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Ice Chips

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Interesting times

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. -- The Bloomington Pantagraph today hammered home not only the PrairieThunder's 5-2 loss to Fort Wayne in its playoff opener -- click here -- mentioning the fracas between owners earlier in the week, as well as the lien the IRS put on the team.

And on the front page of the newspaper was an analysis of how U.S. Cellular Coliseum is faring. Click here.

I think the timing of these stories, and the tone, is great.

This is the time at which attention on the PrairieThunder is at its highest. Newspapers should be objective and evaluate that.

Just because it's playoffs, it's not a journalist's job to overlook things off the ice, though teams sometimes seem to think that's not the case, especially in the playoffs.

Kudos to the Pantagraph.

  • As for today's Game 2, the Komets are sticking with the same lineup.
  • I've spoken to a lot of people within the Bloomington organization. I can tell you, that were relieved -- not upset -- that so many Fort Wayne fans came for Game 1. Had they not been here, the building would have been really empty. Attendance was 2,140 with about 500 Fort Wayne fans. I expect the same amount of Fort Wayne fans to be here today.
  • This game starts at 4 p.m. locally. I love that. Not that there's anything wrong with Fort Wayne's 5 p.m. Sunday starts, but I think earlier the better on the weekends because it enables kids to come. Of course, it's not usually feasible in the minor leagues because teams are busing overnight. But when they have a day off the night before, the occasional early start is a really cool thing.
  • So, I called my shot yesterday with Mathieu Curadeau needing a big game and he came through. For today, I think a pivotal player will be Lincoln Kaleigh Schrock. He was a good agitator in Game 1, and I would expect more of that from him, but he has to be smart. Also, he's got such great speed, he can put the puck in the net against the PrairieThunder. I think I saw Schrock and Garrett Klotz exchanging words before the game. The PrairieThunder needs a good performance from its goalie, which will be Brad Phillips, not Marco Emond, who was yanked after two periods in Game 1.

Justin A. Cohn, pro sports coordinator for The Journal Gazette, has been covering the Fort Wayne Komets since 1997. His reporting includes game stories from home and away, features about the players and personalities associated with the Komets, plus coverage of issues affecting hockey at all levels. A native of Bloomfield Hills, Mich., Cohn graduated from Emory University in Atlanta. He can be reached at 260-461-8429 or by email at