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Why tonight means a lot....

Frequently in sports you see teams refusing to call games "must win" during the beginning or middle parts of the season. As they approach the end of the season they suddenly start having bigger and bigger games until eventually someone calls a game a "must win".

I hate calling anything a "must win" because the only true "must win" game is when you are facing elimination in the playoffs.... but tonight is a game Seattle has to find a way to win and it would be a bonus if they could take care of it in regulation.

Let's put it another way... Seattle cannot afford to lose tonight.

I few interesting things have already happened since I went through and projected the season ending point totals for Seattle and the teams directly in front of them.

Kelowna has struggled a little bit. I didn't even include Kelowna in my projections because my feeling was that with their additions they would play well and would finish ahead of Spokane. Kelowna lost both games in Prince George and lost in their showdown against Vancouver. Perhaps the Rockets should have been the team I considered for the 4th spot... because....

Spokane has now reeled off 6 straight wins and looks poised to get the #3 spot and with the number of games they have left with Tri-City they may very well catch the Americans.

Since my projections... Spokane has won 4 straight and now must finish with 12.5 wins to 14.5 losses just for Seattle to finish within 7 points (if memory serves me) of the Chiefs.

Bottom line... Spokane probably already isn't going 12.5 to 14.5 and if the Tbirds lose tonight I would bet my life they aren't going 11.5-14.5 the rest of the way and Seattle has no chance to catch them. Seattle may not catch Spokane either way, but lose tonight and you can forget about it.


Anonymous said...

I really wouldn't put it a must win, It is always nice. To be honest the Giants, Ams, Chiefs, and Rockets are the only teams in the West that I feel are deep enough to contend this year. I don't see Seattle, Kamloops, Everett, or (fill in the 4 and out to Vancouver) really winning a 7 game series. They could give other teams trouble, but I'd think minor. Unless Oscar Moller lands in the T-birds lap. It's hard for me to put them above any of those top 4 teams.

Tyler you do a great job of getting T-bird info out when not much is being offered. But I must comment to everyone who posts about the attendence. First of all it's a new market give it time, season ticket sales are going up. Second of all why are Tips and Hawks fans posting negative stuff? We still draw more than Portland, and the Tips are feeling the economic crunch to. I feel the 3 cities should be doing more to help each other. I love going to Everett and Portland when they fill the building, I wish they always would. It's great for hockey in a northwest region that can watch a boring Mariner snoozefest for 5 hours. But can't spend 22 dollars to watch a more interactive and entertaining sport because it's not an nhl team. I go to Everett and Portland and for the most part I enjoy talking to other fans. Yeah you get the idiots that throw stuff on the ice, bring cowbells instead of cheering, and people that bash other teams anonymously online. But ya know without those idiots it wouldn't be a rivalry now would it. Through my rambling my point is that fans of the 5 U.S. Division teams should want the other's to succeed, it makes for a better product on the ice. And you know it drives the CHL crazy when a U.S. based team wins the Memorial Cup.

Everyone can bash each other and analize every aspect of fan bases and make bogus assumptions of each other but I'm going to go enjoy watching the Memorial Cup Champions tonight, then enjoy an awesome rivalry game tomorrow night wether there is 1,000 or 6,000 people there to watch.

Keep up the good work Tyler, IMO keep the blog all about on ice product.

Thunnex said...

Josh... thanks for the kind words. I think you're making some great points.

I also think that the attendance is a topic about the team, so its ok to cover it. Quite frankly I'm completely over the topic... but I think no different than a Mariners beat writer commenting about the crowds at Safeco, I'm just making a comment about a topic that is certainly out there right now.

Though, there is a small part of me that wishes I hadn't brought it up at all... haha.

Anonymous said...

"Everyone can bash each other and analyzed every aspect of fan bases and make bogus assumptions of each other but I'm going to go enjoy watching the Memorial Cup Champions tonight, then enjoy an awesome rivalry game tomorrow night wether there is 1,000 or 6,000 people there to watch." I cant agree more Josh and it seems like alot of the anonymous posts seem to be Everett fans who are always looking for a way to bitch about the Birds haha. The fans will come in time and even though I live 3mins from Key arena there was no way i was giving up my season tickets for the birds and am gladly making the 25min+ drive to Kent to see games in a fun and intimate building! Oh and Great job Tyler I really enjoy reading your blog each day! and to all the negative people quit your Bitch'en!!! Hahaha Go Birds

Anonymous said...

