The anatomy of a losing streak

With November coming to an end, the Red Deer Rebels will be more than happy to burn the page out of the calendar and shave any moustaches in order to exorcise the demons that plagued them.

One lonely regulation victory to their name on the month, back all the way on Nov. 14, sandwiched between losing streaks of five and the current six games.

They were outscored 20-6 in the third period of November, a telling stat in a miserable miscue of a month for the squad.

Only four goals on the power play in 53 chances, two of which came in the final game of the month against the Brandon Wheat Kings.

Even worse, the Rebels allowed a power play goal to their opponent in every one of the 12 games in November. The Rebels power play has slipped to 19th in the league at 17. 4 per cent, with goals on 19 of 108 chances.

Red Deer was short handed in the month an average of 5.3 times per game and allowed 17 goals on 54 opportunities. While the Victoria Royals are the most penalized team with 134 times shorthanded this season in 29 games, the Rebels are second with 130 in 27 games.

Lane Zablocki and Brandon Hagel have struggled mightily as the Rebels have tried to right the ship in November.

Both NHL drafted players, Zablocki, selected last year in the third round by the Detroit Red Wings had just two goals and five assists on the month. Hagel, picked by the Buffalo Sabres in the sixth round of the 2016 draft, had only two goals and two assists in November.

Only two forwards have reached double digits in goals, Mason McCarty with 14 and Kristian Reichel with 12. Only three of the Rebels 81 goals this season have come from Defenceman, with Alex Alexeyev, Sam Pouliot and Hunter Donohoe finding the mark.

Goalie Ethan Anders has been a welcomed surprise for Red Deer, he’s 11th in the league in goals against average (3.25) among netminders with 12 or more starts and 12th in save percentage (0.899). For a goalie with just 17 career WHL starts to his name, he has helped keep the Rebels afloat this year.

With all the doom and gloom that provided little to cheer about through an incredibly poor stretch, the Rebels are just two points behind Lethbridge for third in the Central Division and four back of Kootenay for second.

Red Deer will play six home games out of 10 scheduled games in December.

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