AHL Morning Skate: 6.14.17

Take a game-day spin around the AHL ice with latest news and notes from the 2017 Calder Cup Playoffs in today’s AHL Morning Skate.

Playoff Brackets | Today’s Scoreboard | League Stats

(GR wins series, 4-2)

The Grand Rapids Griffins won the 2017 Calder Cup championship with a 4-3 win over Syracuse in Game 6 of the Finals last night… Martin Frk scored the series-clinching goal with 7:19 left in regulation after the Griffins had rallied three times from one-goal deficits… Tomas Nosek recorded three assists in Game 6 and led all Grand Rapids scorers with 3-5-8 in the Finals… Yanni Gourde scored twice for the Crunch last night, becoming the first player with 10 points in a Calder Cup Finals since Chicago’s Jason Krog in 2008… Jared Coreau (15-4) made 29 saves in the win; Mike McKenna (13-9) stopped 22 shots in defeat… Grand Rapids was 1-for-4 on the power play in Game 6; the Griffins were 5-for-15 at home during the Finals, and 0-for-16 on the road… Syracuse was 4-for-32 in the Finals, including 1-for-20 to end the series.

Grand Rapids is the first team to win multiple Calder Cups during the 2010’s… Three Griffins — Mitch Callahan, Brian Lashoff and captain Nathan Paetsch — were members of both the 2013 and 2017 Griffins title teams… Todd Nelson joins Bob Woods and Mike Stothers as the only people to win Calder Cups as a player, as an assistant coach and as a head coach… Syracuse’s Cory Conacher led the AHL in goals (12) and points (28) during the playoffs; Crunch teammate Yanni Gourde was first in assists (18) and second in points (27)… Tomas Nosek led Grand Rapids in playoff scoring with 10-12-22… The Griffins were a perfect 10-0 at home in the playoffs, including three wins when trailing after 40 minutes… Before this season, Providence (1999) and Philadelphia (2005) were the only teams with 10-game home winning streaks in a single postseason; both Grand Rapids and Syracuse accomplished that feat in 2017… The Crunch finished 11-1 at home but 2-8 on the road, the most road losses ever by a playoff team… Eight of Syracuse’s nine postseason losses were by a single goal… Game 6 was the only game of the Finals in which the team scoring first did not win… There has still not been a Calder Cup Finals series to go seven games since 2003 (Houston vs. Hamilton).

2017 Calder Cup Finals – Series “O” (best-of-7)
Grand Rapids Griffins vs. Syracuse Crunch | Finals Infographic
Game 1 – Fri., June 2 – GRAND RAPIDS 3, Syracuse 2 | Recap/Highlights
Game 2 – Sat., June 3 – GRAND RAPIDS 6, Syracuse 5 (2OT) | Recap/Highlights
Game 3 – Wed., June 7 – SYRACUSE 5, Grand Rapids 3 | Recap/Highlights
Game 4 – Fri., June 9 – Grand Rapids 3, SYRACUSE 2 | Recap/Highlights
Game 5 – Sat., June 10 – SYRACUSE 5, Grand Rapids 1 | Recap/Highlights
Game 6 – Tue., June 13 – GRAND RAPIDS 4, Syracuse 3 | Recap/Highlights

Reading List
Nerve-racking countdown to Griffins unforgettable Calder Cup celebration (MLive.com)
Nelson solidifies his place as one of Griffins’ all-time greats (MLive.com)
Frk’s memorable title-clincher for Griffins wasn’t exactly to plan (MLive.com)
Legacy of the 2017 Crunch: disappointment now, but years of good memories (Syracuse.com)
With or without the Calder Cup, 2017 Syracuse Crunch will not soon be forgotten (Syracuse.com)
Dean is promoted to Boston Bruins coaching staff (Providence Journal)

Calder Cup Finals History (1992-2017)
2017 – Grand Rapids Griffins 4, Syracuse Crunch 2
2016 – Lake Erie Monsters 4, Hershey Bears 0
2015 – Manchester Monarchs 4, Utica Comets 1
2014 – Texas Stars 4, St. John’s IceCaps 1
2013 – Grand Rapids Griffins 4, Syracuse Crunch 2
2012 – Norfolk Admirals 4, Toronto Marlies 0
2011 – Binghamton Senators 4, Houston Aeros 2
2010 – Hershey Bears 4, Texas Stars 2
2009 – Hershey Bears 4, Manitoba Moose 2
2008 – Chicago Wolves 4, W-B/Scranton Penguins 2
2007 – Hamilton Bulldogs 4, Hershey Bears 1
2006 – Hershey Bears 4, Milwaukee Admirals 2
2005 – Philadelphia Phantoms 4, Chicago Wolves 0
2004 – Milwaukee Admirals 4, W-B/Scranton Penguins 0
2003 – Houston Aeros 4, Hamilton Bulldogs 3
2002 – Chicago Wolves 4, Bridgeport Sound Tigers 1
2001 – Saint John Flames 4, W-B/Scranton Penguins 2
2000 – Hartford Wolf Pack 4, Rochester Americans 2
1999 – Providence Bruins 4, Rochester Americans 1
1998 – Philadelphia Phantoms 4, Saint John Flames 2
1997 – Hershey Bears 4, Hamilton Bulldogs 1
1996 – Rochester Americans 4, Portland Pirates 3
1995 – Albany River Rats 4, Fredericton Canadiens 0
1994 – Portland Pirates 4, Moncton Hawks 2
1993 – Cape Breton Oilers 4, Rochester Americans 1
1992 – Adirondack Red Wings 4, St. John’s Maple Leafs 3

About the Calder Cup
The Calder Cup is named for Frank Calder, the first president of the NHL (1917-43) and one of the driving forces behind the formation of the American Hockey League.

While the AHL’s history dates back to the fall of 1936, the Calder Cup trophy was first awarded in 1938 to the Providence Reds for winning the second International-American Hockey League championship. (In 1996, George Parsons of the Syracuse Stars was presented the Calder Cup in a ceremony at the Onondaga County War Memorial; it is believed the Stars never received a trophy for their 1937 championship.)

In 2001, the trophy’s base was changed to include two tiers of plaques, which feature the rosters of each of the last 20 Calder Cup champions; the plaques from the first 60 champions are on display in the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. The entire trophy now stands 24 inches tall and weighs 28 pounds. The bowl, made of sterling silver, is 12 inches high and eight inches in diameter; the base is made of Brazilian mahogany.

On This Date
June 14, 2013 – Brett Connolly, Ondrej Palat and Richard Panik score as Syracuse avoids being swept in the Calder Cup Finals with a 3-2 win in Game 4 at Grand Rapids.

June 14, 2010 – John Carlson and Karl Alzner score and Michal Neuvirth makes 22 saves as Hershey beats Texas, 4-0, to follow its 60-win regular season with its second consecutive Calder Cup.

82nd Season Begins Oct. 6
Grand Rapids’ defense of its Calder Cup championship when the 2017-18 American Hockey League regular season begins in 114 days… New entries in the league next season include the Belleville Senators (Ottawa), the Binghamton Devils (New Jersey) and the Laval Rocket (Montreal).