What a difference a year makes. These teams also met last season on Game 58, although that one was at the Dog Pound. For those that need a refresher or didn't follow the team last season, the Bulldogs picked up a 3-0 win and then raced into the dressing room to listen to the radio to hear the out of town scoreboard to find out that the Capitals lost in regulation to the Grizzlies. The combination of both results put the Dogs into the dance by a single point over Cowichan, who they had trailed since Game 1 of the season in September.
This year the stakes are much different, but I hope the Dogs play just as hard because I think playing what was essentially playoff-style hockey for the last couple months down the stretch last year really helped them when the post season started for real a couple days later. The Dogs were used to playing desperation hockey, accustomed to managing the ups and downs and playing in the face of big time pressure. Having said that I also think that as that series wore on into Games 5, 6 and 7 - into double OT in the deciding game in fact, that it worked against the Dogs as they were simply out of gas, having to play so hard for so long to just get into the final playoff spot.
These teams of course met here last night in Powell River, as the Kings snapped a four game losing streak while pushing the Dogs to a season-high fifth straight loss with an 8-2 win. A Kings win over the Dogs, and a Grizzlies win over the Clippers has settled the standings and first round Playoff match-ups. The Dogs will visit the Clippers Tuesday and Wednesday for Games 1 and 2 of the best of seven affair, and will host the Clippers Friday and Saturday for games 3 and 4. The Grizzlies have home ice as they will face the Kings.
Pacific Chevrolet Bulldogs Hockey on 93.3 The Peak FM
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Listening Live on your computer: www.933thepeak.com
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Watching Live on your computer/SmartPhone www.fasthockey.com
Tonight's 2nd Intermission guest is a feature from the BCHL This Week Radio program. You can catch the show on TSN 1410am Saturday mornings at 9:30. It's a segment with former Bulldog Mark MacMillan, who is concluding his Senior season at the University of North Dakota.
I caught up with Mark way back earlier in the season for a 1-on-1 interview - it's nice to hear from him again, and it's great to hear him talk fondly about his time here with host Jeff Patterson.