With only two more games left in the round robin portion of the 2015 MasterCard Memorial Cup, the stakes grow ever higher. Tonight's matchup sees one team fighting for glory, while the other team fights to stay alive.
The Oshawa Generals, who came into the Memorial Cup with the best record in the CHL (51-11-2-4), have already clinched a spot in the semifinals. They've gone undefeated in the tournament so far, winning a pair of close games against the Quebec Remparts and the Rimouski Oceanic.
Although the scores haven't really reflected it, the Generals have been dominant possession-wise, outshooting the Remparts 31-18 and the Oceanic 37-22. A win tonight would allow the Generals to skip the semifinals altogether and guarantee them a spot in the finals.
The Kelowna Rockets, on the other hand, will need a win to keep their semifinal hopes alive. They lost 4-3 to the Remparts early in the tournament, then trounced the Oceanic with a decisive 7-3 win last night.
Despite the loss, they've been holding their own: they had strong possession numbers in their 4-3 loss, nearly matching the Oceanic shot for shot, and their star forward Nick Merkley has the most points of any player in the tournament with 5.
With a win, the Rockets put themselves in the mix for the semifinals, pending the results of the final game of the round robin.
The high stakes, dominant teams and high-scoring forwards should make this an exciting matchup. The game is at 7:30 EST and can be seen on Sportsnet and TVA Sports in Canada and on the NHL Network in the US.