I'm not going to waste a lot of space on this game, a 5-4 loss to the Milwaukee Admirals that came about after the Aeros had a 4-2 third period lead. Mike Yeo kept the team locked up in the locker room for a long time after the game -- he kept them locked up way longer than Kevin Constantine ever did after a loss, and Kevin had a bit of a reputation for ripping into players.
So here are a few brief observations...
1. Patrick O'Sullivan pulled off a Krys Kolanos tonight, and that's not meant as a compliment. He had two goals -- one on a beautiful breakaway off of a good defensive play by Justin Falk -- and he assisted on Warren Peter's goal in the third. However, O'Sullivan forget to put forth much, if any, effort on defense, and he drew several really stupid penalties in the third period as the team was melting down.
2. It's easy to look at the score and say that Anton Khudobin had a bad game. It's easy, but that's not totally accurate. Milwaukee's second goal came about after Jamie Fraser got his stick on a puck and deflected a shot past Khudobin. Milwaukee's third goal came from Falk screening Khudobin. The fourth goal came after Khudobin blocked a shot, only to have Kris Fredheim get in the way and have the puck bounce off of his chest and into the net. And Khudobin blocked the fifth goal, only to have it rebound past him and just kind of rest on the line while Aero after Aero flailed away hopelessly at the puck.
3. The Aeros really melted down in the third period and it sure looked like, from the press box, that they just lost their composure. If I had been the coach, I would have called a time out after that fourth goal, the one that bounced off of Fredheim, and tried to calm the team down. I thought of asking Yeo about this after the game, but, well, after the long wait, I just wanted to get some general comments so I could go up and get my story written for the mothership.
4. The lines have changed. Carson McMillan/Jed Ortmeyer/Colton Gillies were the starting line. Patrick O'Sullivan/Jon DiSalvatore/Warren Peters were the second. Robbie Earl/Chad Rau/Jarod Palmer were line three, and Matt Kassian/JM Daoust/Brandon Buck were the fourth.
5. The team was incredibly hot in January. It was inevitable they would cool down and lose a few games. So I wouldn't stress out, yet. This happens to all teams -- after all, the Aeros would have never risen up the standings, no matter how good they played, if the teams in front wouldn't have lost a few. That said, the Aeros can't afford to go into a prolonged slump.