AHL Morning Skate: 6.8.17

Photo: Eric Payne

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 4 – Friday, 7:00 ET – AHL Live free-view, SiriusXM 91
(GR leads series, 2-1)

Joel Vermin scored two goals in less than a minute late in the first period to put Syracuse ahead for good and the Crunch held on for a 5-3 win in Game 3 last night at the Onondaga County War Memorial Arena… Cory Conacher and Tye McGinn each tallied a goal and an assist as the Crunch improved to 10-0 on home ice this postseason… Tyler Bertuzzi notched a goal and an assist for Grand Rapids… The Griffins take a 2-1 series lead into Game 4 tomorrow night.

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 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

Perfect 10
Syracuse is just the third team in AHL history to win at least 10 consecutive home games in the same Calder Cup postseason:

11 – Philadelphia Phantoms, 2005
10 – Providence Bruins, 1999
10 – Syracuse Crunch, 2017
9 – Cape Breton Oilers, 1993
9 – Chicago Wolves, 2002
9 – Manchester Monarchs, 2015
9 – Grand Rapids Griffins, 2017

Century Club
Last night Grand Rapids captain Nathan Paetsch became the 18th player in AHL history with 100 career Calder Cup Playoff games played:

1. Bryan Helmer – 158
2. Chris Bourque – 133
3. Boyd Kane – 128
4. Ken Gernander – 123
5. Fred Glover – 120
T6. Maxime Fortunus – 118
T6. Alexandre Giroux – 118
8. Jody Gage – 115
T9. Les Duff – 112
T9. Willie Marshall – 112
T9. Mike Nykoluk – 112
12. Darren Haydar – 110
13. Glenn Merkosky – 107
T14. Terry Virtue – 106
T14. Dennis Bonvie – 106
16. Alain Nasreddine – 104
17. John Stevens – 102
18. Nathan Paetsch – 100

Reading List
Crunch bends but doesn’t break (Syracuse.com)
War Memorial crowd lifts Syracuse Crunch to Calder Cup Game 3 win (Syracuse.com)
Crunch loses captain Condra to lingering injury (Syracuse.com)
Crunch get first Finals win behind special teams success (TampaBayLightning.com)
Playing in Syracuse tough, but Griffins hurt more by poor special teams (Grand Rapids Press)
Crunch blitz Griffins early in Game 3 to get back in Finals (Grand Rapids Press)
Footie: A hockey ritual (FOX 17)
Thompson ready for the pressure of continuing Wolves’ winning ways (Chicago Sun-Times)

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 4 of the Stanley Cup Final on Monday night, Nashville defeated Pittsburgh, 4-1, to even the series at two games apiece… 2016 AHL All-Star Frederick Gaudreau became just the second player in NHL history to score each of his first three career goals during the Stanley Cup Final… Gaudreau (3), Jake Guentzel (4) and Pontus Åberg (1) have accounted for eight of the 24 goals scored during the Stanley Cup Final; that trio combined for 77 goals in the AHL in 2016-17… Gaudreau scored three game-winning goals in 66 AHL games with Milwaukee this season; he now has two GWG in the Stanley Cup Final… Twelve of Nashville’s 13 goals in the Final have been scored by Milwaukee Admirals alumni.

On This Date
June 8, 2014 – Scott Glennie and Travis Morin score two goals each to help Texas to a 6-3 win over St. John’s in Game 1 of the Calder Cup Finals.

June 8, 2013 – Petr Mrazek makes 28 saves as Grand Rapids opens the Calder Cup Finals with a 3-1 win at Syracuse in Game 1.

June 8, 2005 – Mike Richards and Patrick Sharp score to send Philadelphia to a 2-1 win over Chicago and a 3-0 series lead in the Calder Cup Finals.

June 8, 1996 – Andrew Brunette tallies a goal and an assist as Portland defeats Rochester, 5-4, to even the Calder Cup Finals at two games apiece.

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.