Happy St. Patty’s Day to all you in Aeros’ Land – especially my fellow Irishmen (I’m only 50% despite my last name), beer lovers and those that are just looking for an excuse to hit up happy hour!
Spring is in the air (has been for a few weeks here in Texas) and the push for the postseason is in full swing. To properly keep up-to-date on the Aeros’ postseason push, you need to follow the AHL out-of-town scores. Easiest way to do that is to follow me on Twitter @aero_joe. I’ve been using the hashtag #scoreboardwatching so keep checking that if you’re on Twitter for nightly updates on the various West Division foes that are in playoff contention.
With 10 games to go in the Aeros’ regular season, here’s a quick look at the West Division playoff picture based on the following scenario (big props to Aeros’ pseudo-staffer Dave Maxwell for hooking this up):
If the Aeros go 6-4 in their final 10 games, they will finish with 96 points. Thus, here are the necessary records of their various opponents to reach 97 points and best the Aeros in the standings at the conclusion of the regular season. This is all based on the current AHL standings as of today, 3/17:
Keep in mind that a bunch of teams have games in hand on the Aeros, so most teams have more than 10 games left in their respective schedules. Oh and Rock-Vegas isn’t included because in my opinion the Ice Hogs aren’t going to be dancing this year, whether they are still mathematically eligible or not.
AEROS 6-4 over final 10 games = 96 points
Milwaukee: 6-7 (97 pts.)
Peoria: 8-3 (97 pts.)
Texas: 8-3-1 (97 pts.)
Chicago: 9-2 (97 pts.)
San Antonio: 9-4-1 (97 pts.)
Oklahoma City: 10-2 (97 pts.)
Let’s digest this for a moment…Can Chicago and OKC really put up those records over the balance? I don’t think so, especially since it’s almost exclusively West Division vs. West Division for each team from here on out. San Antonio can go 9-4-1 for sure but they have just four wins in their last 10 games. Basically, the Aeros “control on their own destiny” – if they go an extremely manageable 6-4 they will most likely get in…anything less than that becomes dicey and would classify as a minor choke job if they fail to qualify.
For instance, if the Aeros finish just 4-6 it means that a team like Oklahoma City can post a more realistic 8-4 mark and still be able to pass the Aeros, while someone like the Texas Stars can go 6-5-1 to surpass them. Again, the onus is on the Aeros to take care of business.
Speaking of the Stars, they are up in Winnipeg this weekend for two games, playing a Moose team that has now lost 3 in a row. This is a big test for the Stars – I’d be surprised if they earn more than two points…but this is a chance for them to prove they are ready to defend their Western Conference crown from a year ago.
Before I head out to lunch (no, not a liquid lunch) check out these two AHL articles I found to be solid reads:
Enjoy your respective St. Patty’s celebrations and be safe….CALL A CAB!
– Aero Joe