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AHL Morning Skate: May 22

May 22, 2013


Take a game-day spin around the AHL ice with latest from around the American Hockey League in today's Morning Skate.

Complete Schedule || Playoff Brackets || Today's Scoreboard || League Leaders || Series Previews

Tonight's Previews

wbs  pro
Game 7 - 7:05 ET, AHL Live (Series tied, 3-3)
The conference semifinal series which seemed destined to be over first will take the final bow of the second round as regular-season champion Providence hosts the fifth seed in the East, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, in a winner-take-all Game 7 tonight... The Bruins' 3-0 series lead has been erased by three consecutive Penguins wins, most recently Monday's 2-1 overtime decision, as Wilkes-Barre has become the fourth team in AHL history to force a seventh game of a series after losing the first three... Trevor Smith (3-6-9), a Calder Cup champion and AHL's co-leader in playoff scoring with Norfolk in 2012, assisted on the game-tying goal by Brian Dumoulin (2-4-6) in the second period of Game 6 before notching his first career playoff OT goal just 3:26 into extra time... Brad Thiessen (4-1, 1.05, .964) made 46 saves as the Penguins were outshot 47-18 for the game, including 44-8 over the final 52 minutes of regulation... Thiessen has stopped 143 of 147 shots in the series (0.85, .973) since taking over in the second period of Game 2... Craig Cunningham (3-5-8) scored the Bruins' only goal in Game 6... Chris Bourque (5-9-14), who was credited with a game-high nine shots on goal, picked up an assist for his first point in four games... Bourque has skated in two career winner-take-all games, both against Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (with Hershey); he had an assist in a Game 5 loss last year, and scored a goal in a Game 7 victory in 2009... Niklas Svedberg (6-5, 3.12, .895), who did not lose back-to-back decisions all season until Games 1 and 2 of the conference quarterfinals vs. Hershey, enters Game 7 on a three-game losing skid after stopping 16 shots on Monday... The Penguins were 1-for-5 on the power play in Game 6 and are 9-for-31 (29.0 percent) in the series... The Bruins, 0-for-3 on Monday, are on an 0-for-16 slide since starting the series 4-for-8... Wilkes-Barre forward Warren Peters (3-0-3), a member of the 2011 Houston Aeros team that coughed up a 3-0 series lead to Hamilton before winning Game 7, is 4-0 in his AHL career in Game 7's... The Bruins, who went the distance in their first-round series with Hershey, are the first regular-season champion since the 2003 Hamilton Bulldogs to be pushed to two winner-take-all games... Both teams are 3-0 this postseason when facing elimination... Providence has lost three straight games for the first time since Oct. 26 to Nov. 2, 2012... This is the first Game 7 ever at the Dunkin' Donuts Center... The lower seed has won each of the other three conference semifinal series already... The winner of this game will face Syracuse in the Eastern Conference Finals beginning Saturday.

Eastern Conference Semifinal – Series “I” (best-of-7)
1-Providence Bruins vs. 5-Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins
Game 1 – Fri., May 10 – PROVIDENCE 8, W-B/Scranton 5
Game 2 – Sat., May 11 – PROVIDENCE 4, W-B/Scranton 2
Game 3 – Wed., May 15 – Providence 2, W-B/SCRANTON 1 (OT)
Game 4 – Fri., May 17 – W-B/SCRANTON 3, Providence 1
Game 5 – Sat., May 18 – W-B/SCRANTON 4, Providence 0
Game 6 – Mon., May 20 – W-B/Scranton 2, PROVIDENCE 1 (OT)
Game 7 – Wed., May 22 – W-B/Scranton at Providence, 7:05 ET

