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AHL Morning Skate: May 3

May 3, 2013

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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

hou  gr
Game 4 - 7:00 ET, AHL Live (GR leads series, 2-1)
Adam Almquist (1-0-1) scored the go-ahead goal with 3:38 left in regulation on Wednesday night to send Grand Rapids to a 4-2 win over Houston, giving the Griffins a 2-1 lead in the series and a chance to close it out in Game 4 tonight... Jeff Hoggan (1-0-1), Teemu Pulkkinen (1-0-1) and Luke Glendening (1-1-2) also found the net for the Griffins; it was the first goal of the series for all four scorers... Petr Mrazek (2-1, 2.02, .922) made 25 saves for his second straight win... Erik Haula (1-1-2) -- his first as a professional -- and David McIntyre (1-1-2) scored for the Aeros... After Darcy Kuemper was recalled by the parent Minnesota Wild, the Game 3 start went to Mike Condon, who finished his senior season at Princeton University in March; Condon stopped 35 of 38 shots... The Griffins are 5-6 in their AHL history with a chance to close out a series; the Aeros are 11-8 when facing elimination... After going a combined 4-for-45 (8.9 percent) on the power play in six regular-season meetings, the clubs are 4-for-21 in the series (19.0 percent).

Western Conference Quarterfinals – Series “G” (best-of-5)
3-Grand Rapids Griffins vs. 6-Houston Aeros
Game 1 – Fri., Apr. 26 – HOUSTON 3, Grand Rapids 0 | Recap
Game 2 – Sun., Apr. 28 – Grand Rapids 3, HOUSTON 2 | Recap
Game 3 – Wed., May 1 – GRAND RAPIDS 4, Houston 2 | Recap
Game 4 – Fri., May 3 – Houston at Grand Rapids, 7:00
*Game 5 – Sat., May 4 – Houston at Grand Rapids, 7:00
   *if necessary... All times Eastern


okc  cha
Game 4 - 7:00 ET, AHL Live (CHA leads series, 2-1)
A convincing 6-1 win over Oklahoma City in Game 3 puts Charlotte one victory away from a trip to the second round... The Checkers scored three times in the first 8:18 of the game on Wednesday, including two power-play goals by Chris Terry (2-2-4) 88 seconds apart... Matt Marquardt (1-1-2), Tim Wallace (1-1-2), Bobby Raymond (1-2-3) and Justin Shugg (2-0-2) also scored for Charlotte in the win, while Zach Boychuk (2-3-5) notched three assists... Rookie Rob Madore (2-1, 2.63, .921) made 37 saves, the seventh time in his 11 AHL starts that he has faced at least 35 shots in a game; he is 6-1 in those contests... The Checkers finished the night 3-for-7 on the power play and are now 5-for-15 (33.3 percent) in the series against the Barons, who ranked 30th in the league on the penalty kill in the regular season... Oklahoma City, which ranked first on the power play in 2012-13, is 2-for-17 in the series (11.8 percent)... Toni Rajala (1-3-4) scored the Barons' only goal in Game 3.

Western Conference Quarterfinals – Series “H” (best-of-5)
4-Charlotte Checkers vs. 5-Oklahoma City Barons
Game 1 – Fri., Apr. 26 – Charlotte 4, OKLAHOMA CITY 3 (OT) | Recap
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 27 – OKLAHOMA CITY 5, Charlotte 2 | Recap
Game 3 – Wed., May 1 – CHARLOTTE 6, Oklahoma City 1 | Recap
Game 4 – Fri., May 3 – Oklahoma City at Charlotte, 7:00
*Game 5 – Sat., May 4 – Oklahoma City at Charlotte, 7:00
   *if necessary... All times Eastern


mil  tex
Game 3 - 8:30 ET, AHL Live (TEX leads series, 2-1)
Cristopher Nilstorp answered Magnus Hellberg's Game 2 shutout with one of his own on Wednesday night, making 21 saves as Texas grabbed a 2-1 series lead with a 2-0 win over Milwaukee... Making his playoff debut, Alex Chiasson (1-0-1) broke a scoreless tie with 12:18 left in the third period, the first goal allowed by Hellberg (1-2, 1.58, .949) in 107:42 since Brett Ritchie's overtime winner in Game 1... Kevin Connauton (2-1-3), now the leading scorer in the series, scored a power-play goal with 6:03 remaining to give Texas a two-goal cushion... Nilstorp (2-1, 0.94, .958) earned the first playoff shutout in Stars history...Including their two regular-season meetings this season, the Stars and Admirals have combined to score just 16 goals in five games... Texas also had a 2-1 series lead in these teams' 2011 first-round meeting; the Admirals came back to win that best-of-seven series in six... Milwaukee is 9-9 all-time when facing Calder Cup Playoff elimination.