NO Tip or Hawks fans are posting negative comments. Facts are Facts! As a proud Winterhawk fan, I would be a little worried if the Hawks moved into a new arena, and was only getting a little over 2000after a handful of games. The Hawks get more than 2000 NOW in a 40 year barn now.

Brian in Sherwood

Anonymous said...

Well Brian, I think what I'm getting at is I can look back on this blog and see people like you looking for every reason to come to a T-birds blog to bash the T-birds. It's quite sad. I could go to Andy Kemper's blog and start typing up how stupid Portland fans are to cheer for Taylor Jordan a guy who quit your team, bad mouthed your city, then decided to come back. I could go there and bad mouth everything about that team. I could even bad mouth your pedophile gay mayor. But the truth is I have nothing against the Portland Winter Hawks. It's simply a hockey rival. I'm sure Brian you are coming tonight you will see the work that still needs to be done in this arena to draw larger crowds it's in a quite hidden area (much like Chilliwack, if you have been) but like you have heard, only the weekly Kent Reporter really gives any hype.... Once they start tapping markets in Renton, Auburn, and Federal Way it will be alright.... I think they rushed into this, but ya know, the atmosphere is 3 times as good.........I think we are all better off that the Key Arena is gone.

Anonymous said...

There are drive-bys on every site in the WHL and Brian from Sherwood is well known throughout the US division, if not the league.(If you read the Portland sites occasionally you'll see he is not too kind to the Hawks either. Often his posts are derogatory and incoherant.) There are also homers on every site which brings on the insults and starts the arguments which can be amusing. Isn't that one of the goals of these things? To get people talking and generate interest?

Regarding the point of the new arena in Kent; I have been to a couple of games there and do not like the setup. The concourse being built at ice level makes it impossible to walk all the way around the facility because the lockerrooms interfere. I don't like it. But, I understand the financial reasons for it and the rest of the building is great. It is so far superior to the Key it is not worth talking about any more.

As to the crowds being somewhat small I'm sure it will be better in time. The locals will become more aware of the team and the economy will recover eventually. Those of us in Kennewick would be very grateful for new facilities, but it isn't in the cards in the near future. Not that the Toyota Center is a bad place to watch a game, just old. Portland's Rose Garden is not a great place to watch a game though. Without fans the building is dead. Admit it Brian, the Rose Garden is not much better than the Key, especially with small crowds. The MC is a joke. It is both bad and old. I know the Hawks have turned the corner and will become competetive in the very near future, welcome back to the WHL. But until you put more fans in the seats, the RG is like playing in an airplane hanger.

Wow, speaking of derogatory and incoherant, I need to conclude this now. Enjoy the Sho everyone.


Anonymous said...

Hello all:

Where to start? First if of all, Andy Kemper will not allow negative comments on his blog. He is positive blog only. Only positive remarks are posted about the team and especially about the players. But thanks for reading his blog, I wish more would comment on the blog, but thats a fight for another day. The blog is boring at times with the lack of comments, but I have learned to live with it. Second, I understand about the attendence issue, the Winterhawks are down 50% from just 3 years ago. Thats will happen when your team is not very good, and has NO prospects or NHL draft picks. However, I do enjoy the Rose Garden over the MC for hockey. The Hawks only play 6 games a year at the Rose Garden and those are for "special" promotions games. Your right if the crowd is under 5K it sucks. The MC is not much better when the "announced" crowd is 3500 but its more like 1800. The MC is great when there is 10K hockey fans there, just like very other arena in the league.

I am a hockey fan, and I call them the way I see them. I make harsh statements towards the Winterhawks just as much as i do against the other WHL teams.

Lastly, I will be there tonight. I am looking forward to it. However, I was a little suprised my Andrew Jackson was NOT enough to buy ONE ticket though.

Nice blog. GREAT interaction with comments. Thats what a blog is supposed to be. --- Interaction!

Should be a great game. The Hawks have been rested for a few days, but will be without Brad Ross for tonights game.

Brian in Sherwood

P.S. I live outside of Portland. I am not touching the mayor issue at all.

Anonymous said...

keep it up Brian .... you give them all you got. As a fan of neither of the 3 teams, i agree with Brian's comments for times than not.


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