The San Francisco Bulls have returned from an unmemorable three game road trip. Perhaps it wasn’t really unmemorable. The back and forth scoring and last-second tying goal in Las Vegas was pretty exciting, but the team still didn’t bring a win home.
Tonight they face the by now familiar Bakersfield Condors at the Cow Palace. As of Monday, the Bulls’ forward lines still looked much the same, aside from the possibility of Tarasov and Clendenning switching lines. But that was just one practice two days ago, hardly conclusive.
The Condors won in a shootout last Saturday against Stockton, ending a six-game losing streak. They are 5-2 in shootouts this season, so that would probably be a good situation to avoid with them. They are in last place in the division.
The ECHL site gave a tidy preview of tonight’s game:
Levi Nelson leads Bakersfield against the Bulls with three goals and seven points.
San Francisco’s Sacha Guimond is tied for second among defensemen with six goals.
Condors are fourth on the power play on the road at 22.2 percent (12-for-54).
Bulls are 5-1-0 when outshooting their opponent.
The Bulls are still third in the division, but they have a ways to go to move up from there. The second place Thunder have three games in hand and eight points on the Bulls. Division leader Ontario is just two points ahead of Stockton.
A quick look at league points standings also shows Captain Justin Bowers and Dean Ouellet in 14th and 15th places respectively. Dean Ouellet sits in sixth place among goal scorers.
I feel sort of guilty about praising the team’s penalty kill before the road trip. It did not fare well. I’ll put that out of my mind and assume it is safe to mention the scoring leaders.
The Bulls have proven that their games are fun to watch. The final scores have gotten much closer than the start of the season. Except for last Friday’s game at Utah, they haven’t been on the wrong side of lopsided score for a while.
After such a lengthy losing road trip, they must be ready to get back to work. Puck drop is at 7:15.
(Originally published at Kukla’s Korner)