons, with the Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens and Minnesota North Stars. Martinson is in his 23rd year as a head coach and has won 10 championships (four in Allen). He is just six wins away from reaching the 1000 win milestone.


The Allen Americans have had seven captains in their 10 year history; Jarret Lukin in 2009-2010, Tobias Whelan in 2010-2011, Jason Deitsch for two seasons in 2011-2012 & 2012-2013, Mike Berube in 2013-2014 and Jamie Schaafsma in 2014-2015. Chad Costello and Gary Steffes served as Co-Captains in 2015-2016 and 2016-2017. Joel Chouinard was named the captain in 2017-2018 and is currently the captain of the team.


The Allen Americans have had two players in their 10 year history that have moved up to the National Hockey League. Defenseman Jordie Benn, was on the Americans inaugural roster in 2009-2010 and currently plays for the Montreal Canadiens.  Benn has close to 450 NHL games played. Aaron Dell, who won a CHL championship with Allen in 2013, is the back up goalie for the San Jose Sharks. Aaron has played in 67 NHL games with a career GAA of 2.55 and save percentage of .913.


The Americans primary colors are red, white and at times blue.The Americans had a blue alternate jersey in 2009-2010 and 2010-2011.
 

Tommy Daniels is the teams Broadcaster and VP of Media Relations. Daniels is the team's only
remaining staff member who has been with Allen all 10 seasons.


The Americans play in the 6,200 seat Allen Event Center, located at 200 E Stacy Road in the Village at Allen. Reba McIntyre played the first event at the new building on November 6, 2009.  The Americans played the second event, the following night, on November 7, 2009 in a game against Corpus Christi.


- Because the AEC was still under construction the Americans had to start their first season on the road. The first seven games in franchise history were on the road and it was quite the three weeks. From Allen to Arizona for two games and then single games in Bossier-Shreveport, Laredo, Fort Worth, Tulsa and finally Corpus Christi. The tone was set in those first seven road games that survives today. The Americans arrived back in Allen as a team to be reckoned with. Their record after seven games was 5-1-1 and they averaged 30 penalty minutes per game.


- The Americans lost their very first home game 4-1 to Corpus Christi but it was entertaining with six fighting majors and four game misconduct penalties. Two of the goal scorers for Corpus Christi were Chad Costello who would play for Allen five years later and Ryan Garbutt who would make the jump from the CHL to the NHL (Dallas Stars) just two years later. 

 
The team's website is www.allenamericans.com and the team's offices are located inside the Allen Event Center. The team's front office phone number is (972) 912-1000.



DID YOU KNOW: My history with the Allen Americans goes back to the beginning (2009) when I had to wear a hard hat to tour the AEC to pick out my season ticket location. The first three season I was just a hockey fan who grew up in Minnesota and loved having a professional hockey team 10 minutes from my house. Life changed the fourth season when I started writing the blog and it has become a full time endeavor every since and now I am the official blogger for the Allen Americans. It has been quite a ride over the last seven seasons and I want to thank you for enjoying the ride with me whether on the Allen Americans website (allenamericans.com), Twitter (Allen Americans Blog), Facebook (Allen Americans Blog) or directly at the blog website (allenamericansblog.blogspot.com). Today happens to be a big milestone for the blog as someone overnight became 1,500,000th person to view one of the 1650 stories contained in the blog archives.      

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Practice Update, Roster Update, Do Goals For and Against Predict Success, Dave Bonk Added to Alumni Game Roster and More



After three days off it was back to practice for the Allen Americans yesterday. It was a combination of skating drills, systems drills, special teams drills and conditioning drills. The team had to practice with just one goalie (Kyle Hayton). C. J. Motte is still called up to Iowa (AHL) and the Wild don't play again until this weekend. Since Motte was not sent back after the Iowa games last weekend I assume he will be in Iowa this weekend. Motte has not played since he was recalled by Iowa.


- Joel Chouinard will also be out of the lineup this weekend with his injury but it is expected Emerson Clark will be back in the lineup. The good news is there should be 18 skaters available for the weekend which is two extra. Playing three games in three days, extra skaters are almost a necessity.


- There are so many ways to look at statistics to explain what has gone wrong this season for the Allen Americans. I was working on stats for a Twitter account I have called ECHL Stats. If you are on Twitter give it a follow (@EchlStats) as you will find some stats on teams and players you won't find elsewhere and I only post a few times per week. Anyway I posted the other day that the top four teams in the ECHL were the top four teams in goals scored and also the top four teams in goals allowed. It got me to thinking how the Americans goals scored and allowed compares to past seasons.


- To start with Allen is ranked #19 in goals scored this season with 144 and they are on pace to finish the season with 199 goals. When it comes to goals allowed Allen is ranked #26 with 187 and are on pace to allow 259 goals this season.


