Nice to nip that two game winless streak in the bud while continuing to play well at home. The Thunderbirds are now 4-0-0-1 on home ice, picking up nine of a possible 10 points so far at the ShoWare Center!
The T-birds could easily have earned two regulation wins this weekend and a full four points. A late third period collapse Friday cost them a point though as they lost in a shootout to Prince George, after having a late two goal lead erased. Still, gaining three of four points on the weekend is a success and the T-birds secured that with Saturday night's 6-3 win over the Swift Current Broncos.
You can lament the one that got away but Seattle is still currently on pace for a 104 point season and I'm an optimist that believes they will only get better as the season progresses. A season ago 104 points would have been the third best record in the Western Conference and good enough for home ice in the first round of the playoffs. Seattle may not stay on that pace but they should stay squarely in the thick of the battle for a top seed come March.
It's always good to see a team spread the scoring around and Saturday the Thunderbirds got goals from six different players. Of the ten goals scored in this weekend's two games, only two players, Riley Sheen and Roberts Lipsbergs with two each, had more then one. I'm not sure what the longest point streak for a T-birds player was last season; maybe four or five consecutive games with a point. Matt Barzal currently has a streak of eight straight games with at least a point. I know goal scorers get all the love but Barzal is picking up assists like a shovel picks up grains of sand on the beach.
A year ago after thirteen games Seattle was allowing 3.46 goals against per game. This season, after 13 games, the T-birds are allowing 3.46 goals against per game. One issue lately with the goals against is giving up too many goals after building a lead, as they did this weekend in both games. I don't know if that means they are too comfortable with a third period lead but they'll want to play hard to the final horn to cut down on that goals against average.
Now, a big difference as to why they are 9-3-0-1 after 13 games this season as opposed to being 7-5-1-0 after 13 games a year ago is the increase in offensive production. Last year at this tine they were averaging 3.2 goals per game. At the same moment this season, they are almost a goal per game better at 4.07. What a simple formula, score more then you give up and you'll win more then you lose.