With 17 of 68 games complete, the Prince George Cougars are exactly 25 % of the way into their 2019-20 regular-season schedule.

With a record of 4-12-0-1, including 2-7 on home ice at CN Centre, it’s not a report card the Cougars can boast about.

Here are some stats that need shoring up if the team is to be in the playoff hunt come March.

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It is hard to explain how the Cougars have been outscored 34-10 in the second period, yet have outshot the opposition 179-178 in the middle frame. The Cats best period is the first where they have outscored the opposition 13-12. PG has been outscored 16-12 in the third.

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The Cougars can’t always rely on their goaltender to be their best player. In the four wins, the team’s goalie has been the first star (Taylor Gauthier and Tyler Brennan twice each).

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Special teams have long been a concern for Prince George. This season the Cougars are ranked 18th out of 22 on the power play (16 %) and 21st on the penalty kill (73 %).

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It will happen at some point but the Cougars have yet to win when (A) they have given up the first goal (0-9), (B) trailing after the first period (0-7) and (C) trailing after the second period (0-10).

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The Cougars are averaging a Western Conference low 2.12 goals per game while allowing 3.7 per game which is only ahead of Tri-City (3.8) in the West.

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The Cougars are just 2-6-0-1 in their own BC Division, and they haven’t played first place Kamloops yet. They do meet the Blazers 10 times, including four this month in a nine-day span.
PG won just two of nine meetings in the 2018-19 season against Kamloops.

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Games are not crucial in November but think of this. If the Cougars win both home games this weekend in regulation against Victoria, they will be just two points behind the Royals, who hold down the final Western Conference wild-card spot. Should the Royals win both in regulation, the gap between the two teams now hits double digits at 10 points and Victoria has two games in hand. Should they split, with neither game going to overtime, then it’s back to where the weekend started at six points.

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This is season two of Hartley’s Cat Scan, a weekly podcast show that primarily features the PG Cougars.

My guest on the eighth Cat Scan in year two is Ryan Howse, coach of the Cariboo Cougars Minor Midget team and former junior hockey sniper.

Why would one of the top goal scorers in WHL history all of a sudden quit hockey while playing minor pro in the Calgary Flame system at age 22?

Ryan admits he did not take care of his body and he started to doubt himself.

In the podcast (around the 13-minute mark) Howse stated his “off-ice habits were not good, the on-ice habits reflected that and mentally it started to break me down.”


FROM THE QUOTE RACK:  

Ex-Cleveland Browns safety Jermaine Whitehead has apologized for a Twitter rant after Sunday’s loss to Denver. The good news is he already has a job lined up in the communications department at the White House.

*Comedy writer Jim Barach http://jokesbyjim.blogspot.ca/

What’s with Cleveland QB Baker Mayfield and his moustache? He began Sunday with it comparable to Goose Gossage’s. He ended the day with it comparable to Bea Arthur’s.

*Contributor Bill Littlejohn of South Lake Tahoe, California

Chicago QB Mitch Trubisky is making Bears fans miss Jay Cutler.

*Comedy writer Janice Hough of Palo Alto, California www.leftcoastsportsbabe.com

LeBron James’ no-longer-secret hairpiece shifted during last Sunday’s Lakers-Jazz game, exposing his balding pate. Moving screen? No kidding.

*Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times http://www.seattletimes.com/author/dwight-perry/


IN CASE YOU MISS
ED IT:

The World’s largest bra was recently unveiled in London to promote breast cancer awareness — size 1222B! And Calgary thinks on November 24th they’re hosting a big Cup?

*Canadian comedy writer RJ Currie www.Sportsdeke.com

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Hartley Miller is the news and sports supervisor and morning news anchor for 94.3 the GOAT and Country 97.
He also is the 94.3 radio colour commentator for P.G. Cougars home games.
His column appears Fridays on myprincegeorgenow.com.
Send along a quote, note, or anecdote to hmiller@thegoatrocks.ca