Everett stayed at No. 10 in the weekly CHL rankings released Wednesday:
#CHL Announces Week 21 Top-10 Rankings:
1-SSM, 2-MJ, 3-BLB, 4-SAR, 5-SC, 6-KIT, 7-HAL, 8-DRU, 9-HAM, 10-EVT.
Honours: RIM, POR, BAT. pic.twitter.com/gec5oVKxqg
— CanadianHockeyLeague (@CHLHockey) February 14, 2018
We’re at that point in the hockey season when the Everett Silvertips staff is carefully managing its on-ice time versus its rest time.
The Tips went hard on Tuesday, but didn’t skate Wednesday. That makes sense with the team coming off a three games-in-three days last weekend and prepping for four-in-five this weekend.
Tuesdays are frequently “competition” days between the players clad in green and grey sweaters. The teams take part in a number of drills with the losing team skating laps at the end of the particular drill.
“Guys hate losing,” head coach Dennis Williams said Tuesday. “People love to win but you absolutely have to hate to lose. That’s what we try to instill in our guys. You don’t want to be the team losing 3-2 and have to skate down and back and whatnot because the other team is over there celebrating and gloating.”
Defenseman Gianni Fairbrother skated in a non-contact jersey, but it has to be encouraging to see him back on the ice. The WHL weekly injury report still lists him out 1-3 weeks. Fairbrother has been out with an upper body injury since Dec. 6.
Tips D Gianni Fairbrother is skating with the team in a non-contact jersey. He’s been out since early December with an upper body injury: pic.twitter.com/QgsYL3ASoR
— Jesse Geleynse (@JesseGeleynse) February 13, 2018
Bronson Sharp has been back at practice for a week and is officially healthy per the weekly report, but Williams indicated he still needs to complete some conditioning drills and is unlikely to play this weekend.
Everett finished up last weekend by earning five of six possible points. The Tips held on for a gutsy victory at Spokane Sunday evening two days after a disappointing home loss to the Chiefs. Sunday’s effort was somewhat sloppy by both teams before the Tips prevailed 3-2 despite a third-period comeback from Spokane.
“That’s what you get sometimes,” Williams said. “It’s a physical issue, but it’s also a mental issue. I told our guys, ‘Never critique a win.’ Five of six (points) on the weekend is nothing to shy away from. As long as we continue to get better this week from and we have another hard three-in-three.”
Everett plays a home-and-home with Seattle beginning Friday in Kent. Then Kamloops comes to town Sunday before the Tips head back to Spokane for another game Tuesday. So it’s another full workload in the coming days.
For the latest Silvertips news follow Jesse Geleynse on Twitter.