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An Island Perspective with Dan Marshall


Out of the Gate

If it’s possible to set a tone for a season in the first few games, then September’s scheduling is critical. With the expected parity in the Island Division, whichever team has the best start could ride that wave for a while.

Alberni Valley has seven games in the month of September including four at home. They have one three game weekend and play four divisional games.

There are five games on the home schedule for Cowichan Valley this month. The Caps have seven games overall, four in the division and no three game weekends.

In Nanaimo it’s a very light start with only four games in the first three weeks. Bill Bestwick’s team has seven games in September and six are in the division. There is one three game weekend and five of the games are at the Frank Crane Arena.

The Victoria Grizzlies have the most games with nine this month. That includes the first five in a row on the road. Six are within the division and there is one three game weekend.

Looking at those schedules Nanaimo and Cowichan seem to have the easiest time. Victoria appears to be at a disadvantage with so many games and Alberni Valley has a pretty average looking sked.

With all the home games the Clippers and Capitals have they should take the most points but also have the most to lose. If they don’t play well this month they could be behind the eight ball.

On another note, the playoff format has been decided. Commissioner Grisdale told me the top teams in the Mainland and Island Divisions will get a first round playoff bye. That means seeds two and three will each other in the opening round, barring a crossover scenario where the lowest ranked team in one division is higher than the third best team in the other. The bottom line is six of the eight teams in the Coastal and Interior Conferences will make the playoffs and four teams will get a first round bye. Yes, I’ve already referenced the playoffs and it’s only September!