Toronto Hosts Two West Division Teams at Ricoh Coliseum this Week
Opponents This Week:
(Dec. 28): The Marlies will face the Hamilton Bulldogs, AHL affiliate of the Montreal Canadiens, on Monday night in Hamilton at Copps Coliseum at 7:30 p.m. (ET). The game will be the fourth of 12 meetings this season, and second in Hamilton, between the two teams. The Marlies hold a 2-1-0-0 advantage over their division-rivals. In their most recent matchup, the Marlies downed the Bulldogs 6-5 in overtime on December 5 at Ricoh Coliseum. Viktor Stalberg scored the game-winner and Andre Deveaux scored twice in the win. Marlies captain Ben Ondrus contributed an assist and a game-high, plus-three rating. Deveaux has registered a team-high two goals in three games against Hamilton this season. The Bulldogs shutout Toronto, 3-0, in the only game at Copps Coliseum on December 4. Cedrick Desjardins turned aside all 15 shots he faced and P.K. Subban recorded a goal and an assist in the win. Hamilton currently sits in second place in the North Division with a 19-8-2-3 record for 43 points. Hamilton is returning home after a four-game road trip and hasn’t played on home ice since their 3-2 loss to Milwaukee on December 15. Monday’s game will begin a stretch of home games for the Bulldogs, with 10 of their next 11 games being played at Copps Coliseum. Hamilton has won three of their past four games. The Marlies hold an all-time record of 28-19-3 against their QEW rivals. Brock Trotter currently leads the team in scoring with nine goals and 17 assists for 26 points. Trotter, Ryan Russell and J.T. Wyman each have two goals against the Marlies in three games. Rookie P.K. Subban ranks fifth in the AHL with a plus-15 rating. Goaltender Cedrick Desjardins ranks first in the AHL with five shutouts this season and enters Monday’s game with a record of 10-4-1 with a 1.52 goals-against average and 0.941 save percentage. Desjardins ranks second in the league in goals-against average and third in save percentage. Hamilton is the top defensive team in the league, only allowing 68 goals through 32 games so far this season. Marlies goaltender Joey MacDonald is 1-0-0 against the Bulldogs this season with a 1.85 goals-against average and 0.941 save percentage.
(Dec. 30): Toronto welcomes the Peoria Rivermen, AHL affiliate of the St. Louis Blues, on Wednesday evening for their final game of 2009. The contest will mark the first of two meetings between the two clubs and their first meeting since the 2006-07 season. The last meeting on January 12, 2007 resulted in a 4-2 Rivermen win in Peoria. Toronto holds a 2-2-0 all-time record against Peoria. The Rivermen currently rank second in the West Division with a record of 18-11-1-2 for 39 points, trailing first place Texas by four points. Peoria has won eight of their past 10 games, including three in a row at home. Wednesday’s game will end a five-game road trip for the Rivermen. Peoria leads the league in shootout games with seven, winning five of those contests. Their road power play enters the week ranked fourth overall with a 20.3% success rate. Lars Eller paces Peoria in scoring with 23 points (six goals, 17 assists) and Barry Tallackson has a team-high 10 goals. Defenceman Jonas Junland ranks fifth in the AHL on defence with 22 points (six goals, 16 assists). Forward Julian Talbot ranks first in the AHL with five shootout goals this season and rookie forward Aaron Palushaj is tied for second with four. Goaltender Ben Bishop paces the league with four shootout victories and owns a record of 11-5-1 with a 2.54 goals-against average and 0.905 save percentage.
(Jan. 2): The Marlies begin the new year on Saturday with a tilt against the Milwaukee Admirals, AHL affiliate of the Nashville Predators, at 4:00 p.m. at Ricoh Coliseum. The game marks the second of four matchups, and final contest at home, between the two clubs this season. Milwaukee enters the game with a record of 16-10-1-4 for 37 points, ranking them fourth in the West Division. Milwaukee’s game on Saturday versus Toronto is their third contest of a four-game week. The Admirals have won six of their past eight games. In their previous matchup on December 14 in Toronto, the Admirals defeated the Marlies 4-3 in overtime. Adam Munro made a Marlies season-high 43 saves in the loss. Andre Deveaux, Ben Ondrus and Christian Hanson scored the goals for Toronto. Last season the Marlies went 1-1-0-0 against the Admirals, with their win coming on January 9 at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee. The Marlies have an all-time record of 3-7-1 against Milwaukee. The Admirals own a record of 10-7-1-2 on the road. Forward Cal O’Reilly paces the club with 29 points (seven goals, 22 assists) and a plus-11 rating. O’Reilly, a Toronto-native, ranks seventh in the American Hockey League with 22 assists. He was reassigned by Nashville to the Admirals on December 11 after skating in three games with the Predators. O’Reilly’s assist on October 3 made him the Admirals all-time assists leader. Robert Dietrich ranks fourth in the league with 11 power play assists. Dietrich was drafted by Nashville in the sixth round, 174th overall, in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft, and ranks sixth in the AHL with 17 assists. The Predators announced on Monday that defenceman Alexander Sulzer was re-assigned to Milwaukee. Sulzer notched one assist in 10 games with Nashville this season, posting his first career NHL point (assist) on October 22 at Ottawa. Sulzer is Nashville’s third round pick in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft.