About Last Night...
Down by two with less than 10 minutes remaining in Game 6, Grand Rapids came from behind and defeated Toronto, 4-3, to advance to the Western Conference Finals for the first time since 2006... The Griffins will face Oklahoma City beginning Friday for the right to play for the Calder Cup... Jan Mursak and Tomas Tatar scored 28 seconds apart midway through the third period to tie the game at 3-3, and East Grand Rapids, Mich., native Luke Glendening banged home what would be the winning goal with 4:03 to play... Tatar scored twice in a series-clinching game for the second consecutive round; he had two goals and an assist vs. Houston on May 4... Carter Ashton, Paul Ranger and Will Acton scored for the Marlies, who were outshot in each of their nine playoff games... The third-seeded Griffins will have home-ice advantage against the fifth-seeded Barons in the conference finals... In Stanley Cup Playoff action last night, former Rochester Americans forward Daniel Paille scored the game-winning goal and added an assist in Boston's 2-1 win over the New York Rangers... 2010 AHL All-Rookie selection Logan Couture scored his third game-winner of this postseason to help San Jose to a 2-1 win over Los Angeles.

Game 7 Histories
There have been 85 Game 7's played in AHL history... Home teams are 46-39 (.541), but road teams have an 8-5 edge since 2009... Since 1992, teams are 44-12 in Game 7's when scoring the first goal... Eleven Game 7's in history have gone to overtime... The last postseason without a single Game 7 was 1990... Providence is appearing in its fifth Game 7 all-time (first since 2007); tonight is Wilkes-Barre's seventh Game 7.

Providence Bruins (3-1)

Apr. 29, 2007 - Providence 5, HARTFORD 4
May 1, 2001 - Providence 3, WORCESTER 2 (OT)
May 21, 2000 - HARTFORD 3, Providence 2 (OT)
Apr. 26, 1995 - Providence 6, PORTLAND 3

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (4-2)
May 12, 2012 - ST. JOHN'S 3, W-B/Scranton 2
May 12, 2009 - HERSHEY 3, W-B/Scranton 0
May 24, 2008 - W-B/SCRANTON 3, Portland 2
Apr. 29, 2006 - W-B/SCRANTON 5, Bridgeport 4
May 29, 2004 - W-B/Scranton 2, HARTFORD 1 (OT)
Apr. 25, 2004 - W-B/Scranton 3, BRIDGEPORT 2 (OT)

It's Been Done Before
The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins are trying to join the 1960 Rochester Americans (vs. Cleveland) and the 1989 Adirondack Red Wings (vs. Hershey) as the only teams in AHL history to win a best-of-seven Calder Cup Playoff series after losing the first three games... The Amerks and Red Wings had the luxury of playing Game 7 at home... Only one team in AHL history -- the 2011 Hamilton Bulldogs (vs. Houston) -- has lost a Game 7 after rallying to tie the series from an 0-3 deficit.

1960 Semifinals
Game 1 – Cleveland 2, ROCHESTER 0
Game 2 – Cleveland 2, ROCHESTER 1
Game 3 – CLEVELAND 7, Rochester 5
Game 4 – Rochcester 5, CLEVELAND 3
Game 5 – ROCHESTER 4, Cleveland 1
Game 6 – Rochester 5, CLEVELAND 3
Game 7 – ROCHESTER 4, Cleveland 1

1989 Southern Division Finals
Game 1 – Hershey 4, ADIRONDACK 3
Game 2 – Hershey 5, ADIRONDACK 3
Game 3 – HERSHEY 1, Adirondack 0
Game 4 – Adirondack 6, HERSHEY 3
Game 5 – ADIRONDACK 3, Hershey 2 (OT)
Game 6 – Adirondack 4, HERSHEY 2
Game 7 – ADIRONDACK 2, Hershey 1 (OT)

The 3-1 Hole
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton is also trying to join 17 other teams in AHL history who have come back to win a best-of-seven series after trailing 3-1... The Penguins (2004 vs. Bridgeport) are already on the list once:

2011 - Manitoba Moose def. Lake Erie Monsters
2011 - Binghamton Senators def. Manchester Monarchs
2010 - Abbotsford Heat def. Rochester Americans
2008 - Toronto Marlies def. Syracuse Crunch
2005 - Cincinnati Mighty Ducks def. Milwaukee Admirals
2004 - Rochester Americans def. Syracuse Crunch
2004 - Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins def. Bridgeport Sound Tigers
2000 - Hartford Wolf Pack def. Providence Bruins
1997 - Hershey Bears def. Springfield Falcons
1992 - Rochester Americans def. Binghamton Rangers
1991 - Springfield Indians def. Fredericton Canadiens
1989 - Adirondack Red Wings def. Hershey Bears (trailed 3-0)
1973 - Virginia Wings def. Hershey Bears
1960 - Rochester Americans def. Cleveland Barons (trailed 3-0)
1949 - Providence Reds def. Hershey Bears
1947 - Hershey Bears def. Pittsburgh Hornets
1946 - Buffalo Bisons def. Cleveland Barons

