The Prince George Cougars have yet to play the Portland Winterhawks this WHL season but by the end of the week both teams will be well-acquainted.
Over the next six days the Cougars and Winterhawks will play each other four times, including a two -game set at CN Centre Tuesday and Wednesday, and back-to-back weekend games in Portland Saturday and Sunday.
Based on their record since the season started September, the ‘Hawks will be formidable opponents for the Cougars. With 35 points in 25 games, Portland (16-6-1-2) is currently tied with Everett for first in the Western Conference, 21 points ahead of the Cougars (6-17-0-2), who rank 10th in the 10-team conference.
The Cougars are coming off a 3-2 loss to the Kelowna Rockets Saturday in Kelowna. Portland split a weekend series in Kamloops. The ‘Hawks won 2-1 in a shootout Friday, then lost Saturday's rematch with the Blazers 4-1.
Portland goalie Joel Hofer is among eight WHL players invited to Canada's world junior team selection camp in Oakville Ont., Dec. 9-12.
Tuesday's game marks the return of goalie Isaiah DiLaura, traded from the Cougars to the ‘Hawks in the off-season. In three games backing up Hofer, DiLaura has a 4.98 goals-against average and .859 save percentage.
Game time tonight is 7 p.m.