One doesn’t have to be Kenny Loggins to realize, “this is it.” This, being the upcoming home-stand for the Albany Devils. More specifically, this weekend’s three-and-three at the Times Union Center, when the Devils host the Worcester Sharks, Syracuse Crunch and Springfield Falcons.
After winning just two games in February, Albany has matched that total (2-0-1) already in March, earning a point in each contest thus far. Currently the sixth through eighth spots in the Eastern Conference are knotted up at 70 points apiece, with the aforementioned Sharks, Falcons and Portland Pirates all playing musical chairs. With 59 games played, Albany has 62 points and is eight back of a postseason berth. The Devils have a game in hand on Springfield and the same amount of games played as Worcester and Portland. Additionally, Albany has to jump the Hartford Wolf Pack and St. John’s IceCaps, in making their climb to a Playoff spot.
On the campaign the A-Devils are 1-0-1 against the Sharks, most recently falling 2-1 in OT at the TU Center. Against the Crunch, Albany carries a ledger of 1-2-1-2, with their last outing resulting in some fireworks, a 7-6 affair in favor of the Devils at Syracuse. Rounding out the weekend, the Devils are 3-3-0-0 when facing the Falcons, with their last matchup a 4-2 loss at Springfield.
The Devils, who are reportedly close to an agreement to a 3-to-5-year extension with the TU Center, are 14-9-2-3 on home ice this season.
They’ll look to ride that home ice and the hot hands of Stefan Matteau, Darcy Zajac and Reid Boucher. Pocketing a pair of goals in two consecutive bouts at St. John’s, Matteau is riding a second half hot-streak, posting points in each of his past six games. Zajac also has points in four of his last five games. Meanwhile, Boucher, coming off his sixth multi-point game of the campaign, is fourth on the club in points.
So while the grinding AHL season is far from over, the A-Devils will need to keep marching on the road to the Playoffs or risk driving on the highway to the danger zone.