The Chatterbox, Vol. 70

(Photo Credit: Jeff Hanisch)
Photographic proof that yesterday’s game was like watching a car crash. (Photo Credit: Jeff Hanisch)

Last night’s 4-2 loss meant that the Midwest Division currently stands with three teams locked in first place of the division with 66 points. As far as tie-breaks go: With more overall wins the Grand Rapids Griffins are out in front for the first time all season. The Milwaukee Admirals sit second. And the Rockford IceHogs, having played a game more than both the Griffins and Admirals, are third.

I don’t even think there is much to say at this point when it comes to Admirals performances against the Iowa Wild. It is mind cripplingly savage to understand the question of how the AHL’s worst team, consistently all season, is so successful against the Admirals – a top four Western Conference team. The Wild have won 18 games all season and have won 5 games against the Admirals… that’s 27.7% of their overall win total coming at the expense of the Admirals.

If we get to playoff time sitting second, third, or -heaven forbid- lower in the Midwest Division you’ll end up gawking back at the should haves on the season. Every single defeat to the Iowa Wild has been a should have. There’s really no excuse as to coming up empty and doing the better majority of it on home ice, to boot.

January was the rebound month for the Admirals. Things got back on track after a horrific month of December. Right now the Admirals have won just one game in their last six while pulling back four points from a possible twelve. It’s actually quite fortunate that the IceHogs have been hit and miss along with us. It’s allowed the Griffins, who are hot, to jump into the mix.

What the Admirals may need more than anything is their “want to get away” time off from playing. That’s precisely what the schedule will allow for this next week. The Admirals don’t play again until Friday. The bodies will get a good rest. The minds can check out for a little bit. And the team can get back to it with their sights firmly planted on the newly first placed Griffins in front of a big time concert night crowd.

After the game I spoke with Dean Evason, Austin Watson, and Zach Budish. Here is what they had to say following the game.

Dean Evason’s thoughts on the game:

Evason on the deflating feeling of going back down two goals in the third period:

Evason on how Iowa poses such problems to the Admirals:

Evason on getting bodies back in the lineup soon:

Evason’s thoughts on Kevin Fiala taking another step forward:

Evason breaks down Viktor Arvidsson‘s game against Iowa:

Evason on team resting and the Midwest Division tightening up:

Austin Watson on the Iowa Wild having the Admirals number this season:

Watson talks about the Ads allowing a goal right after scoring their first:

Watson on the upcoming break in the Admirals schedule:

Watson’s thoughts on the Midwest Division battle:

Zach Budish on the match-up against Iowa:

Budish on Iowa answering the Admirals first goal so quickly:

Budish on his season and performance with the Admirals:

Budish’s thoughts on the break in the schedule being a positive:

And, for those that missed it, there were interviews conducted prior to yesterday’s game as well. You can find those here.

Comments from the comments? Is the break going to be the boost the Admirals need to reset? Will the potential returns of Jimmy Oligny and Johan Alm be a boost to the team?

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