We have unfortunately neglected our adopted Aussies for a long time now, and will attempt to make up for that by filling you in on how the team has been doing in our absence.
When we last talked about the Sydney Bears, it was the first weekend of the AIHL and they had just lost their home opener. Unfortunately, as the schedule below shows, things haven't gotten too much better since that time.
The Bears were missing Australian national team goalie Anthony Kimlin to begin the season, and even after his return found their defence getting breached more often than not. After 11 games played, Sydney find themselves way in the wrong half of the table, but with two months to go before the playoffs, there is still time to correct the situation.
The points structure is a little different in the AIHL, with three points for a regulation win, two points for a shootout win, one point for a shootout loss and none for a regulation loss.
Despite their lowly position though, six Bears were nominated to the AIHL All-Star Weekend which is scheduled to take place next weekend. Fans will have the opportunity to win tickets to meet the star of the US vs Canada game, the reigning NHL All-Star Game MVP and former Buffalo Sabres forward John Scott.
Here are the Bears who made it to the game talking about the opportunity -
Sydney Bears captain Michael Schlamp spoke separately about the All-Star Weekend in an AIHL interview.
Both starting goalie Kimlin and Schlamp were assessed with two-game suspensions after getting involved in an altercation with a CBR Brave forward who crashed into the goaltender last weekend. The team didn't do too badly in their absence though, picking up their first regulation win of the season on Saturday beating Adelaide Adrenaline 6-2, and then adding a shootout win over the same opponents on Sunday to pick up five much-needed points.