The Houston Aeros come into this weekend in a freefall. They’ve lost three straight, and they’ve only managed one goal total in those three games. Their record, while still above the breakeven point at 27-22-3-2 (59 points), now finds them sitting in seventh place in the AHL Western Conference’s West Division, mere points above the last place Iowa Stars (the team that swept the Aeros last weekend), and the team now sits in tenth place in the playoff standings.
At this time last week, the Aeros were in fifth place in the division and sixth place in playoff rankings, but they have now been passed by division rivals Milwaukee Admirals and Quad City Flames. Since only eight teams from each conference make the playoffs, the Aeros have to get their act together for the remaining 28 regular season games.
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And if that doesn’t make things bad enough, try this. The Aeros will be playing the Syracuse Crunch tonight, the Hamilton Bulldogs on Saturday, and the Rochester Americans on Sunday. Three games which the Aeros need to win. Three games on the road.
And to start off those three games, Syracuse Crunch captain Zenon Konopka is waiting for the Aeros. Specifically, he’s waiting for Aeros defenseman John Scott. Apparently, when the Crunch played the Aeros at Toyota Center way back in October, Scott had the nerve to skate into the Crunch zone during pregame warm-ups. Konopka jabbed Scott with his stick and later said, "I made a promise that someone would fight him when he came to Syracuse.''
The one problem for Konokpa is that Aeros coach Kevin Constantine hasn’t been playing Scott lately, so if he’s going to have someone fight Scott, they might have to go up in the stands for the fight.
Ah, good times. That sounds like some old time hockey. – John Royal