February 2, 2018 12:14 PM
Before the recent flu epidemic hit the U.S., a different bug hit the NHL: the “Vegas Flu.”
Rosemont, Illinois may not have the same bright lights, grand casinos and nightclubs, but the Golden Knights’ affiliate, the Chicago Wolves, are also making their home ice a sickly sort of environment for opponents.
The Wolves and the the city are both new for much of the team’s roster, but it’s clearly becoming a comfortable home. The team set a new a franchise home win streak at 10 games on Jan. 21 – the previous record was set in 2003 – and it’s currently the best run in the AHL.
“This is home,” head coach Rocky Thompson said. “I always knew as a visitor, coach, and even as a player, the atmosphere is great. They do such a great job and our fans are so good.”
Chicago has provided plenty of offense during the streak. The Wolves have outscored opponents 44-20 in 10 games; in three of those, they scored six goals. Only one of the victories since Dec. 6 has been a one-goal game.
Average attendance has reached 8,071 during the past 10 games at Allstate Arena, including two crowds that surpassed 12,000 fans.
“In my opinion, you’re playing in the best city in the world, with some amazing people,” forward Brandon Pirri said. “It shouldn’t matter what the crowd is like, but when there’s that many people in the crowd, it gives you that extra boost.”