Toronto Hosts the 2009 Calder Cup Champions, the Hershey Bears on Thursday at Ricoh Coliseum
Opponents This Week:
(Feb. 24 & 28): The Marlies travel to Hamilton twice this week to take on their division rivals, the Bulldogs, AHL affiliate of the Montreal Canadiens. The game on Wednesday night will mark the seventh of 12 meetings this season between the two teams. Each team has won three games against each other this season. In their most recent matchup, the Marlies dropped a 2-1 decision against the Bulldogs in Toronto on February 6. After Andre Deveaux got the Marlies out to an early 1-0 lead, Michael Glumac scored two second period goals to down Toronto. The Marlies hold an all-time record of 28-11-3 against their QEW rivals. Hamilton currently leads the North Division and the Western Conference with a 36-14-3-5 record for 80 points. Hamilton’s 80 points are currently two more than any other team in the conference. Last week, the Bulldogs got back on the winning track with two consecutive victories after dropping three straight games. Bulldogs defenceman Yannick Weber is currently representing his native Switzerland in the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympic Games on the Swiss Men’s Ice Hockey team. Weber has suited up for all three of his country’s preliminary round games. Forward Tom Pyatt has registered five multi-point games in his last seven contests, highlighted by a hat-trick to go along with an assist in the Bulldogs’ 5-2 win over Rochester on February 5. Brock Trotter has scored six goals and five assists for 11 points in his last seven games. The former Denver Pioneer leads the Bulldogs and is fourth in the AHL with 28 goals and 31 assists for 59 points in 54 games played this season.
(Feb. 25): The Marlies play their lone home game of the week on Thursday night when they host the Hershey Bears, AHL affiliate of the Washington Capitals, at 7:00 p.m. This will be the second and final meeting between the Bears and Marlies this season. The Bears hold a 5-4-0-0 all-time advantage over Toronto. When the two teams met on December 20 in Hershey, the Bears downed the Marlies 5-1. Darryl Boyce had the lone Marlie goal and Jay Beagle was the game’s first star, recording a goal and an assist for the Bears. Hershey currently ranks first in the East Division and the American Hockey League with a 43-11-0-2 record for 88 points. The Bears are 18-8-0-0 on the road this season and are 8-2-0-0 overall in their past 10 games. The Bears have three players that rank in the top 10 in league scoring. Keith Aucoin (28 goals, 47 assists), Alexandre Giroux (29 goals, 43 assists) and Andrew Gordon (26 goals, 29 assists) all rank towards the top in the AHL in points. Aucoin and Giroux are first and second respectively. Gordon ranks second in the AHL with 13 power play goals, and Giroux and Aucoin have a combined 41 power play assists. Rookie defenceman John Carlson ranks third in the league with a plus-33 rating. Carlson has registered four goals and 30 assists in 43 games for the Bears. He ranks eighth (tie) in the American Hockey League for defenceman scoring with 34 points. Boyd Kane has tallied 19 goals this season, with four coming while shorthanded.
What Happened Last Week: The Marlies are currently on a three-game winning streak and went 3-1-0-0 in their four games last week, all at Ricoh Coliseum. They began their week with a 5-1 loss to the Abbotsford Heat on Monday afternoon on Family Day. On Wednesday night, the Marlies erased an early two-goal deficit and edged the Moose 4-3. Tim Brent had two goals, while Phil Oreskovic and Greg Scott both finished with two-point performances. The Marlies used goals from Ben Ondrus and Josh Engel to edge the Texas Stars 2-1 on Friday night. Toronto shutout the Moose for their third straight win against their division rivals. James Reimer made 31 saves and Viktor Stalberg netted the game-winner. The Marlies are currently in sixth place in the North Division with a 23-26-5-5 record for 56 points and sit six points out of the final playoff spot in the division.
