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AHL Morning Skate: May 29

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

syr  wbs  
Game 3 – 7:05 ET, AHL Live (Series tied, 1-1)
The Eastern Conference Finals move 150 miles down Interstate 81 to the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza for tonight’s Game 3 between the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins and the Syracuse Crunch… The Crunch squared the series at a game apiece with a 3-2 win in Game 2 on Sunday night… By the 7:07 mark of the second period, Syracuse had a 2-0 lead on goals by Dan Sexton (3-3-6) and Matt Taormina (2-6-8), and was outshooting Wilkes-Barre by a 23-1 margin… A shorthanded goal by Dmitry Korobov (1-1-2) at 11:40 of the second stood up as the game-winner… It was the Crunch’s fifth shorthanded tally in nine postseason games; Syracuse scored nine times while down a man in 76 regular-season contests… Joey Mormina (1-7-8) and Riley Holzapfel (4-5-9) scored the Penguins’ goals in Game 2… Mormina, who had 1-1-2 in his first 53 career Calder Cup Playoff games, now has 1-7-8 in his last 10… Pens defenseman Alex Grant (2-2-4) has 2-1-3 in the series after totaling one assist through the first two rounds… Cedrick Desjardins (8-1, 2.24, .904) made 16 saves for the win as the Crunch finished with a 37-18 advantage in shots… Brad Thiessen (6-2, 1.27, .958) stopped 34 shots but saw his – and the Penguins’ – five-game winning streak come to an end… Wilkes-Barre was 1-for-5 on the power play in Game 2, and has scored at least one power-play goal in 11 of its 12 playoff games… Syracuse won three of its four regular-season visits to Wilkes-Barre, and is 3-0 on the road this postseason.

Eastern Conference Finals – Series “M”
3-Syracuse Crunch vs. 5-Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins
Game 1 – Sat., May 25 – W-B/Scranton 4, SYRACUSE 2
Game 2 – Sun., May 26 – SYRACUSE 3, W-B/Scranton 2
Game 3 – Wed., May 29 – Syracuse at W-B/Scranton, 7:05
Game 4 – Fri., May 31 – Syracuse at W-B/Scranton, 7:05
Game 5 – Sat., June 1 – W-B/Scranton at Syracuse, 7:00
*Game 6 – Mon., June 3 – Syracuse at W-B/Scranton, 7:05
*Game 7 – Wed., June 5 – W-B/Scranton at Syracuse, 7:00
   *if necessary… All times Eastern

gr  okc  
Game 3 – 8:00 ET, AHL Live (Series tied, 1-1)
Oklahoma City returns to the Cox Convention Center for Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals against Grand Rapids tonight after splitting the first two games back in Michigan… The Barons evened the series with a 4-2 win in Game 2 on Saturday night with Teemu Hartinkainen (6-8-14) pacing the offense with two goals and an assist… C.J. Stretch (5-4-9) and Mark Arcobello (10-7-17) also scored for Oklahoma City and Yann Danis (8-4, 2.16, .933) made 20 saves for his seventh win in the last nine games… Arcobello’s goal, which snapped a 2-2 tie with 12:15 left in regulation, was his league-leading 10th goal (all at even strength) and 17th point of the postseason… Tomas Tatar (9-4-13) and Mitch Callahan (2-2-4) scored for Grand Rapids on Saturday night… Petr Mrazek (8-5, 2.16, .912) faced 36 shots in the Game 2 loss and tied a personal season high with 33 saves… Every Grand Rapids loss this postseason has been followed by two consecutive wins… Tonight is the Barons’ first home game since last week’s deadly tornadoes struck the region; the American Hockey League and the PHPA have announced that all ticket revenue from tonight’s contest will be removed from the league revenue-sharing program and instead will be donated to the United Way’s OK Strong Disaster Relief Fund.

Western Conference Finals – Series “N” (best-of-7)
3-Grand Rapids Griffins vs. 5-Oklahoma City Barons

Game 1 – Fri., May 24 – GRAND RAPIDS 2, Oklahoma City 1
Game 2 – Sat., May 25 – Oklahoma City 4, GRAND RAPIDS 2
Game 3 – Wed., May 29 – Grand Rapids at Oklahoma City, 8:00
Game 4 – Fri., May 31 – Grand Rapids at Oklahoma City, 8:00
Game 5 – Sat., June 1 – Grand Rapids at Oklahoma City, 8:00
*Game 6 – Tue., June 4 – Oklahoma City at Grand Rapids, 7:00
*Game 7 – Wed., June 5 – Oklahoma City at Grand Rapids, 7:00
   *if necessary… All times Eastern

About Last Night…
The Los Angeles Kings advanced to the NHL’s Western Conference Finals with a 2-1 win over the San Jose Sharks at Staples Center last night… Jonathan Quick stopped 25 of 26 shots and two-time AHL All-Star Slava Voynov assisted on both Kings goals in the Game 7 victory… Dan Boyle, also a two-time All-Star during his days in the AHL, scored the only goal for San Jose… The Kings’ 20-man lineup featured nine former members of the Manchester Monarchs, including 2013 AHL Rookie of the Year Tyler Toffoli… Ten players in San Jose’s lineup were alumni of the Worcester Sharks.

