PREVIEW:: Canberra Knights @ Sydney Ice Dogs

Photo : mohawkphotos.net

Photo : mohawkphotos.net

VENUE & DATE

Sunday August 3 – 5 pm @ Liverpool Catholic Club, Liverpool, Sydney

LAST TIME

09/06/2013 – Sydney Ice Dogs 6 def. Canberra Knights 1 @ Liverpool Catholic Club, Liverpool, Sydney

WHAT’S WHAT

With the season winding down for the Knights, it will be interesting to see how they respond. Having been out of the running for quite a few weeks and now on a 15-game losing streak, you would think it would be all the Ice Dogs way. However, the Knights will be hungry to grab a win or two by the end of the season. It’s a danger game for the Ice Dogs, who can’t afford to become complacent against the cellar dwellers, especially as Canberra regularly step up against the Sydney-siders. And the Knights have been holding their own against the Ice, Thunder, Adrenaline and even early against the North Stars last month, even though scores have varied, due mostly to the Knights short benches on the road. Meanwhile, the Dogs are still in the running for first and will want to take this game to either, stay in touch if they lose to the North Stars in Newcastle on Saturday, or to better their position at the head of the ladder should they win.

WHO’S HOT

The Knights have relied on Chris Slauenwhite all year and will have to do so again. The Ice Dogs attack hasn’t been having as many shots as usual so this might make the match closer if the Knights can get plenty of shots on goal. Slauenwhite will do his job, as he has done all year, but it’s up to the defencemen to stand up and the offence to get on the board.

The Ice Dogs have uncovered a reasonably unlikely combination that has the opportunity to turn the competition on its head. Import Simon Barg has been hooking up with Dogs veterans David Dunwoodie and Todd Stephenson to team up in some combination to score 8 out of 16 goals in the Dogs last four games. With these guys playing so aggressively, the Knights will have to watch out.

WE THINK

Although the Knights will be keen for a win, the season is already gone and it wouldn’t be surprising if the Knights again bring a short bench up to Sydney. The Ice Dogs on the other hand are riding high and will want a strong August to be ready for the finals in Melbourne. If the Ice Dogs don’t underestimate the wounded Knights, the home team should come away with a big win which will help their points differential and provide some offensive confidence with September in sight.

By Andrew McMurtry

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Andrew McMurtry

Andrew McMurtry

Andrew was born and raised in Western Sydney and grew up on a diet of Rugby League and Cricket. However, after becoming relatively disenfranchised with both sports in the last year or so, he sought out a new favorite sport after a chance meeting with Sydney Ice Dogs and Australian National Team star Scottie Stephenson. Since then, the love for Ice Hockey has grown strong. He joined the Ice Dogs as a journalist and was getting various arrows published in local papers and at AIHL.com but with TOH, he hopes to cover more than just the matches and let the fans into the lives of the players. Andrew recently completed his Honours degree at the University of Western Sydney in October 2011 and has since found a job in journalism, writing for MediaConnect, although a little too much of his time is spent watching and following the New Jersey Devils in the NHL. In his spare time, he writes for FILMINK magazine as a contributing writer and tries to be the best man he can for his beautiful fiancée. Follow Andrew at his twitter account @andrewmcmurtry as he does his part to help Ice Hockey take it’s rightful place in the upper echelons on Australian sport.
Andrew McMurtry

@AndrewMcMurtry

Husband, sports journo @FairfaxMedia and @AIHL historian. Father to three kids desperate to deprive us of sleep. All views are my own.
#battleofthewest - cannot wait for the @FFACup quarter final. Should be a cracker! #MagicOfTheCup #FFACup https://t.co/SR55BTPqwt - 3 weeks ago
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