They have done this by committing to team defense and being successful shooting on Spokane goalie Eric Williams. The team defense was something that was spotty in the first round series with Everett. This was most likely because they dominated the flow of play so much that it was tough for them, at times, to make defensive adjustments on the rush. Portland has not dominated play nearly as much against Spokane. They were even out shot in Game 1. Spokane takes a lot of quick long shots trying to create rebounds in front of Portland goalie Mac Carruth. Carruth has not allowed rebounds right in front of net very much in this series and the Portland defense has done an excellent job of clearing out these rebounds and turning play in the other direction. This also helps Carruth get into the game more as well.
As far as the offensive side, that should come even more as Portland has gotten the better of goalies the more looks they have gotten at them. They struggled more with Eastern Conference squads in the regular season, because they were not used to shooting at them.
If Portland continues to play well in front of Carruth, blocking shots and clearing out rebounds, the Hawks should continue to have success in Games 3 and 4 in Spokane.
News and Links:
-Apparently, there was quite a bit of controversy over Keowna's Tyson Bailie's hit on Kamloop's Colin Smith in Game 1. Bailie was suspended for Game 2 and Smith sat out with an injury.
-Spokane's KREM.com makes the argument that too much rest has doomed the Chiefs coming into the series with Portland.
-Laurent Brossoit shut out the Medicine Hat Tigers in Game 2: 2-0. He has stopped 119 of the last 120 shots he has faced vs. the Tigers.
-In former Hawk News: Dan DaSilva scored a goal in a 2-0 victory for his Houston Aeros over Hamilton in the AHL. DaSilva has 5 goals and 5 assists in 16 games with Houston.
|Dan DaSilva Hawk from 2002-05|