The Kansas City Mavericks are not happy about missing the opportunity to play Tulsa at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena Tuesday night, but the ECHL team has not lost its sense of humor.
The Mavericks tweeted early Tuesday night, “Yes, the irony of a hockey game being postponed because of ice is not lost on us.”
The game has been rescheduled for 7:05 p.m., next Wednesday, Feb. 13 at SEC Arena.
While the icy conditions played a big role in the postponement, it was not the lone factor.
The Tulsa Oilers were having trouble making it to Independence, and initially, the game was moved from a 7:05 p.m. start to an 8:35 p.m. puck drop because of travel complications.
“When we travel, we check the weather to see what is coming,” Mavericks coach John-Scott Dickson said from his home Tuesday night. “Earlier this season, we went to Wichita and knew that there was a chance of a problem with the weather, so we left early and spent an hour in a Wichita QT parking lot because we got there so early.
“But we got there – and that’s important.”
It’s not the first time the Oilers have been late or forced a postponement, but team president and general manager Brent Thiessen said Tuesday’s postponement was difficult but the right decision to make.
“We don’t want our fans getting out in this icy weather,” Thiessen said. “But I have to be honest with you, there was a lot of pressure that went into this decision.
“First, we’re losing (forward) Mark Cooper and (forward) Mike McMurtry, who are both being called up (to the American Hockey League), and we would have had them tonight if we had played. And they have a player suspended for tonight’s game, so it would have been a great night to play with two of our best players still on the roster and them missing one of their top players.
“There was an initial thought of moving the game back to 8:35, but with the ice and the weather, it was best for our fans to move the game to next Wednesday. We’re not happy with it, and I know our fans are not happy that we’re not playing tonight, but we know our fans will be safe and ready to join us next week.”
Dickson said he is thrilled for Cooper being recalled to San Antonio and the team’s AHL affiliate, the Stockton Heat, recalling McMurtry.
“That’s why we’re here,” Dickson said, “to give our guys the chance to move up and possibly make it to the NHL. That attracts other quality players to our team and we are thrilled for Mac and Coop – but, we wish we could have played with them tonight because you know we’re a much better team with them in the lineup.”
The Mavericks did get another player back. The team announced on Twitter that defenseman Cliff Watson had been returned to the Mavericks from the AHL’s Utica Comets.