The ECHL changed the playoff format in the 2016-2017 season. When it made that change a new division, the Mountain Division. Since it’s inception the Colorado Eagles were able to win back to back Kelly Cups, but since they moved up to the AHL it’s time for a new Kelly Cup Champion. The Allen Americans, who missed the playoffs this season, were back to back champions prior to the creation of the Mountain Division.
#1 Tulsa Oilers vs #4 Kansas City Mavericks
Season Series: Tulsa 7-4
Players to Watch: K.C.: F- Rocco Carzo 20G 39A 59 Points
D- Jordan Klimek 6G 12A 18 Points 14 +/-
G- Mason McDonald 23-10-1-2 2.54 GAA .917 SV%
Tulsa: F- Adam Pleskach 38G 37A 75 Points
D-Dylan Bredo 5G 43A 48 Points 19 +/-
G- Devin Williams 20-9-4 2.12 GAA .916 SV%
Prediction: Tulsa in 6. The key to victory in this series is goaltending. Both teams have solid goaltenders in Devin Williams (Tul) and Mason McDonald (KC). If Kansas City can play tough defensively then they can easily win this series, but Tulsa has some offensive weapons that will probably allow them to come back and win this series.
#2 Idaho Steelheads vs #3 Utah Grizzlies
Season Series: Utah 9-4-2
Players to Watch: Utah: F- Caleb Herbert 32G 39A 71 Points
D- Taylor Richart 8G 23A 5 +/-
G- Kevin Carr 20-9-2-1 2.66 GAA .906 SV%
Idaho: F- Steven McParland 28G 31A 57 points
D- Nolan Gluchowski 11G 29A 40 Points 6 +/-
G- Tomas Sholl 26-12-1 2.29 GAA .922 SV%
Prediction: Utah in 7. The Grizzlies set the tone last night by winning 7-1 in Idaho. The key to this series is discipline both teams are extremely talented, play physical, and have great goaltending. Idaho needs to reset the tone by winning tonight. If Utah wins then this could be a 4 or 5 game series.
Featured Photo Credit: ECHL.com
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