Game 24 Preview: Tucson at Iowa
Game 24 Preview: Tucson At IowaDec 10th 2019, 12:49, by Walt Ruff
Game #24 - Tucson (18-5-0-0) at Iowa (12-8-2-2)
6 PM MST, Wells Fargo Arena, Des Moines, IA
LISTEN LIVE Fox Sports 1450, iHeart Radio app
WATCH LIVE AHL TV
Roadrunners Current Roster: Click here
Referees: Ted Anstett (#77), Ian McCambridge (#63)
Linesmen: Cam Dykstra (#63), Chad Evers (#5)
Three games in three different cities against three different opponents in five nights begins tonight for Tucson with a rematch against an Iowa club that Tucson handled in 4-1 fashion Saturday night.
This week is going to be a challenge for the Roadrunners but they've given many reasons already this season to have faith in them when the sledding gets tough.
1) The tough part of tonight's contest is that Iowa has had time to rest and recover following their outrageously tough schedule of playing Friday night in Milwaukee and then Saturday at home. The two best teams in the AHL on back-to-back nights with a six hour bus travel in between? That's incredibly rough. What that likely spells though is that this is going to be an Iowa club that's likely very unhappy with how all of the weekend's ventures transpired for them and they're going to want to reset here tonight. It's a depleted group because of health issues with their parent Minnesota Wild, but they've got some tough customers on their roster and if the final 25 minutes of Saturday's game are any indication of what's going to go on tonight, they're going to be physical from the hop.
2) Michael Chaput, third on the team with nine goals, is expected to return to the lineup tonight after his nine-day recall to the parent Arizona Coyotes. Tucson's captain will play an especially crucial role in tonight's game should the aforementioned physicality from Iowa come to fruition. Chaput can handle his own but more importantly police the scene while also contributing in a key role up front.
3) It's overlooked to an extent with how well the team is playing as a whole, but having two top tier goaltenders in situations such as this impending three games in five days with numerous miles in between is such a benefit. Many teams around the league that imply the "starter and backup" mindset would likely go into one of these three games with a little more worry than normal having to go with their number two in net, however, for Tucson, there's no "backup". It's two goaltenders who both have wins in 70%+ of their starts on the season and have showcased on many occasions that they can usher their team to victory with upwards of 40 stops. Tonight is projected to be Hill's turn in the net. It would be the seventh-straight games that the Tucson goaltending tandem has alternated starts.
What's The Word?
Roadrunners forward Kevin Hancock on why the team was successful Saturday night...
"We had all four lines going on Saturday and it was huge. We were able to get everyone into the game and it created a lot of offense and momentum for us."
Roadrunners forward Kevin Hancock on the play of his linemate Jon Martin, who had a pair of goals in the win and now ranks fourth on the team with eight goals...
"He's been getting to the dirty areas. Both of his goals came from right on top of the crease. He's not afraid to go to the net it's paying off."
Roadrunners forward Kevin Hancock and what the team is expecting tonight...
"They're going to come out a lot harder tonight than they did Saturday. We just have to be ready and stick to our game plan."
Number to Know
10. The Roadrunners are 10-1 all-time against the Iowa Wild entering tonight's contest. There's nobody who Tucson has "had the number more of" through their three-plus seasons and the Roadrunners will look to conclude the season series tonight with a full four-game sweep for the second time in the three seasons that they've played them.
We're Doing It Live
Catch tonight's active LIVE on AHLTV or join Roadrunners play-by-play voice Adrian Denny on Fox Sports 1450 AM and iHeart Radio as he calls the game from the Roadrunners' flagship radio station, where coverage begins at 5:45 PM.
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