I’m pretty sure we all know the script by now because we’ve heard it so many damn times this season. So repeat after me in three…two…one…
The Aeros lost 5-2 to the [fill in the blank]. The game was closer than the score indicates. The Aeros out shot [fill in the blank]. The Aeros were full of effort and didn’t quit. A mistake here, a mistake there, the Aeros are defeated.
For instance, on [fill in the blank]’s second goal, Ryan Gunderson got beat badly which resulted in Wade Dubielewicz getting beat and which resulted in [fill in the blank] getting the 2-1 lead at 18:50 of the first period, not long after the Aeros had tied the game.
It’s a disturbing pattern seen throughout this season. The Aeros get back in a game. The Aeros get back out of the game.
“It always so disappointing,” Gunderson said. “Every time we tied it, we made mistakes and they capitalized.”
The key mistake this time around was Gunderson letting Texas’s Warren Peters go wide, wide, wide around and past him for an easy shot he should not have been able to have. Kevin Constantine wouldn’t put the blame on Gunderson. Gunderson was not so kind.
“I got beat wide,” he said. “That’s one of the things obviously I need to work on. It happens quite a bit. It’s discouraging.”
Yes it’s discouraging because it happens way too much. But Constantine took a different view of that play, and the responsibility for the goal.
“Before the puck got to Gunderson…” Constantine said, “before it got to the goalie, there were a lot of other issues related to that. At the end of the day, it’d be nice -- as you move from forwards to D to goaltending you’re escapability from mistakes gets less and less. Lots of mistakes leading to their forwards attacking our D. The D get to make some mistakes and goalies get to make none or the light’s on.”
And the lights were on.
The loss dropped the Aeros to 2-4 against Texas this season, and it dropped their record to 15-13-2-1 (33 points) and into fifth place. Rockford, 16-14-2-1 (35 points), Peoria, 16-10-1-2 (35 points), and Milwaukee, 15-8-1-4 (35 points) are all tied for second. Texas is in first at 20-8-2-2 (44 points). The Aeros next play on Sunday afternoon against the Grand Rapids Griffins.
SOME MISCELLANEOUS NOTES:
Okay, stop it right now. I know that a bunch of you are probably still bitching about Max Noreau’s third period shot at 5:59 not being called a goal. There’s a reason for that. IT WASN’T A GOAL.
Things weren’t helped by the Game Ops people showing the replay time, after time, after time, after time, after time. If you watch closely, you see the puck bounce off of the post. That black thing that you think is the puck crossing the line is actually the end of Texas goalie Matt Climie’s stick. It also didn’t help that certain people with arena microphones seemed to be egging on certain situations throughout the night.
The game ops people are getting out of control. They’re playing music during game action. They’re speaking constantly -- not goal/penalty info -- but utter nonsense. The Aeros might be a minor league team, and they can do all of the minor league crap they want during timeouts and intermissions, but they should really stop doing it during the game.
I figured out something tonight. This team bores me. I can see that they’re trying. And the defense is generally good, and there probably is more talent on this team than the one from two years ago, but this team bores me. The team two years ago needed Nolan Schaefer and Barry Brust to be perfect every night or the team was going to lose.
It’s a bit like that this season -- hell, it’s a lot like that this season. But the team two years ago wasn’t boring. Not to me. But this year’s team….I’m finding myself bored while I’m at the game. And I don’t like being bored.
Tonight’s song from The Beatles is “I’m A Loser.” That’s just not because the team lost, but because of a line in the song that goes “and I’m not what I appear to be.” This team isn’t what it appears to be. You see the goals scored and you think that the team’s just not trying. But they’re getting the shots. They’re usually in good position. But they’re always just a step slow, or a second off. They’re not the bad team they appear to be.
So until Sunday, here’s The Beatles.