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02/25/2012 9:41 AM -
Prepping for Playoffs
Feb. 24, 2012
El Paso, TX – It certainly wasn’t the worst night the El Paso Rhinos have had all season but it wasn’t exactly one of their better showings. And while higher shot totals typically equal wins, it takes good shots to go in the net.
On Friday, the Rhinos hosted the Dallas Ice Jets for game one of their final series of the 2011-2012 regular season. With playoffs right around the corner, the number 1 seed locked up, and no real streak to keep intact, there is hardly a justifiable reason for El Paso to play all out this weekend.
Of course it is important for a coach to continue instilling a hard work ethic into his players and encouraging them to play them with all they’ve got; however, this is also time to give the third and fourth liners some extra work so star players can get their rest. Look for Coach Cory Herman to do just that this weekend.
Momentum is the other factor that a coach needs to balance. Nobody likes heading to playoffs after coming off of a horrible series. Staying focused, energetic, and primed is how a team wants to move on. Although losses do not diminish momentum, it’s bad losses and this was not one of those instances. Instead, it was just another 5-3 loss in an otherwise incredible second half of a season.
Matt Prosser, El Paso Rhinos Beat Writer for JuniorHockey.com. Owner of Fifty8 Productions and freelance writer from the San Francisco Bay Area. Voice of California State University, Sacramento Hockey and host of The Sports Cycle with Matt Prosser on KSSU1580 Sacramento. For comments and writing ventures e-mail Matt@Fifty8productions.com. Follow on Twitter @MattProsser58.