Pivotal Game Three
Both conference final series hit Game 3 tonight tied at 1-1… In that situation all-time (best-of-sevens), the Game 3 winner goes on to win the series 70.9 percent of the time (129 of 182)… The last team to win a best-of-seven series after losing Game 3 when it was tied 1-1 was Binghamton in the 2011 Calder Cup Finals vs. Houston.

Road Warriors
AHL teams are 26-32 on the road this postseason, but all four conference finalists have winning records away from home:

1.000 – Syracuse (3-0)
.667 – Hershey (2-1)
.625 – W-B/Scranton (5-3)
.600 – Grand Rapids (3-2)
.600 – Providence (3-2)
.571 – Oklahoma City (4-3)
.500 – Toronto (2-2)
.500 – Charlotte (1-1)
.333 – Houston (1-2)
.250 – Springfield (1-3)
.200 – Texas (1-4)
.000 – Binghamton (0-1)
.000 – Manchester (0-2)
.000 – Milwaukee (0-2)
.000 – Portland (0-2)
.000 – Rochester (0-2)

On This Date
On May 29, 2008, the Chicago Wolves opened the Calder Cup Finals with a 5-4 win over the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins… On May 29, 2005, the Philadelphia Phantoms won the Eastern Conference championship with a 4-1 win over the Providence Bruins in Game 6… On May 29, 2004, Matt Murley’s overtime goal gave Wilkes-Barre/Scranton a 2-1 Game 7 win over the Hartford Wolf Pack and sent them to the Calder Cup Finals… On May 29, 1994, the first-year Portland Pirates won the Calder Cup with a 4-1 victory over the Moncton Hawks… On May 29, 1992, the Adirondack Red Wings defeated the St. John’s Maple Leafs, 5-2, to complete a seven-game Calder Cup Finals in which the road team won every game.

Eastern Conference Finals History

The Richard F. Canning Trophy is presented each season to the playoff champions of the AHL’s Eastern Conference… Either Syracuse or Wilkes-Barre/Scranton will be the 10th consecutive conference champion to come out of the East Division… Here are the results of the Eastern Conference Finals since the league split into two conferences in 1995-96:

2012 – Norfolk Admirals 4, St. John’s IceCaps 0
2011 – Binghamton Senators 4, Charlotte Checkers 0
2010 – Hershey Bears 4, Manchester Monarchs 2
2009 – Hershey Bears 4, Providence Bruins 1
2008 – W-B/Scranton Penguins 4, Portland Pirates 3
2007 – Hershey Bears 4, Manchester Monarchs 0
2006 – Hershey Bears 4, Portland Pirates 3
2005 – Philadelphia Phantoms 4, Providence Bruins 2
2004 – W-B/Scranton Penguins 4, Hartford Wolf Pack 3
2003 – Hamilton Bulldogs 4, Binghamton Senators 1
2002 – Bridgeport Sound Tigers 4, Hamilton Bulldogs 3
2001 – Saint John Flames 4, Providence Bruins 1
2000 – Hartford Wolf Pack 4, Providence Bruins 3
1999 – Providence Bruins 4, Fredericton Canadiens 2
1998 – Saint John Flames 4, Hartford Wolf Pack 1
*1997 – Hamilton Bulldogs 4, Albany River Rats 1
*1996 – Portland Pirates 4, Saint John Flames 3
  *known as Northern Conference

Western Conference Finals History
The Robert W. Clarke Trophy is presented each season to the playoff champions of the AHL’s Western Conference… Either Grand Rapids or Oklahoma City will be the eighth different conference champion in the last eight years… Here are the results of the Western Conference Finals since the league split into two conferences in 1995-96:

2012 – Toronto Marlies 4, Oklahoma City Barons 1
2011 – Houston Aeros 4, Hamilton Bulldogs 3
2010 – Texas Stars 4, Hamilton Bulldogs 3
2009 – Manitoba Moose 4, Houston Aeros 2
2008 – Chicago Wolves 4, Toronto Marlies 1
2007 – Hamilton Bulldogs 4, Chicago Wolves 1
2006 – Milwaukee Admirals 4, Grand Rapids Griffins 0
2005 – Chicago Wolves 4, Manitoba Moose 0
2004 – Milwaukee Admirals 4, Rochester Americans 1
2003 – Houston Aeros 4, Grand Rapids Griffins 3
2002 – Chicago Wolves 4, Houston Aeros 1
2001 – W-B/Scranton Penguins 4, Hershey Bears 0
2000 – Rochester Americans 4, Hershey Bears 0
1999 – Rochester Americans 4, Philadelphia Phantoms 2
1998 – Philadelphia Phantoms 4, Albany River Rats 2
*1997 – Hershey Bears 4, Springfield Falcons 3
*1996 – Rochester Americans 4, Syracuse Crunch 1
  *known as Southern Conference

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

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.