-  If you compare these projections to the past it is almost certain the Americans will end the season scoring the fewest goals since joining the ECHL and also allowing the most goals since joining the ECHL. It will be the first season the Americans will have a negative goal differential. Last season when Allen limped into the playoffs they still had a positive goal differential (just barely). Here are the stats for the last five seasons:

Goals Scored
199 - 2018-19 (projected)
235 - 2017-18
294 - 2016-17
222 - 2015-16
292 - 2014-15

Goals Allowed
259 - 2018-19 (projected)
232 - 2017-18
203 - 2016-17
204 - 2015-16
203 - 2014-15

Goal Differential
-60   2018-19 (projected)
+3    2017-18
+91  2016-17
+18  2015-16
+89  2014-15


- The bottom line is when you score the fewest goals in history and combine that with the allowing the most goals in history you can't be surprised with 20 games remaining in the season the Allen Americans are dead last in the ECHL in points (38) and winning percentage (.365).


- Speaking of the past I really encourage everyone to attend the alumni game on Saturday. It should be a lot of fun to see the players from the past on the ice but also have a chance to interact with them on the concourse. Doors open at 3:15 pm and the puck drop will be at 4:15 pm. Come out and show your support for the alumni game. I heard last night that Dave Bonk has been added to the list of former players that will be here on Saturday.



Dave Bonk

 

#51 Dave Bonk in the alternate blue jerseys from 2010-11

Dave Bonk played just one season in Allen (2010-11) and played in only 47 games because of two loans to the AHL (Oklahoma City Barons & Texas Stars) where he played a total of 17 games. The 2010-11 Allen team was arguably the most talented in team history. That team had three 30 goals scorers (Graham, Yellow Horn, Musitelli) and three 20 goal scorers (Bonk, Blackwater, Lukin) and remember in the CHL they only played 66 games rather than the 72 they play in the ECHL. In his 47 games Dave Bonk had 58 points (20G 38A) to go along with a team leading plus/minus (+27). His +27 is #7 all time for the Americans and he is the only player in the top ten in single season plus/minus for a season in the CHL.

Dave also tied for the team lead in points in the 2010 playoffs with 16 points (6G, 10A) in 13 games. After winning the regular season by 14 points the Americans lost in the Conference Final in the playoffs to the eventual champion (Bossier-Shreveport).

 The following season (2011-12) Dave Bonk signed to play in Japan in the Asia league and spent the next seven years playing in Japan as one of the top scorers in the league. When Bonk retired after last season his totals in the Asia League were 277 games played with 388 points (115G, 233A) for a points per game average of 1.40.

In Bonk's entire pro career which included time in Germany, Norway, Netherlands and Japan in addition to the AHL, ECHL, CHL and UHL in North America, he played in 664 games and had 796 points for a career points per game average of 1.20.



- In the only ECHL action last night Tulsa went on the road and beat Wichita 2-1 in overtime. The bottom three teams in the Mountain Division (Allen, Rapid City, Wichita) are slowly running out of time to make the playoffs. They all have three games this weekend.


- The Allen game tomorrow night against Worcester is  part of the ECHL.TV free showcase series. You can watch the game free, live on Facebook. Just go to the ECHL Facebook page and you will see the link. It shows the game will go live at 7:03 pm Friday night.  



DID YOU KNOW:  Was the 2010-11 Allen team the best offensive team ever? Check out two ways to look at the stats which suggest it was.

Here are the 20+ goal scorers in each season, a who's who of Allen Americans hockey. Total games played in 2009-10 were 64, from 2010-11 thru 2013-14 games played were 66 and from 2014-15 on games played were 72.

2009-10:  
31 Bruce Graham 
23 Nino Musitelli
23 Justin Bowers 

2010-11:  
34 Graham
34 Musitelli
33 Colton Yellow Horn
21 Jarret Lukin
20 Dave Bonk 
20 Judd Blackwater

2011-12: 
26 Graham 
24 Yellow Horn
20 Jim McKenzie

2012-13: 
24 Jamie Schaafsma
22 Darryl Bootland 
21 Scott Howes

2013-14:  
28 Jonathan Lessard 
25 Alex Lavoie 
21 Spencer Asuchak
21 Greger Hanson 
21 Schaafsma 
20 Tyler Ludwig

2014-15:   
44 Gary Steffes
41 Chad Costello
28 Hanson
22 Jack Combs

2015-16:   
24 Costello 
22 Steffes
21 Chris Crane

2016-17: 
35 Hanson 
33 Costello
27 Bryan Moore 
26 Asuchak
21 Steffes

2017-18:
21 Moore
20 Alex Guptill

2018-19:
26 Zach Pochiro (after 44 of 72 games)
 

