Manchester captures Canning Trophy

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The Manchester Monarchs have won the Richard F. Canning Trophy as the American Hockey League’s Eastern Conference champions for 2014-15, claiming the title with a 3-1 victory over the Hartford Wolf Pack in Game 4 of their best-of-seven series at the XL Center in Hartford, Conn., on Wednesday night.

The Monarchs are heading to the Calder Cup Finals for the first time in the franchise’s 14-year history. They will take on the winner of the Western Conference Finals between the Utica Comets and Grand Rapids Griffins, currently tied at one game apiece.

The top development affiliate of the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings, the Monarchs – led by head coach Mike Stothers – finished with the best record in the AHL during the regular season (50-17-6-3, 109 points), then defeated the Portland Pirates (3-2) in the conference quarterfinals, the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (4-1) in the conference semifinals and the Wolf Pack (4-0) in the conference finals to earn the right to play for the Calder Cup.

The best-of-seven 2015 Calder Cup Finals will begin at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, N.H., on Sat., June 6 (6 p.m. ET) and Sun., June 7 (5 p.m. ET). The remainder of the schedule will be announced following the completion of the Western Conference Finals.

Established in 1990, the AHL’s Eastern Conference championship trophy honors Richard F. Canning, who served the AHL for more than 50 years during his career, including a term as league president from 1958-61. Mr. Canning is recognized as the author of the AHL’s constitution, by-laws and regulations.