Road Work
Winning Games 6 and 7 of a series both on the road is also a rare feat in the Calder Cup Playoffs, accomplished only seven times:

2011 - Manitoba Moose def. Lake Erie Monsters
2011 - Binghamton Senators def. Manchester Monarchs
2010 - Texas Stars def. Hamilton Bulldogs
2010 - Abbotsford Heat def. Rochester Americans
2007 - Providence Bruins def. Hartford Wolf Pack
1996 - Portland Pirates def. Saint John Flames
1983 - Maine Mariners def. Nova Scotia Voyageurs

Top Seeds
Since 1998, 11 of the AHL's 15 regular-season champions have made it to the conference finals, with only Worcester (2001), Rochester (2005), Providence (2008) and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (2011) failing to get past the second round... Ten of those teams eventually reached the Calder Cup Finals, and six of them won the Calder Cup.

2013 - Providence Bruins (?)
2012 - Norfolk Admirals (won Calder Cup)
2011 - Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (lost second round)
2010 - Hershey Bears (won Calder Cup)
2009 - Manitoba Moose (lost Finals)
2008 - Providence Bruins (lost second round)
2007 - Hershey Bears (lost Finals)
2006 - Grand Rapids Griffins (lost conference finals)
2005 - Rochester Americans (lost second round)
2004 - Milwaukee Admirals (won Calder Cup)
2003 - Hamilton Bulldogs (lost Finals)
2002 - Bridgeport Sound Tigers (lost Finals)
2001 - Worcester IceCats (lost second round)
2000 - Hartford Wolf Pack (won Calder Cup)
1999 - Providence Bruins (won Calder Cup)
1998 - Philadelphia Phantoms (won Calder Cup)

Working Overtime

There have been 13 overtime games played in the 2013 Calder Cup Playoffs so far... Road teams are 10-3:

Apr. 26 - Texas 3, MILWAUKEE 2 (Brett Ritchie, 11:44)
Apr. 26 - Charlotte 4, OKLAHOMA CITY 3 (Brody Sutter, 3:06)
Apr. 27 - SPRINGFIELD 2, Manchester 1 (Cody Bass, 10:36)
Apr. 27 - W-B/Scranton 3, BINGHAMTON 2 (Chad Kolarik, 8:18)
Apr. 27 - SYRACUSE 4, Portland 3 (Richard Panik, 6:36)
Apr. 28 - Hershey 5, PROVIDENCE 4 (Jon DiSalvatore, 3:05)
Apr. 28 - SPRINGFIELD 3, Manchester 2 (Cody Bass, 18:44)
*May 1 - Toronto 3, ROCHESTER 2 (Will Acton, 5:14)
*May 2 - Syracuse 4, PORTLAND 3 (Ondrej Palat, 19:43)
*May 4 - Springfield 4, MANCHESTER 3 (Nick Drazenovic, 8:06)
May 9 - Oklahoma City 2, TEXAS 1 (Anton Lander, 1:28)
May 15 - Providence 2, W-B/SCRANTON 1 (Carter Camper, 0:31)
May 20 - W-B/Scranton 2, PROVIDENCE 1 (Trevor Smith, 3:26)
  *indicates goal ended series

Helping Hands
The American Hockey League has made a donation to the American Red Cross to help our neighbors in Barons Country after this week's devastating tornadoes in the Oklahoma City area. Visit redcross.org to find out how you can help also.

AHL Live
Don't miss a second on the road to the 2013 Calder Cup championship. AHL Live brings AHL action to your computer all season long with live video webcasts and highlights of every AHL game, as well as behind-the-scenes features and interviews in the Video On Demand section... Visit ahllive.com for details.