A Look Back at the Week: The Marlies dropped both games of their home-and-home series against the Lake Erie Monsters over the weekend. The team finished their four-game road trip on Saturday night in Cleveland with a 4-2 loss. Toronto fell behind 2-0 early in the first period but tied the game with goals by Josh Engel and Andre Deveaux. The Monsters took the lead late in the first period and sealed the victory in the second period with a goal by Tom Preissing. On Sunday, the Marlies allowed four, first period goals and eventually lost 7-0 to the Monsters. Toronto entered the weekend with a 4-0-0-0 record against their division-rivals. After their game in Hamilton on Monday night, the team plays two games at home before their eight-game road trip. The Marlies currently rank sixth in the North Division with a 13-14-3-2 record for 31 points.
Home Sweet Home: The Marlies have played their best hockey on home ice this season, holding a 9-5-3-0 advantage at Ricoh Coliseum. Despite dropping their past three games at home, Toronto has won seven of their last 13 games and has earned at least a point in 10 of their previous 14 contests on home ice. They have killed off 64-of-77 penalties (83.1%) at Ricoh Coliseum. Toronto plays two of their next three games at home.
Killing Time: The Marlies penalty killing unit has only allowed 13 goals over their past 14 games and they’ve given up only 19 power play goals over their last 24 contests. During that span they’ve successfully killed off 110-of-129 penalties against (85.3%). The penalty killing unit ranks ninth on the road with an 85.2% success rate and 13th overall (84.1%). The Marlies have only allowed 13 power play goals in 15 games away from Ricoh Coliseum.
Christian Keeping the Faith: Christian Hanson is currently on a two-game point streak for the Marlies. Since being reassigned from the Maple Leafs on December 6, Hanson has registered a goal and two assists in four games with the Marlies. He appeared in six games with the Maple Leafs, recording one assist and four penalty minutes with the big club. Hanson ranks first (tie) on the Marlies in points with 21 (nine goals, 12 assists). On November 20 in Lake Erie, he had the biggest night of his professional career, registering his first career AHL hat-trick and added an assist for four points. He currently ranks seventh (tie) in the American Hockey League in rookie scoring with 21 points. The Venetia, PA native ranks first (active) on the Marlies forwards with a plus-five rating. He also ranks first (tie) on the Marlies in multi-point games with six.
Keeping It Close: The Marlies have a very impressive record this season when the game is decided by one goal, marking a record of 8-0-3-2. Eight of their 13 victories this season have come in one-goal contests. Troy Bodie leads the club with three game-winning tallies and Christian Hanson and Ryan Hamilton are tied for second with two each. The Marlies own a 7-0-1-1 record when taking the lead into the third period.
Foster The Statistics: On November 23, the American Hockey League announced that Alex Foster was named the Reebok/AHL Player of the Week for the period ending November 22. In three games, Foster recorded six points (five goals, one assist) and a plus-two rating. He’s currently on a three-game goal streak which started on November 20 with a two-goal game against Lake Erie. Foster had missed the previous 10 games due to injury. In eight games this season, the Marlies assistant captain has registered six goals and two assists.
Multi-Point Games: Christian Hanson and Viktor Stalberg share the team lead with six multi-point games this season.
Reading Report: The Toronto Maple Leafs ECHL affiliate, the Reading Royals currently rank first in the East Division with an 18-10-1-2 record for 39 points. The Royals defeated Trenton on Sunday afternoon, 4-3 in overtime and have now won five of their past six games. Andrew Engelage was in goal for Reading and made 46 saves in the overtime win. Defenceman Eric Werner chipped in with two assists and recorded a plus-two rating. Reading has compiled a record of 8-2-0-1 over their past 11 games. Last week, the Marlies re-assigned Engelage to the Royals. In five games this season with Reading, Engelage has a 4-1-0 record. The Royals will play their next eight of nine games in Reading, beginning on Tuesday night with a game against Elmira.
MARLIES QUICK HITS:
– The Marlies signed forward Ben Gordon to a professional try-out contract on Sunday before their game versus Lake Erie. He made his Marlies debut on Sunday in the team’s 7-0 loss. In 28 games with Reading he registered 40 points (16 goals, 24 assists) and 29 penalty minutes. Gordon was the Royals leader in points, goals and assists. The International Falls, MN native was named the Sher-wood Hockey ECHL Player of the Week for December 14-20.
