Well, surely the Alaska Aces are itching to get back on the rink after their leisurely three days without a single game.
If that doesn't sound like much of a hockey hiatus, consider that the Aces' 3-2 win over visiting Ontario last Saturday night marked the club's 11th game in 16 days. Also, two of those "off" days in that span were travel days, one to California and one returning home.
The three days without games marked the Aces' longest stretch without a match since the start of the month.
Heading into Wednesday night's game at Idaho to open a three-game road trip, the Aces hold a slim lead in the ECHL's overall standings in winning percentage. That's important because the Brabham Cup as regular-season champion will be determined by winning percentage instead of the traditional points system. That change came about when the San Francisco Bulls folded in late January and the league's revamped schedule had some teams playing fewer than the usual 72 games -- the Aces, for instance, play 71.
In any event, the Aces are seeking their fourth consecutive Brabham Cup, which is notable because no other franchise in the league's 25 seasons has won consecutive Brabhams.
Still, the Aces have a tough road ahead -- literally.
Thirteen of the club's remaining 19 games are in hostile rinks.
And the schedule really gets brutal at season's end -- the Aces play their last 10 games on the road.
Find Doyle Woody's blog at adn.com/hockeyblog or call him at 257-4335.
Wednesday, 5:10 p.m. AST
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By DOYLE WOODY