Bouncing Back: The Idaho Steelheads will look to get back in the win column with three games against the Utah Grizzlies this week. The Steelheads dropped all three games in Colorado last week, despite multi-goal comeback efforts in each contest. The Steelheads lost three straight in regulation for the first time this season. The Steelheads will open the series on Wednesday night at Maverik Center, where they are 2-2-1 this season, hoping to protect a one-point lead in the division for second place.
Back with Brass: Brady Brassart is back in a Steelheads uniform after being released from his professional tryout with AHL Utica last week, and he made an impact over the weekend in Colorado. Brassart registered a goal and an assist in two games against the Eagles, along with 17 minutes in penalties. Brassart still ranks seventh on the team with 25 points despite missing 20 games during his tryout in Utica.
On the Plus Side: Steelheads defenseman Eric Sweetman has been among Idaho’s most productive blue-liners in recent weeks. Beyond his current three-game points streak, Sweetman has two goals and eleven points in his last eleven games, as well as a plus-14 rating. Sweetman has only played one game with a minus rating since December 20th. Charlie Dodero has alos been racking up the pluses, earning a plus-9 rating over his last ten outings.
White Knight: AJ White is enjoying his best offensive month as a Steelhead in January. Since January 12th, White has three goals and seven points in seven games. White’s six goals already exceed his total from last season with the Atlanta Gladiators, and his 18 points are two shy of last year’s total.
Tightening Race: With their three wins over the Steelheads last week, the Colorado Eagles have a comfortable 14 point lead atop the Mountain Division. The rest of the division’s playoff picture is tightening, however. The Steelheads lead the Wichita Thunder for second place by just one point, with the Thunder holding two games in hand. The Allen Americans sit in fourth and just snapped a six-game losing streak, while the Tulsa Oilers are three points behind them in fifth. As of Monday afternoon, eight points separate second place from fifth.