Houston Aeros 1994-2013: Thank you for all the great memories and two decades of great hockey and entertainment.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Aeros sweep two-game set at Grand Rapids. Zucker heads to All-star game, Aeros off until Friday

The Aeros became the first team this season to sweep a two-game set at Grand Rapids with a 5-2 win over the Griffins Saturday night at Van Andel Arena. Other than a soft goal to open the scoring in the first period, Darcy Kuemper was again solid in net, allowing the offense to score at least five goals for the first time since Dec. 11. That was when the Aeros hosted the San Antonio Rampage for the kiddie game at Toyota Center.

Defenseman, No. 2, Paul Mara - Grand Rapids Griffins photo
All phases are the game are clicking right now, and that is what this team can do when healthy. The penalty kill was nearly perfect (one 6-on-4 goal allowed), and the Griffins never looked comfortable setting up their offense. A team like Grand Rapids - currently the No. 2 team in the West - needs time and space, and the Aeros gave them neither.

Marco Scandella was recalled to Minnesota after two solid games following his return from a groin injury. Matt Dumba was returned to his junior team, so that is where the spot on their roster opened up. Jared Spurgeon is still nursing a lower body injury after blocking a shot in the Wild's second game of the season.

Jason Zucker is off to the All-Star game in Providence, and the rest of the team will get a lot of time at home before opening up a three-game homestand next Friday against the red-hot Texas Stars. The Aeros have lost three straight against the Stars, who split a home and home series against the San Antonio Rampage.

After the quick homestand, the Aeros will hit the road for 12 of their next 13 on the road. Go see the team while you can. They are going to be road warriors.

One quick thought. I like the direction of the team right now, and like many of you, I certainly hope they have better luck with injuries. They had a six-game winless streak before winning three in a row, but even with all the lockout uncertainty and a boatload of injuries, the Aeros are 7-5-3-0 since Christmas.

They can be a top four team if they continue to play well on the road and both teams stay away from their trainers.

Have a great All-star week!



9 comments:

Forecheck said...

Wait - we are talking Houston Aeros here, right? The same guys who couldn't punch their way out of a paper bag offensively? The team with the Keystone Cops defense?

And the Grand Rapids Griffins of the AHL, they of 21 goals in the previous three games, and not the Kalamazoo Wings?

Or maybe the Wild's plane landed in Grand Rapids by mistake?

This means things may not always turn out the way they appear before hand - something to keep in mind with regards to larger concerns.


Anonymous said...

GAME photos show the Aeros in their Road jerseys on Friday and their Home jerseys on Saturday.....just curious about the 24-hour change???

Anonymous said...

The Griffins wore special solid red jerseys for a fundraiser which, I would imagine, prompted the change.

Anonymous said...

JUST WHEN SOME SEMBLANCE OF CONTINUITY IS ESTABLISHED CHANGE MIGHT BE IMMINENT.
ZUCKER AND/OR COYLE MIGHT BE CALLED UP SHORTLY UNLESS LINES OTHER THAN THE TOP ONE CAN SHOW THEY CAN PUT IT IN THE NET.

Forecheck said...

OK BUT I''M NOT DEAF YET NO REASON TO SHOUT YOU KNOW.

Anonymous said...

not shouting.
when I send in lower case it seems to be barely readable

Anonymous said...

According to the methodology used on the Texas Stars blog site, when all is said and done the Stars will be the number one seed in the West.
The Aeros will be on the outside looking in by 1 point.

Andrew J. Ferraro said...

Thanks for pointing that out. I will have a link to that during the next installment of the power rankings.

I love what Hundred Degree Hockey does with that spreadsheet. It's an amazing look at where teams stand at that exact moment and the probability of what it would take to get in the postseason.

It gives fans an idea of how well their team will likely have to play to get in.

As you can see, just about anyone 5-13 has a realistic chance of getting in.

As far as our local club is concerned, I am really worried about all the road games following by all the home games.

In the West, just about every single team is well above average at home and average to below average at home.

It will be fun to watch, as you can well imagine.

Anonymous said...

From my humble vantage point, the key to the Aeros fortune will be two factors, 1 - the potential callups and 2 - the dreaded injury bug.
The Aeros have proven they can win on the road provided they have continuity with the personnel.