It is fascinating to look at the Allen Americans history and compare average goals scored per game. Would you be surprised to know the most prolific goal scoring team in Allen history lost in the third round of the playoffs and the teams with the two lowest average goals per game (prior to this season) in franchise history won the championship? Here are the average goals per game for each team in Allen history with their playoff results in parentheses:

2009-10:   3.28 (lost in finals)
2010-11:   4.20 (lost in third round)
2011-12:   3.21 (lost in first round)
2012-13:   3.18 (won championship)
2013-14:   3.77 (won championship)
2014-15:   4.05 (won championship
2015-16:   3.08 (won championship)
2016-17:   4.08 (lost in second round)
2017-18:   3.26 (lost in first round)
2018-19:   2.77 (thru 52 games)



Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Allen Americans 10th Anniversary Alumni Game Roster With Player Profiles



After three days off to take their delayed All-Star break the Allen Americans will be back at practice today preparing for three games in three days this weekend. The Americans will host Worcester on Friday, and Reading on Saturday and Sunday. It is the beginning of a daunting task for Allen who can't afford to lose any games if they are to move up in the standings.


- The long awaited alumni game will take place on Saturday (4:00 pm). Many players from the past can't make the alumni game because of work and/or family commitments. Many are still playing hockey or involved in hockey so getting away in February is impossible. With that said many of the former players that will participate represent Allen Americans royalty from the past. Here is a brief synopsis of the former Allen players expected to be in attendance. I am sure this list is somewhat fluid and changes could take place but this is the latest info. In addition to the former Allen Americans, former NHL players Craig Ludwig, Bob Bassen, Brad Lukowich, Andy Wozniewski, Gerald Diduck and Steve Duchesne are also expected to participate. This game should be a lot of fun and there will be plenty of opportunity for fans to interact with the players, get an autograph or just say hell-o. You don't want to miss this and there is no cost. Your ticket for the game with Reading (7:05 pm) gets you access to the alumni game.


Gary Steffes






 Gary is the only player to have his jersey (#12) retired by the Allen Americans. If you count his brief return last season (six games, four goals) he played four seasons for Allen (2014-18) and was a member of two Kelly Cup championship teams (2015 & 2016). In 2014-15 Steffes had a career year setting the Allen single season record with 44 goals in 63 games. Gary had a shot at 50 goals but missed the last nine games of the season when he was loaned to Milwaukee (AHL). Gary led Allen in goals (13) in the 2015 playoffs. Between the regular season, his stint in the AHL and the playoffs, Gary's goal total for the season was 61. The Allen Americans were so fortunate to have a player like Gary represent the team with fans and in the community. Whether it was in a formal setting such as his talks after Faith & Family night games, interacting with young fans or chatting with folks one on one he was outstanding. A positive attitude type of guy who always saw the glass half full.



Riley Gill






Riley Gill played four seasons with Allen (2014-18) and led the Americans to two Kelly Cup championships. The future Hall of Famer was always at his best in the playoffs. He has three Kelly Cup championships (two in Allen, one in Reading) and is the ECHL's all-time leading goalie in playoff wins with 53. Gill's best season in Allen was 2016-17 when he led the ECHL in save percentage (.935) and shutouts (7). For his efforts he was selected as the ECHL Goaltender of the Year.  Riley is still recovering from an injury he suffered at the beginning of the 2017-18 season and will be one of the coaches for the alumni game.




Aaron Gens





Aaron played for Allen from 2014-2017 and was part of two Kelly Cup championships. During the 2014-15 season Gens led all ECHL defensemen in assists (48) and points (56). Aaron is #8 all-time in games played by a defenseman (155), #6 in goals (19), #4 in assists (73) #5 in points (92) and #5 in penalty minutes (273). Aaron's career was cut short from a head injury he suffered in December of 2016. He will be a behind the bench as a coach on Saturday. 



Darryl Bootland







Darryl "Booter"  Bootland is one of the most popular players ever to play in Allen. He played two seasons for the Americans (2012-14) and won championships both seasons. He went on to win a third championship with the Colorado Eagles. Bootland retired after last season, his 16th as a pro. Over his career he played in the NHL (32 games), AHL (382 games), ECHL (329 games) and CHL (156 games). Always the entertainer and as tough as nails, he had close to 300 fights over his hockey career. Bootland's trademark beard was something he started when playing in Allen. As the story goes his wife, Sarah, was pregnant and was concerned how she would look so Booter grew the beard so as he would say, he wouldn't look so good. The rest is history.   


