Something’s Gotta Give: Undefeated Rhinos, Blazers to Battle
They're the only two undefeated teams left in the league. They've each outscored their opponents by more than 130 goals. They both like to play tough, physical hockey. And they go head-to-head this weekend.
Cue the fireworks.
The El Paso Rhinos (24-0-0, 48 points) and the Oklahoma City Blazers (21-0-0, 42 points) are Nos. 1 and 2 in the Mid-West Division of the Western States Hockey League. But for the fact the Rhinos have played three more games, they'd probably be in a flat-footed tie atop the division.
No matter. Things will get start to get sorted this weekend.
Oklahoma City has scored more goals (205 to the Rhinos' 167), but El Paso has played – and won – a lot more on the road (15 games to the Blazers' three).
Both teams sport opportunistic, high-octane offenses. The Rhinos have scored a league-leading 15 short-handed goals, the Blazers have 13.
Both El Paso and Oklahoma City have goaltenders near the top of the league – the Rhinos' Filip Krasanovsky and the Blazers' Patrick Wiens are tied for sixth with a 93.2 saves percentage.
All-in-all it should make for a fun, hard-hitting, entertaining three-game series Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. MST and Sunday at 4:30 p.m. MST.
It's Military Appreciation Weekend at the Hospitals of Providence Events Center. The Rhinos will sport special fatigue-style uniforms that will be auctioned off after Saturday's second game.
As always, active-duty and retired military personnel and their immediate families get free tickets to watch Rhinos home games with a valid ID. One lucky member of the military will have the opportunity to win a brand new Ford F150 from Shamaley Ford during Saturday's game.
For tickets and information on other team specials, go to elpasorhinos.com or call, 915.479.PUCK (7825).