“There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.”
“That’s why they play the game.”
The two cliches go hand-in-hand or – more to the point for the purposes of this weekend’s home-and-home series betweenthe Comox Valley Glacier Kings and Campbell River Storm – gauntlet-in-gauntlet.
The two Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League rivals, who meet tonight in Campbell River and tomorrow night in Courtenay, are at opposite ends of both the North Division standings and league special team stats.
The division-leading Icemen are 11-3-0-1 while the cellar-dwelling Storm at 4-11-0-0. The Yetis are overall special team (power play, penalty kill, shorthanded goals) leaders while Campbell River is last in all three categories.
But all those bean-counter stats didn’t amount to a hill of beans this past weekend when the Storm blew into the Comox Valley on Saturday and dealt the Glacier Kings a 6-2 loss. The visitors went 1-for10 on the power play while the Yetis were 0-for-6 with the man advantage.
It didn’t help the Icemen that league-leading scorer and team captain Jackson Garrett was sidelined with a knee injury, and his value to the team was underlined the next day when Garrett returned to the lineup and put up four points (two goals, including the power-play winner) to lead the Kings to a 5-2 road win over the Oceanside Generals.
This weekend’s twin bill with the Storm will be the fourth and fifth meetings of the season between the two clubs. Comox Valley won the first two on the road 8-4 and 4-2 before losing 6-2 at home this past Saturday.
On paper, those “lies, damned lies and statistics” show the Kings should prevail. On the ice, anything can happen. After all, “That’s why they play the game.” The puck drops at 7:30 p.m. both Friday in Campbell (Rod Brind’Amour Arena) and Saturday in Courtenay (Comox Valley Sports Centre).