Western Conference Quarterfinals – Series “E” (best-of-5)
1-Texas Stars vs. 8-Milwaukee Admirals

Game 1 – Fri., Apr. 26 – Texas 3, MILWAUKEE 2 (OT) | Recap
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 27 – MILWAUKEE 2, Texas 0 | Recap
Game 3 – Wed., May 1 – TEXAS 2, Milwaukee 0 | Recap
Game 4 – Fri., May 3 – Milwaukee at Texas, 8:30
*Game 5 – Sat., May 4 – Milwaukee at Texas, 8:00
   *if necessary... All times Eastern


About Last Night...
Ondrej Palat scored with 1:12 left in regulation and again with 16.2 seconds left in the first overtime period to give the Syracuse Crunch a 4-3 win over Portland and a three-game sweep of the Pirates... The Crunch came back from 3-1 deficits in both Game 1 and Game 3... Riley Holzapfel's goal with 1:18 to go in regulation snapped a 1-1 tie and the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins finished off a sweep of Binghamton with a 3-2 victory... The Penguins have won seven straight postseason games from the Senators going back to 2005... Martin Jones made 32 saves and Nick Deslauriers and David Meckler scored power-play goals as Manchester edged Springfield, 2-1, to extend their series to a fourth game on Saturday... It was the first win ever by the Monarchs when facing playoff elimination (1-10)... Over in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, 2012-13 First Team AHL All-Star Gustav Nyquist scored the winning goal in Detroit's 5-4 overtime victory over Anaheim.

Baby Bolts Battle On
The AHL affiliate of the Tampa Bay Lightning has won its last 13 Calder Cup Playoff games, including three consecutive series sweeps:

2012 ECSF Game 5 - Norfolk 4, Connecticut 0
2012 ECSF Game 6 - Norfolk 2, Conencticut 1 (OT)
2012 ECF Game 1 - Norfolk 6, St. John's 1
2012 ECF Game 2 - Norfolk 3, St. John's 1
2012 ECF Game 3 - Norfolk 1, St. John's 0 (OT)
2012 ECF Game 4 - Norfolk 4, St. John's 0
2012 CCF Game 1 - Norfolk 3, Toronto 1
2012 CCF Game 2 - Norfolk 4, Toronto 2
2012 CCF Game 3 - Norfolk 1, Toronto 0 (OT)
2012 CCF Game 4 - Norfolk 6, Toronto 1
2013 ECQF Game 1 - Syracuse 4, Portland 3 (OT)
2013 ECQF Game 2 - Syracuse 4, Portland 2
2013 ECQF Game 3 - Syracuse 4, Portland 3 (OT)

0-2 Comebacks
Entering this postseason, 70 of the 79 teams to take a 2-0 lead in a best-of-five Calder Cup Playoff series have gone on to win the series. The nine who came back:

2002, St. John's Maple Leafs def. Lowell Lock Monsters
2001, Providence Bruins def. Hartford Wolf Pack
1997, Springfield Falcons def. Portland Pirates
1997, Providence Bruins def. Worcester IceCats
1969, Quebec Aces def. Cleveland Barons
1967, Rochester Americans def. Cleveland Barons (lost first two at home)
1965, Hershey Bears def. Baltimore Clippers
1954, Hershey Bears def. Pittsburgh Hornets (lost first two at home)
1952, Providence Reds def. Cleveland Barons

Working Overtime
Nine of the first 23 games played this postseason have required overtime:

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)

Second-Round Scenarios
Brackets are re-drawn after the first round so that the highest remaining seed plays the lowest remaining seed and the two middle seeds play each other in each conference's semifinals... Toronto, Syracuse and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton are into the second round, but their opponents are still to be determined:

Toronto - will play Grand Rapids, Charlotte, Oklahoma City or Milwaukee
Syracuse - will play Springfield, W-B/Scranton or Hershey
W-B/Scranton - will play Providence, Syracuse or Manchester

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.

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