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The IceHogs of Rockford are approaching midseason. Well, not quite. The farmer boys will reach that milestone following this week’s home slate. However, the Hogs had a whole week off from game action and that gave me time to think.

As the Hogs only action this week was a victory in DesMoines Sunday, this is as good a time as any to offer some midseason thoughts on the team. The Blackhawks AHL affiliate, despite injuries and some pretty frequent roster movement, have remained near the top of the Western Conference.

Ready or not, here’s how the winds have blown down Rockford way.

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The Rockford IceHogs rebounded a bit in this week’s AHL action, winning two of three games and gaining a bit of ground on first place Milwaukee. With a .662 points percentage, the Hogs sit in second place in the Central Division as well as the AHL’s Western Conference.

This week saw a lot of movement in the roster, including a guy that was here but wasn’t here and a guy who was here but is now in Toronto. Let’s dig into this week’s transactions.

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It was a rough holiday stretch for the Rockford IceHogs. The Blackhawks AHL affiliate dropped three games this past week.

Goals were hard to come by, with Rockford finding twine just four times in the three losses. Two of those defeats came at the hands of Milwaukee, who supplanted the Hogs at the top of the Central Division. Rockford also dropped its first game to the Iowa Wild in just over a year.

All of a sudden, the IceHogs are on a four-game losing streak as they prepare to enter the new year. In addition, the Hogs lost the services of one of their leading scorers for a few games.

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The Rockford IceHogs have had their share of brawlers in the franchise’s eight-plus seasons as the Hawks AHL affiliate. As professional hockey has seen fighting on the decline, however, the Hogs have followed suit.

Jake Dowell took on Joel Edmundsen in Rockford’s loss to Chicago Saturday night. It was the 17th fighting major assessed to the IceHogs, who picked up three of four points this weekend to stay on top of the Central Division, in 28 games this season. It’s also the second-lowest total for this stage of a season for the franchise.

This got me to thinking; at its current pace, how would Rockford wind up compared to past seasons? Which IceHogs gloves have hit the ice most often? How often do the Hogs scrap, and how do they fare in games when they dance?

If these questions have been keeping you up at night, here’s some food for thought. If you detest fighting and don’t want to know about the dark side of the IceHogs, tough luck. You’ll have to close your eyes until you scroll to the recaps.

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The Rockford IceHogs, AHL affiliate of the Chicago Blackhawks, continue to play impressive hockey as we approach the holidays. The IceHogs completed a sweep of their four-game trip to Texas and split a weekend set with Iowa and Grand Rapids.

Rockford is on top of the Central Division standings with a 17-6-1-2 record. A loss to the Griffins Saturday put an end to a five-game winning streak, the longest of the season for the Hogs. Playing a big part in the success this team is veteran center Jake Dowell.

Relax, folks; Dowell is only on an AHL deal signed with the IceHogs this fall. He can’t be called up to the Hawks for you to disparage. This is not a plea for Stan Bowman to sign Dowell to NHL ink. Just know that the guy has been a key component of Rockford’s lofty position in the standings.

This weekend, the guy just got some terrific news to boot.

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The Rockford IceHogs opened this past week with a tough stretch of games in Texas ahead of them. With three of those four contests in the books, a four-game Lone Star sweep is within the reach of the IceHogs.

In what may be its most impressive stretch of the season, Rockford posted 15 goals in three victories. After winning a track meet against the Texas Stars Wednesday, the Hogs scored two wins over the San Antonio Rampage over the weekend. Rockford improved its season mark to 15-5-1-2 and sit at the top of the Central Division.

With several of last year’s leading scorers on the shelf, Rockford looked to be in need of some offensive punch against some good offensive teams.

Who provided a good portion of that punch? The above picture should spill the beans.

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Dang…I hate when Mom gives us all sweaters…

The Rockford IceHogs, the Blackhawks AHL affiliate, just finished up play for the month with a tough loss to the Milwaukee Admirals. The Hogs Central Division rival handed Rockford three losses in November. Three of the IceHogs top scorers were called up to Chicago this month and several more key players have succumbed to injury.

On paper, it reads like a month Rockford would like to forget. However, the Hogs finished November with a 7-2-1-1 mark and sit in third place in the division standings. How the heck did that happen?

Let’s take a look…

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The Rockford IceHogs, the Blackhawks AHL affiliate in Winnebago County, have found themselves in a pretty competitive Central Division so far in 2015-16. If the first two months of the season are any indication, finishing at the top of the eight-team division may be a tall order.

Rockford’s 10-4-1-2 record and .676 points percentage would be good enough for second or third in any of the AHL’s other three divisions. In the Central, however, the IceHogs mark is only good enough for fourth.

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The Rockford IceHogs, the Blackhawks affiliate in the American Hockey League, split a pair of games with Central Division opponents this weekend. The Hogs extended their point streak to eight games and are now 7-3-1-1 in 2015-16.

Rockford beat Grand Rapids on the road Friday night. They came back to Winnebago County the next evening and dropped an overtime decision to Milwaukee.

Also of note; the IceHogs added over 500 games of NHL experience to the lineup this week.

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The Rockford IceHogs, AHL affiliate of the Chicago Blackhawks, have struggled on the defensive end to start the 2015-16 season. Coach Ted Dent must have pushed the right buttons at practice prior to this past week’s action. The Hogs were stingier and have won three straight games because of it.

Rockford bested Centrals Division foes Iowa, Chicago and Milwaukee in Week 3 of the AHL schedule. The IceHogs are 4-3, good enough for fourth place in the eight-team division standings.

It was a big week for Rockford. As well as getting back above .500, the IceHogs made a move that should provide the veteran leadership a young team will need this season. It was also a big week for rookie center Tanner Kero.