Bruce Graham






Bruce had two stints in Allen, playing from 2009-2012 and then returning for the 2013-14 season. Bruce played 184 games (13th all-time) in Allen and is #3 all time in goals (97), #2 in assists (138) and #2 in points (235). He won a championship in 2014.


Jarret Lukin




Jarret Lukin was the first player ever signed by the Allen Americans and was the first captain of the team. He is one of just three players that spent at least five season (2009-14) with the team. Jarret is #3 all-time in games played (238), #6 in goals (74), #9 in assists and #8 in points. Lukin won one championship in Allen (2013).


  

Brian McMillin



 Brian McMillin is also one of three players that spent five seasons in Allen (2010-15). Brian is #6 all-time in games played (215), #10 in goals (53), #14 in assists (73) and #12 in points. A rare stat about Brian is in his 215 games as an Allen American he had more goals (53) than penalty minutes (45). Brian was part of three championships (2013, 2014, 2015) and was the playoff MVP in Allen's first championship in 2013.


Tyler Ludwig


Tyler, Craig & Trevor Ludwig will all be part of the Alumni game


 Tyler spent four seasons in Allen (2011-2015) and is #2 all-time in games played. Tyler is #1 all-time among defensemen in points (172), assists (121) and is tied in goals (51) with David Makowski. Tyler also is #1 among defensemen in playoffs games (61) and points (37). Tyler was part of three championships in Allen (2013. 2014, 2015).


Trevor Ludwig



Trevor spent four years in Allen (2011-15) and is #14 all-time in games played (171). It seemed like every season Trevor would sustain a significant injury that kept him out of the lineup for long periods. Among all Allen defensemen Trevor is #6 in games played, #6 in points (62), #5 in goals (20) and #8 in assists. Trevor was part of three championships in Allen (2013, 2014, 2015).


Justin Bowers



Justin Bowers spent just one season in Allen (2009-10) but what a season it was. In 49 games (he spent time in the AHL) Justin had 73 points (23G, 50A) with a plus/minus of +21. His points per game (1.49) was by far the best on the team. Bowers led Allen in a playoff run that ended with the first year Americans losing in the championship finals. Justin had 30 points (12G, 18A) in 20 playoff games which led the CHL in playoffs scoring.


Tobias Whelan



Tobias played two seasons in Allen (2009-11) and was the captain of the team. In those two seasons Tobias played in 117 games and had 86 points (35G, 51A) and had a plus/minus of +23. A great defensive player and penalty killer, in the 2011 playoffs Tobias had three shorthanded goals in 13 playoff games.


Erik Adams



Erik played three seasons in Allen (2009-12) as a player but was also a long time front office employee and served as the Americans assistant coach in 2014-15 when they won their first Kelly Cup championship. In his Allen playing career Erik's totals were 107 games played, 53 points (10G, 33A) and a plus/minus of +26.


Jason Deitsch





Jason played two seasons in Allen (2011-13) and served as captain of the team both seasons. He arrived in Allen after playing for their crosstown rival, Texas Brahmas. Jason is #20 all time in games played (132) and #16 in points (100) which is amazing giving he only played two seasons with the Americans. The reason is because he never missed a game in his Allen career playing in 132 of 132 games. Jason was part of the 2013 championship team. He is now serving as the assistant coach for the Allen Americans.


Mike Salekin



 Mike was a tough nosed defenseman who played just one season in Allen (2009-10). He led the league (CHL) during the 2010 playoffs with 82 penalty minutes.



Mathieu Aubin




Aubin spent part of one season (2017-18) with Allen after a long and successful ECHL career which included two Kelly Cup championship in Cincinnati (2008 & 2010). Since 2006-07 when Mathieu entered the ECHL he is ranked #4 in games played (592), goals (192) and points (487).

David McKee




David played five games in goal for the Americans in the 2009-10 season. After attending Cornell University David had a six year pro career playing in the CHL, ECHL, AHL and even had a stint as a backup goalie for the Anaheim Ducks in 2006-07. While he didn't get in a game he is in the NHL data base. McKee played one year of junior hockey for the Texas Tornado in 2002-03 where Tyler and Trevor Ludwig were his teammates.


Josh Trimberger




Josh served as the emergency backup goalie (EBUG) many times for Allen. So when it was natural to think of Josh when the team was having trouble finding goalies for the alumni game. Josh did play in one game with the Americans. On February 6, 2015 in Brampton with the Americans leading 5-1 and 2:03 remaining in the game, Riley Gill's back mysteriously tightened up and Josh had to finish the game. It was a nice touch by the Americans and Trimberger is forever in the record book. His career totals show one game played, 2:03 minutes and no saves. Looks like he will be the starter in the alumni game.



DID YOU KNOW: Well over 300 players have played for the Allen Americans in the past 10 years but just 30 have played in more than 100 games.