Tonight the Chicago Riot take on the Missouri Comets at the Odeum in Villa Park, IL at 7:00 PM CST. Is there another big game going on? I wouldn't know. The Chicago Bulls and Chicago Blackhawks play tomorrow night, the Chicago White Sox, Chicago Cubs, and Chicago Fire are all dangerously close to starting pre-season and I know that the Chicago Bears are out so it's just the Riot as far as I know. If there is another big game to watch, I'm sure you can check it out upstairs at the Odeum Bar before the game, at halftime and after the game. Tickets are half-price if you wear a soccer jersey or a Bears jersey.
Follow me after the break for a preview of tonight's game action.
The Riot and the Comets are in a battle for last place with Chicago being the team looking to gain ground. Missouri is a surprising 3-3 on the road so there's not going to be any advantage there. Comets forward Leo Gibson is a long distance assassin with 4 three point goals to his name so Riot defenders and goalkeepers will have to be extra vigilant when he has the ball behind the line. Gibson's partners in crime include Byron Alvarez and and Jamar Beasley who are No. 1 and No. 5 in the league in overall points. Riot head coach Jeff Kraft will have a tough decision on his hand as original starting goaltender Jeff Richey's hamstring has healed to the point that he is listed as 'probable'. Ante Cop has been a decent option in goal and has a 1-4 record to his credit while Jeff Richey is staring at 1-5. In my opinion it's a toss-up on who starts.
The overall match-up of Chicago vs. Missouri is another toss-up with the season series tied at 1-1. Chicago won the first game 14-13 on December 19 and Missouri returned the favor by winning 13-11 in overtime on January 7. Riot forward Anthony Maher returns to action after missing last weekend's 15-10 loss to Baltimore due to personal reasons. Maher has been dynamite when he has played this year and he also missed the previous games against the Comets. I think Maher will provide the difference as the best core the Riot has shown all season in Maher, Fred Degand, Bato Radoncic, Ptah Myers, Will Kletzien, Robert Gallo, Semir Mesanovic, Novica Marojevic, Eric Lukin, and others team up for a Super victory over the Comets - 16-13.