– Viktor Stalberg scored his first career NHL goal on December 18 against the Buffalo Sabres (Ryan Miller). Stalberg ranked second (tie) on the Marlies before his recall two weeks ago. In his past three games with the Leafs, Stalberg has two goals and a plus-three rating.
– Brennan Evans’ 111 penalty minutes currently ranks first in the AHL for defencemen.
– Stefano Giliati and Joey Ryan were both recalled from Reading on December 19. Giliati has registered two assists in four games since his recall with Toronto.
– Tyler Bozak has recorded six points in his past eight games (one goal, five assists). On November 20 he added a career-high three assists, with two of them coming on the power play. In 25 games this season, he has tallied 16 points (three goals, 13 assists). Bozak ranks tied for first on the Marlies in power play assists with six.
– Andre Deveaux has registered seven points over his past nine games (five goals, two assists). He ranks first (tie) on the club in points with 21 (seven goals, 13 assists) and is tied for first in assists.
– Brendan Mikkelson has registered three points over his past five games (two goals, one assist). In 12 games this season, Mikkelson has tallied seven points (three goals, four assists).
– Toronto owns a 3-0 record in the shootout on home ice, but has lost both shootouts (0-2) on the road this season.
Reebok/AHL PLAYER OF THE WEEK NOMINEE
For the week ending December 27, 2009, the Toronto Marlies nominated forward Andre Deveaux for consideration as the Reebok/AHL Player of the Week. Deveaux scored his eighth goal of the season for Toronto in the team’s 4-2 loss on Saturday against the Lake Erie Monsters. The tally was his third power play goal of the season which ranks him tied for first on the team in that category. In 30 games this season, Deveaux has notched 21 points (eight goals, 13 assists) and 82 penalty minutes.
MARLIES ON THE WEB
Follow the Marlies all season long for the latest, most up-to-date information on their official web site, torontomarlies.com
MARLIES UPCOMING PROMOTIONS:
Saturday, January 2 vs. Milwaukee Admirals – Mike Palmateer Bobblehead Day
Saturday, December 26 at Lake Erie Monsters
Marlies Dropped by Monsters in Boxing Day Matchup
Marlies Goals: Engel (2), Deveaux (8)
Monsters Goals: Haydar 2 (13), Fahey (6), Preissing (1)
Three Stars: 1. Haydar (LEM), 2. Hensick (LEM), 3. Fahey (LEM)
Recap: The Monsters picked up their first win of the season against the Marlies on Saturday night, 4-2 at Quicken Loans Arena. Darren Haydar scored the game’s first two goals before the three minute mark of the first period. Josh Engel and Andre Deveaux knotted the game at 2-2 with first period tallies. Deveaux’s goal came at the 13:27 mark of the first period on a Toronto power play. Brian Fahey’s goal from the point in the first period held up to be the game winner. Adam Munro made 23 saves in the loss.
Sunday, December 27 vs. Lake Erie Monsters
Monsters Hand Marlies Third Straight Loss
Marlies Goals: None
Monsters Goals: McNicoll 2 (3), Haydar 2 (15), Willsie (8), Stoa (11), Macias (1)
Three Stars: 1. Haydar (LEM), 2. Hensick (LEM), 3. Weiman (LEM)
Recap: The Marlies dropped both games of their home-and-home series against the Monsters, with a 7-0 loss to Lake Erie on Sunday afternoon at Ricoh Coliseum. The Monsters scored four, first period goals and never looked back in the win. The Marlies hit three goal posts in the second period, but weren’t able to beat goaltender Tyler Weiman who back-stopped Lake Erie to both wins against Toronto over the weekend. The Marlies power play went 0-for-6; while their penalty kill was 6-for-8. Joey MacDonald made 22 saves in his seventh loss of the season.
COMING THIS WEEK BOX OFFICE REPORT
Mon., Dec. 28 Toronto Marlies at Hamilton Bulldogs 7:30 pm Copps Coliseum TICKETS 905-529-8500
Wed., Dec. 30 Peoria Rivermen at Toronto Marlies 7:00 pm Ricoh Coliseum TICKETS 416-597-7825
Sat., Jan. 2 Milwaukee at Toronto Marlies 4:00 pm Ricoh Coliseum TICKETS 416-597-7825
All start times are listed in Eastern Time
Marlies home & away games broadcast on THE FAN 590, fan590.com or torontomarlies.com
Watch Marlies home games this season LIVE on Rogers TV Cable 10 in Toronto and 63 in Scarborough.