Feb. 5 targeted as start date for 2020-21 season Details

West Notes: Monsters rise, OKC rests

 

Also see… East Notes
 
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Abbotsford returned from a 10-game road trip last weekend and posted two straight wins over Toronto, outscoring the Marlies 7-1… Goaltender Leland Irving has been between the pipes for all four games of the Heat’s current winning streak, and he continues to lead the AHL in both wins (24) and minutes (2620) while ranking a close second in saves (1048), three shy of Rochester’s Jacob Markstrom… Alex Kotalik has posted six assists in seven games since joining Abbotsford from parent-club Calgary, and Gaelan Patterson is riding a three-game assist streak (0-4-4)… Ryan Stone netted a hat trick on Friday vs. Toronto after totaling four goals in his previous 26 games this year… The Heat battle Oklahoma City on Friday night in Calgary, and the teams play again on Saturday in Abbotsford.
 
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Chicago took a 3-1 matinee win at Houston on Thursday afternoon, giving the Wolves their first back-to-back victories since collecting three in a row from Jan. 16-22… Goaltender Peter Mannino has now turned aside 58 of 61 shots (.951) during this mini winning streak… Defenseman Mark Matheson recorded a season-high three assists on Feb. 9 in the Wolves’ 7-5 loss to Grand Rapids… Nigel Dawes was recalled by parent-club Atlanta on Thursday after netting a goal in three straight games (3-2-5) for the Wolves; Dawes ranks fourth in the AHL with 25 goals (25-17-42) in 46 games overall… Chicago visits Rockford on Friday before hosting Texas on Saturday.
 
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Grand Rapids moved back to the .500 mark once again on Wednesday with a 5-3 victory over Hamilton… Since they were 8-7-0-3 on Nov. 20, the Griffins has been at .500 or just one game to either side of the breakeven point for a remarkable 38 consecutive games… Grand Rapids’ 7-5 win at Chicago on Feb. 9 marked head coach Curt Fraser’s 100th victory behind the Griffins bench; Fraser joins Danton Cole (116) and Greg Ireland (109) as the only Grand Rapids bench bosses to reach the century mark… Defenseman Logan Pyett is on a four-game scoring streak (1-4-5) after recording just one point in his previous 10 outings… The Griffins host Texas and Peoria this weekend, with a Saturday afternoon visit to Toronto in between.
 
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Hamilton has lost five straight games and is 1-7-0-0 in its last eight outings to fall from first place in the North Division into a three-way tie for the division’s final guaranteed playoff spot… Still without top offensive threats David Desharnais (10-35-45) and Max Pacioretty (17-15-32) – both on NHL recall – the Bulldogs have gone 10 straight games without scoring more than three goals… Defenseman Mathieu Carle has tallied a goal in two straight games for Hamilton, and fellow rearguard Frederic St. Denis has a goal in two of his last three outings… The Bulldogs still rank third in the AHL in defense, allowing 2.49 goals per tilt… Hamilton visits Toronto on Friday night before hosting San Antonio on Saturday afternoon.
 
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After recording four goals (including shootouts) in six straight games, Houston has managed just one in back-to-back 3-1 losses to Peoria and Chicago… The Aeros are on their first two-game regulation losing skid since falling at Milwaukee and Rockford on Dec. 29 and 30… Houston will visit those same two teams, in that order, on Friday and Saturday this weekend in an effort to break the skid… Jon DiSalvatore notched Houston’s lone goal on Wednesday vs. Chicago and now has a point in three straight (1-2-3) and 12 of his last 14 contests (5-11-16)… DiSalvatore still needs eight goals to reach 20 for an eighth straight season.
 
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Lake Erie has won four straight games and 12 of its last 16 (12-3-0-1) to move from the North Division basement into a tie with Manitoba for first place in the division… The fourth-year Monsters, who have yet to reach the Calder Cup Playoffs, visit Manitoba for a key two-game set this weekend in Winnipeg… David Van der Gulik has netted a goal in five of his last seven games played (5-3-8), and Ryan Stoa is on a three-game scoring streak (2-2-4)… Matthew Ford put up a season-high three points (2-1-3) in Lake Erie’s 4-2 win over Texas on Wednesday afternoon… The Monsters have racked up 10 shorthanded goals this year, tied with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton for second-most in the AHL behind Grand Rapids’ 12.
 
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Manitoba began its post-All-Star break schedule with back-to-back road wins over Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and Hershey, but the Moose are just 1-5-0-0 in six games since and are now clinging to a share of first place in the North Division… The Moose boast the AHL’s fourth-ranked defense (2.52 goals allowed per game) but are just 14th on offense (2.85)… Eddie Lack leads all AHL rookie goaltenders and is tied for fourth overall in the league with a 2.04 goals-against average through 33 appearances (18-12-3)… Guillaume Desbiens scored two goals in the Moose’s two-game midweek set with Toronto after totaling that same amount in his previous 24 games combined… Manitoba hosts Lake Erie twice this weekend in a battle of the North’s top two squads.
 
