Game Day Preview: Thunderbirds @ AmericansDec 10, 2013 - 04:25 PST
Written By: Tole, Ben
Tuesday December 10, 2013
Seattle Thunderbirds (18-9-1-3, 40 pts.) At Tri-City Americans (17-13-1-2, 37 pts.)
Toyota Center, Kennewick, WA; 7:05 p.m.
Listen: NewsTalk 870; 6:45 p.m.
Watch: WHL Live
Seattle: 12/07/13 vs. Spokane (4-2, Win)
Tri-City: 12/07/13 vs. Prince George (2-5, Loss)
2013/14 Point Leaders
Seattle: Branden Troock 12G-26-38PT, Shea Theodore 13G-19A-32PT , Mathew Barzal 5G-24-29PT
Tri-City: Brian Williams 20G-10A-30 PT, Connor Rankin 11G-18A-29PT, Phil Tot 8G-11A-19PT
The Seattle Thunderbirds travel to Kennewick for the fifth of ten meetings against the Tri-City Americans during the 2013-14 season. So far during the season series, each side has collected two wins and a shootout loss earning five out of a possible eight points. Historically Tri-City comes in with a 108-104-7-2 record against Seattle all-time with a 67-44-3-1 record at home.
Players to Watch
Branden Troock – Troock enters Tuesday’s game leading Seattle with 13 goals on the season. In four head-to-head meetings this season, Tri-City has kept the Edmonton native quiet, scoring a goal and two assists against in four games. Troock is riding a six-game point streak, scoring goals in five of those six games.
Shea Theodore - Theodore comes into tonight’s game riding a four-game point streak where he has recorded multiple points in each one of those four games. The defenseman leads the Thunderbirds with 38 points (12G-26A) and has registered a goal and an assist against the Americans this season.
Mathew Barzal- Barzal is 30 games into his WHL career, registering 29 points (5G-24A) so far this season. The rookie has cooled down after a hot start where he scored 20 points in his first 15 games, registering just nine points in his last 15 games.
Brian Williams – Williams is looking to get out of the current slump he finds himself in, having been held pointless in five straight games. The California native has performed well against the Thunderbirds this season, scoring five goals and an assist in four games.
Phil Tot – Tot comes into tonight’s game third on the team with 20 points (9G-11A) and has been a consistent performer for the Americans primarily on the second line. The 20-year-old will look to make some noise against Seattle tonight after being held to just one assist in the first four matchups.
Brandon Carlo - With the current injury bug that has bit the Americans defensive unit this season, Carlo is having to play a big role for Tri-City early in his WHL career. The Colorado Springs native scored his first career goal this past Saturday against Prince George and has registered three points 32 games into his rookie season.
The Boys Are Back In Town: After the weekend series in Prince George, the Americans return home to the friendly confines of the Toyota Center for two games to wrap up the first half of its home schedule. Tri-City is 11-5-0-0 at home this season with only three losses since the beginning of October.
Against the U.S. Division: The Americans are 6-7-1-1 against the U.S. Division this season needing a victory to get back to the .500 mark in division play for the first time this season. Tri-City currently ranks fifth in the division with 37 points but are just three points shy of the Thunderbirds who rank third in the division and fourth in the Western Conference.
Tuesday Night Success: Tonight marks the seventh time during the 2013-14 season that the Americans have played on Tuesday night and thus far it has proven to be Tri-City’s luck night. The Ams are 6-0-0-0 on Tuesday night, outscoring its opponent 21-7.
Offense vs. Defense: The Americans currently hold the Western Conference’s third best defense holding its opponents to 2.72 goals per game this season. It will face a tough test tonight when it takes on the Thunderbirds second ranked offense which is averaging 3.77 goals a night. In its four previous meetings, Tri-City has held Seattle more than a goal below its season average scoring just 2.75 goals per game against the Americans.
Offensively Against the Thunderbirds: In four meetings against the Seattle Thunderbirds this season the Americans are averaging three goals a night against its division rival, higher than its season average of 2.72. Tri-City has also been successful on the man advantage against the Thunderbirds, scoring four goals on the power play.
Tri-City: vs. Prince George 12/13/13
Seattle: vs. Portland 12/13/13