Defenseman Rich Brennan scored on a two-man advantage with 4:35 left and Mike Pudlick and Francois Methot added goals as the Augsburger Panther
came from behind to beat Grizzly Adams Wolfsburg
4-1 (0-0, 1-1, 3-0) on the road.
The loss not only eliminated expansion team Wolfsburg from playoff contention. At 54 points, Wolfsburg is in the thick of the relegation battle with the Hannover Scorpions (54) and Kassel Huskies (50), who both recorded big wins. At the end of the regular season, the two last place teams in the standings will face each other in a best-of-seven series - the so-called "DEL Playdowns" - with the loser being relegated to Division-2.
The firing of head coach Dave King appeared to have little effect on the slumping Hamburg Freezers
. With Mike Schmidt making his debut behind the bench, the Freezers failed to capitalize on an early 1-0 lead and fell to the Hannover Scorpions
, 5-2 (3-1, 0-0, 2-1). Andreas Morczinietz's goal at 19:12 of the opening period went down as the game-winner for the hosts.
With three games to go, four teams are still alive in the battle for the two remaining playoff spots: Hamburg (71), Krefeld (68), Augsburg (67) and Düsseldorf (65).
The Iserlohn Roosters'
(60) playoff hopes are only mathematical after a 6-3 (4-1, 1-1, 1-1) home loss to the Berlin Eisbären
. Denis Pederson recorded a hat trick and Kelly Fairchild had a pair of goals for Berlin.
Brian Swanson led the way with three goals and two assists as the Kassel Huskies
snapped their franchise-long nine-game losing streak with a 6-3 (1-1, 2-1, 3-1) home win over the DEG Metro Stars
The fifth-place Kölner Haie
revived their hopes for home-ice advantage in the first round of the DEL playoffs. The Haie trail fourth-place ERC Ingolstadt, which was idle Friday, by only two points after a 4-2 (2-1, 0-0, 2-1) home victory over the Mannheim Adler
. Jean-Yves Roy tallied a pair of goals for the Haie.
Doug Weight notched his second game-winner in four games. He scored on the power-play with 4:29 remaining and Jason Young added an empty-netter to lift the first-place Frankfurt Lions
to their fifth-straight win, 5-3 (1-1, 1-1, 3-1) over the visiting Nürnberg Ice Tigers