The Fort Wayne Komets come into the first round of the 2017 Kelly Cup Playoffs on fire, winning six of their last seven games. Two of those wins came against their first-round opponent, the Quad City Mallards, and one against the Brabham Cup-winning Toledo Walleye. The Komets have been hot practically the whole year, only losing 19 games in regulation throughout the 72-game season. The K’s haven’t lost more than three consecutive games the whole year. The last time they lost consecutive games dates to February 19 and 22 when they lost by one goal to the Cincinnati Cyclones and, ironically enough, the Quad City Mallards. The Komets go into the playoffs with the best home record in the ECHL (28-7-0-1, 57 pts), which is where they start in the first round of the Kelly Cup Playoffs, which makes sense, as they have the highest average attendance in the league at 7,568. The Komets are 4-1-0-1 at home this year against the Mallards, and 8-2-1-1 this season overall against the club from Moline, Illinois.
On the other hand, we have the inconsistent team from Moline, the ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Nashville Predators, the Quad City Mallards. At one point in the season, the Mallards went from winning three games in a row to losing six in a row; they then traded wins and losses for the next six games. They then went on to win eight in a row. They have constantly been trading wins and losses the whole season, along with losing and winning streaks right next to each other on the calendar. The Mallards have always been able to hang around the Komets, beating them twice this year and claiming a winning record against the club last season, but they will need to step up their game, especially early, as they will take on a tough Fort Wayne team on the road in front of the largest and loudest crowd in the league.
ROUND 1 SCHEDULE
Game 1: Quad City @ Fort Wayne (4/14 8:00 p.m.)
Game 2: Quad City @ Fort Wayne (4/15 7:30 p.m.)
Game 3: Fort Wayne @ Quad City (4/19 7:35 p.m.)
Game 4: Fort Wayne @ Quad City (4/21 8:05 p.m.)
Game 5*: Fort Wayne @ Quad City (4/22 8:05 p.m.)
Game 6*: Quad City @ Fort Wayne (4/24 7:30 p.m.)
Game 7*: Quad City @ Fort Wayne (4/26 7:30 p.m.) *if necessary