AHL Morning Skate: 6.3.17

Photo: Sam Iannamico

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

Game 2 – 7:00 ET – AHL Live free-view
(GR leads series, 1-0)

Grand Rapids and Syracuse are back at it tonight in Game 2 of the 2017 Calder Cup Finals… Tomas Nosek scored his second goal of the night with 13.9 seconds remaining to give the Griffins a 3-2 win in Game 1 last night… It was the fourth game-winning goal of the postseason for Nosek (9-7-16), who is now tied for the AHL lead with nine goals overall… The decisive goal came on the Griffins’ sixth power play of the contest after the Crunch were whistled for having too many men on the ice at 19:31 of the third; Syracuse had successfully killed off the first five advantages by the AHL’s top-ranked power play unit… Nosek opened the scoring 4:56 into the game, the fifth time this postseason that the Griffins grabbed a 1-0 lead within the first five minutes of a game… Grand Rapids captain Nathan Paetsch (2-3-5), playing in his 98th career Calder Cup Playoff game, scored his fifth career postseason goal… Tyler Bertuzzi (6-9-15) tallied two assists in Game 1, giving him 20-15-35 in 37 career AHL playoff games… Kevin Lynch (2-1-3) and Joel Vermin (6-2-8) scored for the Crunch… Lynch’s goal was Syracuse’s league-best fifth shorthanded marker of the postseason; the AHL record is seven, by Milwaukee in 2006… Cory Conacher (9-12-21) recorded an assist, his 11th point in the last four games and his league-leading 21st point overall… Jared Coreau (12-2, 2.38, .921) stopped 22 of 24 shots on the night for Grand Rapids, allowing two goals or fewer for the 10th time in 14 playoff starts… Mike McKenna (11-6, 2.54, .912) turned aside 33 shots in the loss, the fifth time in his last six starts making at least 33 stops… Grand Rapids is now 8-0 on home ice this postseason; Syracuse is 2-6 on the road… The Griffins improved to 4-0 in Game 1’s, but they are 1-2 in Game 2’s to date.

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 – Syracuse at Grand Rapids, 7:00
Game 3 – Wed., June 7 – Grand Rapids at Syracuse, 7:00
Game 4 – Fri., June 9 – Grand Rapids at Syracuse, 7:00
*Game 5 – Sat., June 10 – Grand Rapids at Syracuse, 7:00
*Game 6 – Tue., June 13 – Syracuse at Grand Rapids, 7:00
*Game 7 – Wed., June 14 – Syracuse at Grand Rapids, 7:00
*if necessary… All times Eastern

Reading List
Bertuzzi comes alive and so do Griffins in Calder Cup opener (Grand Rapids Press)
Crunch plays with fire all game, burns itself with late penalty (Syracuse.com)
Crunch newcomer impressive after stepping into Finals lineup (Syracuse.com)
Coreau’s resolve carries Griffins to Calder Cup Finals (Detroit News)
It’s time for Syracuse to finish and win another Calder Cup (Syracuse.com)

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.

Alumni Watch
In Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday night, 2016-17 AHL All-Rookie forward Jake Guentzel scored twice, including his second consecutive game-winning goal, as Pittsburgh grabbed a 2-0 series lead with a 4-1 win over Nashville… Scott Wilson also scored for the Penguins, and Matt Murray made 37 saves… Pontus Åberg, whose 31 goals with Milwaukee were tied for third in the AHL in 2016-17, scored for the Predators.

On This Date
June 3, 2016 – Oliver Bjorkstrand scores twice and Lake Erie grabs a 5-3 decision at Hershey to take a 2-0 lead in the Calder Cup Finals.

June 3, 2014 – Down 2-0 late in the second period of Game 7, Texas scores six goals in less than 18 minutes and defeats Toronto, 6-2, to advance to the Calder Cup Finals.

June 3, 2006Tomas Fleischmann records two goals and two assists and Mike Green tallies three assists in Hershey’s 6-3 win at Milwaukee in Game 2 of the Calder Cup Finals.

June 3, 2002 – Steve Maltais nets a hat trick and Yuri Butsayev scores 2:05 into the second overtime period as Chicago captures its first Calder Cup championship with a 4-3 win over Bridgeport.

June 3, 1998 – Peter White gets the game-winner at 2:54 of OT as Philadelphia beats the Saint John Flames, 4-3, in the third consecutive overtime game to begin the Calder Cup Finals.

Calder Cup Finals on AHL Live
The American Hockey League and NeuLion, Inc., are making video streaming of all seven games of the 2017 Calder Cup Finals available for viewing at no charge from AHL Live via desktop, laptop, mobile device or tablet… To watch free on AHL Live, simply visit ahllive.com from any desktop computer, log in with your AHL Live account (or create a new one), select the Finals All-Access Pass and enter the promo code FINALS17 to access all of the action of the AHL’s championship series featuring the calls of the Griffins’ Bob Kaser and the Crunch’s Dan D’Uva… You can watch on your desktop or laptop through ahllive.com, or download the official AHL Live app from iTunes or Google Play to watch on your mobile device or tablet.