Home Sweet Home: The Marlies have played their best hockey on home ice this season, holding a 16-8-3-2 advantage at Ricoh Coliseum. With their 2-0 win over the Moose on Saturday, the Marlies have earned at least a point in nine of their past 12 home contests and have won three in a row at Ricoh Coliseum. They greeted their season-high crowd of 7,084 with a 4-3 win over Hamilton on January 23 after their season-high, eight-game road trip. The Marlies have scored a power play goal in each of their past five home games, going 5-for-21 during that span (23.8%). Toronto plays four of their next six games on home ice.
Another Brick in the Wall: James Reimer recorded his first career AHL shutout on Saturday, making 31 saves and earning first star honours in the club’s 2-0 win over Manitoba. Reimer’s shutout was the team’s first shutout since October 30 when Joey MacDonald didn’t allow a goal against Adirondack. Reimer has guided the Marlies to at least a point in nine of his past 10 starts (7-1-1). Over his past nine starts, he’s recorded a 0.939 save percentage and 1.94 goals-against average. In 12 games this season, Reimer has a record of 8-2-1 with a 2.21 goals-against average and 0.930 save percentage.
We’re Going Streaking: Kyle Calder is currently on a Marlies season-high seven-game point streak, during which he’s recorded four goals and four assists. In four games last week, Calder notched two goals and two assists, all coming on the power play. Calder has tallied a point in 12 of his past 15 contests (five goals, nine assists). Josh Engel has notched a point in each of his past three games (one goal, two assists).
Putting Up Points: Since joining the Marlies line-up on January 22 in Grand Rapids, Tim Brent has posted a point in 10 of his 13 games (six goals, seven assists). On Wednesday night Brent scored twice, including the game-winner for his fourth multi-point contest of the season. Greg Scott registered an assist on Saturday and now has registered a point in 11 of his past 17 games, recording six goals and eight assists during that span. Scott has three assists over his past three games.
No Stal-ing for Viktor: Viktor Stalberg was re-assigned to the Marlies on February 13 after playing in two games with the Maple Leafs. Stalberg’s first period goal on Saturday held up to be the game-winner and he was also the game’s second star. Stalberg has tallied 10 points (four goals, six assists) over his past 15 games with the Marlies and ranks second on the club in points. In 36 games this season, he’s posted 31 points (12 goals, 19 assists) and a team-high, plus-seven rating. Stalberg ranks 11th in the American Hockey League in rookie points.
Keeping It Close: The Marlies have a very impressive record this season when the game is decided by one goal, marking a record of 15-1-5-5. 15 of their 23 victories this season have come in one-goal contests. Christian Hanson and Troy Bodie share the club lead with three game-winning tallies. The Marlies own a 15-0-2-2 record when taking the lead into the third period. Toronto holds a 15-6-5 record when scoring the game’s opening goal and are 18-6-6 when they score three or more goals in a game.
Multi-Point Games: The Marlies had three players notch multi-point games last week. Tim Brent, Phil Oreskovic and Greg Scott each collected two-point games on Wednesday night. Christian Hanson and Viktor Stalberg pace the club with eight multi-point games this season.
1. Hanson 8
3. Deveaux 5
4. Scott 4
Reading Report: The Toronto Maple Leafs ECHL affiliate, the Reading Royals currently rank second in the East Division with a 25-23-1-3 record for 54 points. The Royals have dropped their past two games but will look to end that streak on Friday night when they host Wheeling. Robert Slaney and Andrew Engelage were re-assigned to the Royals on February 12. Slaney notched three assists on February 13 in the team’s 6-5 win over Trenton. Ben Gordon represented the Royals at the ECHL All-Star Game in mid-January. Gordon’s tallied 21 goals and 35 assists for 56 points in 45 games this season, ranking him seventh in the ECHL and first on the Royals in points.
MARLIES QUICK HITS:
– The Anaheim Ducks loaned defenceman Brett Festerling to the Marlies last Tuesday. In 30 games with the Ducks, Festerling tallied three assists and six penalty minutes. Festerling notched his first point (assist) on Friday night since being loaned to the Marlies.
– Andre Deveaux currently leads the team in points (32), goals (14), power play goals (five) and penalty minutes (165).
– The Marlies have only allowed four goals over their past three games.