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Milwaukee is 10-3-0-3 in its last 16 games and is currently tied with Peoria for second place in the West Division, one point back over front-running Houston… The Admirals still hold five games in hand on the Aeros and three on the Rivermen… Rookie Gabriel Bourque has a point in four of his last five games (2-4-6), and Chris Mueller shows three goals and four points in his last four outings… Linus Klasen has also found the scoresheet in four of five (2-4-6), while defenseman Roman Josi has put together a 10-game scoring run (5-6-11), the second-longest active streak in the AHL… Milwaukee hosts Houston and Texas this weekend, with a Saturday visit to Peoria in between.
 
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Oklahoma City has been idle since collecting a 2-0 win over San Antonio on Feb. 9… The Barons finally hit the ice again on Friday in Calgary for a game against Abbotsford, and the teams will then travel to Abbotsford for a Saturday night tilt… Oklahoma City’s 63 points, which are currently good for sixth place and a non-playoff spot in the competitive West Division, would have the Barons in third place in both the North and Atlantic Divisions… The Barons are 15-0-1-1 this season when Alexandre Giroux scores at least one goal… Giroux has registered a point in four of his last five outings (5-3-8)… Oklahoma City is 19-0-0-2 when taking a lead into the third period.
 
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T.J. Hensick’s scoring streak seemed destined to end before he recorded an assist on Graham Mink’s goal with just two seconds left in Peoria’s 2-1 loss at Rockford on Wednesday… Hensick now has a point in 11 straight games (6-10-16), the longest active streak in the AHL, and his 52 points overall (16-36-52) are now good for sixth place in the league… Nathan Oystrick now has a point in four of his last five games (1-3-4), and Mink’s goal came in his first contest back following a four-game absence… Peoria is tied with Milwaukee for second place in the West Division and will host the Admirals on Saturday night before visiting Grand Rapids on Sunday and Rockford on Monday.
 
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Rochester is on a three-game winning streak and boasts a 6-3-0-0 mark in its last nine outings, and Chris Taylor has netted the game-winning goal in three of the Americans’ last four victories, including each of the last two… Taylor had not scored a game-winner all season prior to this run… Defenseman Clay Wilson has racked up seven assists during the current winning streak, and the two-time AHL All-Star is now tied for the league lead among rearguards in both assists (31) and points (39) through 53 games… Bill Thomas is on a three-game goal-scoring streak, which was interrupted by a brief NHL recall to Florida… The Amerks host Hershey on Friday before visiting Syracuse on Saturday.
 
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Rockford halted a four-game winless skid (0-3-1-0) on Wednesday with a 2-1 triumph over Peoria… The IceHogs, who are 21-24-3-4 on the season, have collected six of their 21 victories in games where they scored either two goals or one… Evan Brophey snapped an 11-game goal-scoring slump with the game-winner on Wednesday, and Jeff Taffe notched his team-leading 17th of the season… Igor Makarov scored just 34 seconds into Friday’s 6-5 overtime loss to Texas, marking the IceHogs’ fastest goal from the start of a game this season… The IceHogs continue a four-game homestand this weekend against division rivals Chicago and Houston.
 
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San Antonio is 3-2-0-0 thus far on its nine-game road trip, which continues this weekend in Syracuse and Hamilton… Both Rampage losses on the journey have come via the shutout, and all three victories have been by a one-goal margin… At 32-20-2-0 (66 points), the Rampage are just two points out of first place in the West Division but three points from falling out of a playoff spot altogether… Viktor Tikhonov scored both goals in Friday’s 2-1 win at Manitoba, his first tallies since recording a goal on Nov. 26 at Houston… Brett MacLean enjoyed a four-game scoring streak (3-4-7) from Jan. 26 to Feb. 5 but is without a point in three contests since.
 
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Texas dropped consecutive games at Lake Erie this week but still holds a one-point edge on Oklahoma City for the crossover playoff spot in the Western Conference… The Stars have lost two straight in regulation for the first time since Jan. 7-8… Greg Rallo is on a four-game scoring streak (1-3-4), one shy of matching his season high five-game run from Dec. 10-17… Defenseman Dan Spang’s three-game scoring run (2-2-4) ended in Wednesday’s 4-2 loss to the Monsters… Dave Bonk registered a goal in both games against Lake Erie this week… Texas continues its eight-game road trip this weekend with stops in Grand Rapids, Chicago, and Milwaukee.
 
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Toronto bounced back from a pair of losses in Abbotsford last weekend to collect a pair of victories at Manitoba this week, finishing an even 2-2-0-0 on its four-game road trip… The Marlies totaled just one goal in Abbotsford but combined for seven in two games against the Moose… Ryan Hamilton netted a hat trick on Wednesday and now shows five goals and six points in his last five outings… Rookie Nazem Kadri is averaging just under a point per game in the AHL this season, checking in with 29 points (11-18-29) in 30 contests with the Marlies… Toronto, which is part of a three-way tie for third place in the North Division, opens an eight-game homestand on Friday vs. Hamilton… The Marlies will play 19 of their final 24 games at Ricoh Coliseum.