AHL Morning Skate: April 26

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

Complete Schedule || Playoff Brackets || Today’s Scoreboard || League Leaders

Tonight’s Previews

Game 2 – 3:00 ET, AHL Live (TOR leads series, 1-0)
@GriffinsHockey | @TorontoMarlies | #GRvsTOR

Toronto continued the momentum from its seven-game winning streak to end the regular season and grabbed the 1-0 series lead with a 7-4 victory over Grand Rapids yesterday afternoon… The teams go right back at it today with the seventh-seeded Marlies looking to go up two games before the series shifts to West Michigan for the duration… Seven different Marlies scored goals in Game 1, with Byron Froese‘s goal with time running out in the second period giving Toronto the lead for good… Josh Leivo finished with a goal and three assists for the Marlies, who also got goals from T.J. Brennan, Greg McKegg, Ryan Rupert, Brendan Leipsic and Jake RodewaldConnor Brown, the AHL’s rookie scoring leader in 2014-15, had two assists in the win… Teemu Pulkkinen, in his first game back with the Griffins after returning from the parent Detroit Red Wings, scored twice, giving him 25 goals in his last 22 AHL games… Grand Rapids had not allowed seven goals in a game all season until a 7-3 loss to Charlotte on Apr. 18; they have now done so in consecutive games… The seven goals also matched a season high for Toronto.

Western Conference Quarterfinals – Series “F” (best-of-5)
2-Grand Rapids Griffins vs. 7-Toronto Marlies

Game 1 – Sat., Apr. 25 – TORONTO 7, Grand Rapids 4
Game 2 – Sun., Apr. 26 – Grand Rapids at Toronto, 3:00
Game 3 – Wed., Apr. 29 – Toronto at Grand Rapids, 7:00
*Game 4 – Sat., May 2 – Toronto at Grand Rapids, 7:00
*Game 5 – Sun., May 3 – Toronto at Grand Rapids, 5:00
   *if necessary… All times Eastern

Game 3 – 5:00 ET, AHL Live (MCH leads series, 2-0)
@MonarchsHockey | @PortlandPirates | #MCHvsPOR

Two goals in the first 30 seconds of the game, followed by three goals in a 37-second span early in the third period, and Manchester is poised for a sweep after last night’s 6-2 win over Portland in Game 2… Michael Mersch scored the first of his two goals last night on the Monarchs’ first shot 20 seconds into the match, and Jordan Weal registered his third goal of the series only 10 seconds later… With Manchester holding onto a 2-1 lead, Sean Backman, Brian O’Neill and Nic Dowd scored in rapid succession to put Game 2 out of reach… Dowd (1-2-3) and Nick Shore (0-3-3) had three points each for the Monarchs last night… Manchester outshot Portland 30-19 for the game and have surrendered just 35 shots total to the Pirates through the first two games of the series… Jean-Francois Berube (2-0, 2.00, .886) made 17 saves for the Game 2 victory… Louis Domingue, who came on in relief of Mike McKenna for the second game in a row, stopped 23 of 26 shots for the Pirates… Manchester is 4-9 all-time with a chance to close out a series.

Eastern Conference Quarterfinals – Series “A” (best-of-5)
1-Manchester Monarchs vs. 8-Portland Pirates
Game 1 – Thu., Apr. 23 – MANCHESTER 5, Portland 2
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 25 – MANCHESTER 6, Portland 2
Game 3 – Sun., Apr. 26 – Manchester at Portland, 5:00
*Game 4 – Thu., Apr. 30 – Manchester at Portland, 7:00
*Game 5 – Sat., May 2 – Portland at Manchester, 7:00
   *if necessary… All times Eastern

Game 3 – 7:05 ET, AHL Live (Series tied, 1-1)
@WolfPackAHL | @AHLBruins | #HFDvsPRO

Down 1-0 in the series and down 1-0 in the third period of Game 2, Providence pulled off the comeback in Hartford last night and heads home for this evening’s pivotal Game 3 with its Eastern Conference quarterfinal series all tied up… Paul Carey and Alexander Khokhlachev scored early in the third to provide the Bruins with the winning 2-1 margin, and the B’s clamped down on defense and allowed only three Wolf Pack shots in the final frame to help preserve the victory… Carey’s goal came in his Calder Cup Playoff debut, although he did appear in three Stanley Cup Playoff games with Colorado last spring… Jeremy Smith (1-1, 1.52, .933) made 20 saves for the Bruins to snap a personal five-game playoff losing streak dating back to 2011… It was Providence’s first win in four tries at the XL Center this season; the B’s scored just three goals in those four games… Former Bruin Chris Bourque scored the only Wolf Pack goal in Game 1, the 22nd goal and 79th point of his Calder Cup Playoff career… Yann Danis (1-1, 1.50, .949) stopped 28 shots in defeat.

Eastern Conference Quarterfinals – Series “C” (best-of-5)
3-Hartford Wolf Pack vs. 6-Providence Bruins

Game 1 – Wed., Apr. 22 – HARTFORD 3, Providence 1
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 25 – Providence 2, HARTFORD 1
Game 3 – Sun., Apr. 26 – Hartford at Providence, 7:05
Game 4 – Tue., Apr. 28 – Hartford at Providence, 7:05
*Game 5 – Fri., May 1 – Providence at Hartford, 7:00
   *if necessary… All times Eastern

About Last Night…
Marlies roll 7 in Game 1
Monarchs work quickly to bury Pirates
Bears head home with 2-0 series lead
Bruins battle back to even series
Penguins push Crunch to the brink
IceHogs knock off Stars again
Barons work OT magic again

Alumni Watch
In Saturday’s Stanley Cup Playoff action, two-time AHL All-Star Jiri Hudler had two goals and two assists, Michael Ferland added two goals and an assist and Calgary eliminated Vancouver with a 7-4 victory in Game 6… Duncan Keith‘s goal with 3:48 left was his third point of the night and sent Chicago into the second round with a 4-3 win over Nashville in Game 6… 2013 Calder Cup champion Petr Mrazek made 28 saves for his second shutout of the series as Detroit grabbed a 3-2 series lead with a 4-0 win over Tampa Bay in Game 5… Nick Leddy had two assists in nearly 29 minutes of work and former AHL All-Star Jaroslav Halak stopped 38 of 39 shots as the N.Y. Islanders forced a Game 7 with a 3-1 win over Washington at Nassau Coliseum.

AHL Live

Don’t miss a second on the road to the 2015 Calder Cup championship. AHL Live brings AHL action to your desktop, laptop, smartphone or tablet all season long with live video webcasts and free highlights of every AHL game… Visit ahllive.com for details.