The Portland Winter Hawks had enough opportunities to finish the Prince George Cougars, but numerous chances went by the wayside, especially in the final 30 minutes of the contest.
Give Kevin Armstrong credit, he made the saves he had to, but he also was very lucky as Portland hit a few posts and missed at least four open nets. It was an omen when Taylor Peters had a breakaway in the games first minute, but fanned on the shot and it rolled harmlessly on net.
Ian Curtis wasn’t as lucky in his first start against his former team. The first goal was banked in off a Hawk in front by Cameron Cepek and then the eventual game-winner was never touched by the Cougars, as Colin Reddin won a face-off clean, but it went right to the crease with some zip on it and it bounced off the skate of Travis Ehrhardt and in. I’ve seen that once before…in the playoffs against Everett at the Comcast Arena…when it bounced off Alex Aldred and past Blake Grenier.
The Hawks played their best hockey after being down 3-0, but I’m hoping to see that kind of desperation from the drop of the puck tonight.
I believe that Kurtis Mucha will get the start tonight for the Hawks.
In the CN Centre, the two locker rooms are fairly close together, and in years past they have been separated by curtains and a metal barrier that allowed for access between the two rooms.
Last night, after the game, the barrier was locked with chains and padlocks, and for good measure, they also had plastic slip-ties around the opening as well. Were the Cougars worried about a post-game dust-up between the two teams?
To me, it screamed fire-code violation, taking away the Hawks closest exit in case of an emergency. To exit the building, the Hawks had to walk 3/4 of the way around the building to get the bus loading area.
I’m not sure if this is SOP now in PG, but it seemed way out of place.
I know that a lot of fans are throwing in the towel on the playoffs for the Hawks last night. For me, until the Hawks are officially eliminated for contention, there will still be hope for a late season really for a post-season appearance by Portland.