But any way you slice (pun intended) this up, this is a HUGE game for both teams. The Aeros are already five points ahead with 10 games to play, so the pressure is really on the Pigs.
If the Aeros are to win tonight, they will need to have a lead after the first or second period.
When trailing after one or two periods, Rockford's record is 0-38-0-5. By contrast, the Aeros are 20-22-0-9. To put that into perspective, the Aeros have 49 points when they trail at either of the two intermissions. When Rockford is down, they have five points.
If the IceHogs want to win tonight, they better figure out how to get a three-goal lead. In the team's last meeting, the Aeros trailed 2-0 and 3-1 before storming back for a 5-4 win. That was maybe the most incredible home game of the year. Special teams aren't doing the Hogs any favors either. Their PP on the road is just a tick over 10 percent and their away-from-home-PK is just 77.8.
The bottom line, if the Aeros come out ready to play tonight, there is no reason they should lose unless Antti Niemi stands on his head. That is who I think Rockford is going to send out there tonight, as he was supposed to start the last time they were here. He was sick, didn't play, and the Aeros hammered Corey Crawford.
When I go to Subway, I order footlongs, with no chips or drink. In my opinion this is a better value. When I order a footlong, often times I am working or driving when I eat, so I kindly ask the sandwich technician to slice it into three. Normally, 99 percent of the time, they get it ("Oh, so he wants to eat it and not worry about getting olives all over his shirt, etc!") and they slice it into three equal little "sammiches".
Today, though, this clearly did not cross the mind of my expert sandwich technician.