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Ice Chips

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    Former Komets star Joe Kastelic, who once owned the record for most goals scored in the IHL, died Wednesday at 81. He skated for the Komets from 1953 to 1957 and then again in 1960-61.
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    The Komets bolstered their roster with a potential No. 1 goaltender, a former first-round NHL draft pick, a familiar face and player who should be popular with the fans.
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Michelle Davies/The Journal Gazette
Dean Ouellet is one of several Komets battling through injuries right now.

K's on the phone

The top eight teams in the ECHL's Eastern Conference will make the playoffs and the Komets (26-20-11) are tied for eighth with the Florida Everblades (28-22-7).

The teams meet Friday and Saturday at Memorial Coliseum.

Only eight points separate fifth-place Cincinnati (70 points) and 10th-place Evansville (62), so while it's unlikely the Komets could get home-ice advantage in a first-round playoff series, they could still grab a decent seed or wind up having missed the playoffs in back-to-back years for the first time since 1974 and 1975.

The Komets are banged up: Dean Ouellet (head), Matt Carter (groin), Lincoln Kaleigh Schrock (shoulder) and Nathan Martine are all battling injuries.

Don't be surprised if the Komets make some moves before Thursday's trade deadline to help.

"We're in a numbers jam, but we have irons in the fire and are trying to get some bodies," coach Gary Graham said.

The Komets have already made 10 trades this season, but they're owed future considerations by Orlando (the Mickey Lang trade) and Utah (the Cody Reichard deal).

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 jcohn@jg.net.

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