Texas went 4-0-0 to extend its winning streak to seven games and increased its lead over Cincinnati in the race for the Brabham Cup by two points despite the Cyclones going 3-0-0 and extending their home winning streak to a team record and ECHL season-high 13 games.
Texas has 103 points (47-6-9) while Cincinnati has 93 points (45-9-3) and Las Vegas has 88 points (38-11-12). If the three were to win their remaining games, the Wildcatters and Cyclones would finish tied with 123 points while Las Vegas would have 110 points. Cincinnati would be the Brabham Cup recipient, as it would finish with 60 wins compared to 57 wins for Texas.
The Wranglers are trying to become the first team in ECHL history to have 100 points three seasons in a row after winning the Brabham Cup in 2006-07 with 106 points and finishing second in 2005-06 with 112 points which is the third-highest total in league history. The league record for points is 116 by Louisiana in 2001-02 while the second-most is 113 by Alaska in 2005-06. Alaska, Las Vegas and Trenton, which won the Brabham Cup in 2000-01 with 104 points and finished second with 102 points in 2001-02, are the only teams in ECHL history to score 100 points in back-to-back seasons.
The Brabham Cup is the trophy awarded to the ECHL regular season point champion, who is guaranteed home-ice advantage throughout its participation in the Kelly Cup Playoffs.
The award is named in recognition of Henry Brabham, who founded the ECHL in 1988-89 with five teams in four states. Brabham, who was the first inductee into the ECHL Hall of Fame, owned three of the original five teams, including the legendary Johnstown Chiefs who are celebrating their 20th season in 2007-08. The dedication of the Virginia businessman was crucial to the league surviving to span from coast-to-coast while advancing 350 players and countless coaches, on-ice officials and front office personnel to the National Hockey League.
Cincinnati leads the ECHL with 236 goals and 4.14 goals per game while Texas is second with 233 goals and 3.76 goals per game and Las Vegas is sixth with 209 goals and tied for ninth with 3.43 goals per game. The Cyclones have allowed a league-low 129 goals and lead the ECHL in goals-against average with 2.26 while Texas is second with 146 goals allowed and a goals-against average of 2.35 and Las Vegas is third with 150 goals allowed and a goals-against average of 2.46.
Texas reached 100 points in 61 games breaking the ECHL record of 62 games by Louisiana in 2001-02. The Wildcatters clinched their berth in the Kelly Cup Playoffs in only 48 games which broke the mark of 56 games by Louisiana in 2001-02.
The Wildcatters remain home to host Augusta on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Texas won 3-1 at Augusta on Mar. 4 to improve to 1-1-1 in the season series and 7-7-3 all-time against the Lynx. Texas, becomes the 23rd team in league history to reach 100 points, has set team records for points (101), wins (47) and road wins (25) and has tied its team record for home wins (22).
If it wins its next four games Cincinnati can reach 100 points in 61 games equaling the mark set by Texas. The Cyclones clinched their berth in the Kelly Cup Playoffs in 49 games. The Cyclones have won a team record and ECHL season-high 13 consecutive home games. They set the ECHL record with 17 wins in a row from Jan. 16-29, breaking the record of 14 games by Knoxville from Dec. 28, 1993-Jan. 29, 1994 and Louisiana from Nov. 23-Dec. 22, 2001.Cincinnati hosts Wheeling on Wednesday and Trenton on Thursday before visiting Wheeling on Friday and Dayton on Sunday. The Cyclones have won the last five meetings with the Nailers to improve to 4-0-0 at home and 3-1-0 at Wheeling. Cincinnati has won its last six games against Trenton and is 3-1-0 at home and 7-1-0 overall in the season series against the Devils. The Cyclones have won the last four meetings with Dayton to 7-3-0 overall and 3-1-0 on the road this year against the Devils.
Las Vegas continues its nine-game home stand when it hosts Utah on Friday and Saturday. The Wranglers have won the last seven meetings with the Grizzlies and are 7-1-0 overall and 3-1-0 at home against Utah this season.
Las Vegas is the defending Brabham Cup champion having won in 2006-07 with 106 points. The Wranglers finished one point ahead of Alaska, which had won the award in 2005-06 with 113 points, one point in front of Las Vegas. The Aces and Wranglers finished with the second-highest and third-highest point totals in league history in 2005-06.