As the season heads into the homestretch, we take the time out to look at the final twenty games for each of the American OHL teams.
Flint is the second American team to reach 48 games. That came after their first win in 15 games against the Saginaw Spirit.
After 48 Games: 15-28-3-2 | 36 points | 9th place in the West
The inaugural season of the Flint Firebirds has not been kind to the team. This is the former Plymouth Whalers team that was bought in January of the 2014-15 season and moved to Flint after the Whalers season ended with the team missing the playoffs for the first time in 24 years, and only the second time in team history.
The team, while not on fire, was strong in the opening months of the season. However at the beginning of November there was the issue with the coaches being fired and the team walking off. Then the team traded Nedeljkovic and Wesley to Niagara, and Chatham to Windsor. Kyle Keyser was injured and only came back this weekend.
That may have contributed to the team's lackluster performance at home. The Firebirds have a home record of 7-10-4, with the last home win coming against the Saginaw Spirit just before Thanksgiving.
Flint is on the outside looking in. While normally it would be easy to say a ten point deficit could be made up, that is hoping that the team ahead of them, Saginaw, goes on a winless streak to end the season.
While I do not see that happening, they players are working hard. Games have been close, but the Firebirds have not been able to seal the deal.
Looking at the final twenty games of the season, Flint does not have the easiest schedule to close out the season.
- According to SportsClubStats.com the Firebirds have a 2.9% chance of making the playoffs.
- Flint has a 11-20-3 records against the teams they are facing for the final twenty games.
- 13 home games remain this season.
- Six games remaining are against teams within the West Division
- Eight games out of the final twenty are against teams with a 75% win percentage.
- The Firebirds play three games against teams with a losing record.
- Still in the sights is the I-75 Divide Cup, which the series is currently tied at 4-2-1.
Flint is trying to build for seasons to come. This may not have been the way that the organization has wanted it to go, but this is how it turned out. Would this season have turned out differently if Ryan McLeod reported for to the team? Possibly, but he only has 18 points on the season. He may have helped put a game or two in the win column, but I doubt he would have changed the outcome that much for the Firebirds.