Saskatoon Blades @ Swift Current Broncos
Tonight’s game is the fifth of eight regular season meetings this season between the Saskatoon Blades (32-9-0-2) and the Swift Current Broncos (22-23-0-1). The Blades have won 3 out of the first 4 meetings, but it was the Broncos who were victorious in the most recent game between these two clubs by a score of 4-2 back January 2nd. This game is the 2nd of 5 times that the Blades and Broncos will meet in January. These same two clubs meet again tomorrow night in Saskatoon for the back end of this weekend home and home series.
Josh Nicholls leads the Blades scoring attack against the Broncos, having collected 7 points (4G 3A) in the 4 games vs. Swift Current this season. Following closely behind Nicholls are defensive partners Duncan Siemens (1G 5A = 6pts) and Stefan Elliott (2G 3A = 5pts) who have combined for 11 points and a +11 rating vs. the Broncos this season. For Swift Current, Justin Dowling has picked up 4 points (1G 3A) in the 4 games vs. the Blades this season.
Blades Last Game
It was the Matt Hewitt Show Wednesday as Regina’s rookie goaltender stopped 59 of 62 shots through overtime and the Pats out-lasted the Saskatoon Blades 4-3 in a shootout. The shot tally was 62-33 in favour of the Bridge City Bunch, who never led in the game, but managed a point in the standings when Marek Viedensky scored a power play goal with 5:55 remaining in the third period. The Blades had a great chance to win in overtime when Regina forward Shayne Neigum drilled Saskatoon defenceman Teigan Zahn into the boards from behind...but they couldn't score on the 4-on-3 power play over the final 2:46 of the extra period. Lukas Sutter and Stefan Elliott had the other goals for the 32-9-2 Blades who got shootout goals from Jake Trask and Viedensky...but Pats' captain Garrett Mitchell ended the game by beating Adam Morrison in the fourth round.
- On Wednesday, the Canadian Hockey League announced the BMO CHL MasterCard Top 10 Rankings for week 16 of the 2010-11 season. The Saskatoon Blades have been ranked 3rd this week, up one spot from lat week’s rankings. The weekly rankings of the Canadian Hockey League’s Top 10 teams are selected by a panel of National Hockey League scouts.
- The Blades have recalled Tanner Sohn for tonight’s game vs. Swift Current. Sohn was re-acquired by the Blades on Monday’s WHL trade deadline from the Vancouver Giants.
- On Monday the WHL announced that Stefan Elliott was named the WHL Player of the Week for the week ending January 9th. Elliott received the honours after picking up 6 points, scoring two goals and four assists to go with a +7 rating, in two games over the past week, helping the Blades to a 2-0-0-0 record in that span. Stefan Elliott is the 2nd Blade to receive the Player of the Week this season as Darian Dziurzynski also received the honour back in October.
By The Numbers
- Stefan Elliott continues to top the league rankings in numerous categories this season. Elliott is currently ranked 1st overall in the WHL in: Points by a defenseman with 48, Goals by a defenseman with 19, Plus/Minus with a +33 mark, and GWG with 9. Elliott also enters tonight’s game riding a 7 game point streak which has seen him collect 5 goals and 9 assists over that time.
- The Saskatoon Blades have outshot their opponents in 29 of 43 games played this year and have posted a record of 24-3-0-2 when they do so. In their last 3 games played, the Blades have unloaded 152 shots on opposing netminders, including a 62 shot barrage against Regina on Wednesday.
- Marek Viedensky is on a modest 4 game point streak. During that time, the 20 year old San Jose Sharks prospect, has picked up 3 goals and 3 assists.
- The Blades enter tonight’s game with 2nd best road winning percentage in the league at 63.0%. The Blades 14-8-0-1 record away from the CUC is good for 29 points in the standings which is tied for the league lead with Kootenay.