Minor league rosters have a revolving door quality about them. Players come and go with no regard to what is best for the team. What I mean is an NHL team is not going to hold back from calling up a player from its AHL affiliate just because that player may be an important member on the team or the AHL team is in the midst of a battle for a playoff spot. It is kind of a tough existence, on one hand you have your team goal of qualifying for the playoffs and winning a championship while on the other hand you have so much counter productivity going on that you have no control over.
For the San Antonio Rampage the revolving door has been getting steady use. Nolan Yonkman and Jonathan Rheault have been returned by the Panthers and Eric Selleck and Quinton Howden have been called up. With the Panthers decimated by injuries, the Rampage have been decimated by call ups but that’s life for an AHL team and the only thing to do is fight through it.
San Antonio had a busy week playing four games. The week started Wednesday with a 3-2 home shootout loss to the Oklahoma City Barons. The team bounced back on Friday by defeating the Houston Aeros at home 4-2. Greg Rallo recorded his 20th and 21st goals while Quinton Howden had a goal and an assist. Goaltender Dov Grumet-Morris played well stopping 37 of 39. On Sunday the Rampage finished picked up another point albeit in a 5-4 shootout loss to the Abbotsford Heat. San Antonio newcomer Jack Combs recorded his first two goals with the Rampage. On Tuesday the Rampage ventured out on the road to face the Texas Stars. The team blew a two goal lead in the third period and ended up losing 4-3.
The Rampage currently sit six points behind the final playoff spot in the West Conference. With about a month’s worth of game remaining they are going to need some excellent play going forward if they hope to improbably qualify for the post-season. San Antonio plays two home games this week against the Oklahoma City Barons and the Rochester Americans.
In the ECHL, the Cincinnati Cyclones had a rare off week. The team only played two road games over the weekend and dropped both contests. On Friday the Cyclones fell 2-1 in a shootout to the Trenton Titans. It wasn’t all bad however as the point that the Cyclones picked up in the loss was enough to clinch a spot in the playoffs. Saturday was a huge game as the Cyclones faced off against the Reading Royals. It was a matchup against the leagues top two teams and at the time of the game both teams were tied for first place in the East with 88 points. The Cyclones outshot the Royals 34 to 21 but Reading managed to escape with a 3-2 win
Cincinnati is looking forward to the playoffs as the team only has six regular season games remaining. The games are still important because the Cyclones are in a dogfight with the Royals for the top spot in the East. Cincinnati plays tonight, Wednesday, and then plays three in a row Friday-Sunday.