Photo Credit: Micheline Veluvolu/Rochester Americans
1. LEGGIO LARGE: Despite a 44-26 edge in shots, the Heat lost 5-0. It seems preposterous, but it’s true. David Leggio was strong in his third shutout of the season and got help with two posts rung by the Heat. While there were a few rebounds in the early going, the AHL’s leader in Minutes Played, Wins, and Saves quickly rounded into vacuum like form, with second chances few and far between. It sounds like a broken record, but the Heat deserved a better fate on this night. The Amerks were outshot 32-15 in the final 40 minutes of play.
2. SPECIAL TEAMS SLUMP: The Heat have now scored a power play goal in just one of their last seven games, while the penalty kill has been beaten seven times in the last three contests. Abbotsford went without a goal on five power plays, while the penalty kill was 5/8 on Friday night. It was better than the stats would indicate though, as one of the power play goals against came down 5-on-3 on a back door pass, another was a lucky pinball goal that bounced off the end wall, then a defender and then back into the Heat net. Horseshoes.
3. BEING BLANKED: The Heat have scored six goals in the last five games, and have been shutout three times over that stretch. Leland Irving – who got the hook after two goals on four shots – has gotten the worst of the ‘run support’ this season having five of his eleven starts finish without a Heat goal. Back-to-back shutouts have the Heat out of a playoff spot for the first time all season. It’s always darkest before dawn, let’s hope the Heat can turn the corner soon.