– Phil Oreskovic scored his first goal of the season on Wednesday night in the Marlies’ 4-3 win over Manitoba. Oreskovic’s shorthanded goal was his third career AHL tally in 173 games.
– Kyle Calder is currently on a Marlies season-high seven-game point streak (four goals, four assists).
– Toronto has won their last six games when they’ve out-shot their opponent.
– The Marlies have picked up at least a point in 11 of their past 17 games (8-6-0-3).
– Brennan Evans’ 162 penalty minutes currently ranks second in the AHL for defencemen and ninth (tie) overall.
Reebok/AHL PLAYER OF THE WEEK NOMINEE
For the week ending February 21, 2010, the Toronto Marlies nominated forward Kyle Calder for consideration as the Reebok/AHL Player of the Week. Kyle Calder notched a point in each of the Marlies four games this week, extending his point streak to a Marlies season-high seven games. Calder finished the week with two goals and two assists, all coming on the power play. On Sunday, in the Marlies 2-0 win, Calder was named the game’s third star and scored a power play marker.
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:
Wednesday, March 3 vs. Chicago Wolves – School Day Game at 11:00 a.m.
Saturday, March 6 vs. Rochester Americans – South Asian Cultural Day
Monday, February 15 vs. Abbotsford Heat
Heat Too Hot for Marlies
Marlies Goal: Hodgman (5)
Heat Goals: Cunning (12), Latendresse 2 (2), Backlund 2 (12)
Three Stars: 1. Murray (ABB), 2. Backlund (ABB), 3. Latendresse (ABB)
Recap: The Heat scored three third period goals on their way to a 5-1 victory over the Marlies on Monday afternoon in Toronto. After the Heat made it 1-0 with a power play goal, Justin Hodgman netted his fifth tally of the season on a man-advantage to tie the game. Ashton Rome and Kyle Calder both picked up assists on Hodgman’s goal. Olivier Latendresse scored his first of two goals late in the second period to put Abbotsford ahead after 40 minutes. The Heat out-shot the Marlies 17-7 and scored three times in the third period to drop Toronto 5-1. James Reimer finished the game with 34 saves in his second consecutive start.
Wednesday, February 17 vs. Manitoba Moose
Brent’s Two Goals Powers Marlies Past Moose
Marlies Goals: Calder (5), Brent 2 (6), Oreskovic (1)
Moose Goals: Grabner (12), Rosa (19), Shirokov (17)
Three Stars: 1. Brent (TOR), 2. Oreskovic (TOR), 3. Baumgartner (MTB)
Recap: Tim Brent’s two-goal performance helped the Marlies beat the Manitoba Moose 4-3 on Wednesday evening. After the Moose jumped out to an early 2-0 lead, Kyle Calder cut into the lead with a power play goal. Brent scored his first of the night to tie the game and Phil Oreskovic’s shorthanded tally gave the Marlies the lead at the second intermission. Oreskovic’s first goal of the season capped a two-point night for the defenceman. Brent put the Marlies in front by two goals early in the third period with his sixth goal of the season. Greg Scott finished the game with two helpers. Manitoba added a goal at the 12:23 mark of the third period, but it wasn’t enough as the Marlies held on for the win. Joey MacDonald made 22 saves for his ninth victory this season.
Friday, February 19 vs. Texas Stars
Marlies Edge Stars 2-1
Marlies Goals: Ondrus (5), Engel (3)
Stars Goal: Lindgren (10)
Three Stars: 1. Calder (TOR), 2. Ondrus (TOR), 3. Morin (TEX)
Recap: The Marlies won their fourth straight game when they’ve been able to out-shoot their opponents, dropping the Texas Stars 2-1 on Friday night. Ben Ondrus scored his first goal since December 14 after returning from injury to put the Marlies in front 1-0. Ben Simon dug a loose puck free and passed it to Ondrus who scored his fifth of the season. Josh Engel wired home his third of the season on a Marlies power play after receiving a pass from Brett Festerling to add to the lead. Kyle Calder collected an assist on the goal, extending his point streak to a Marlies season-high (tie) six games. The Stars were finally able to beat Joey MacDonald with just over four minutes remaining in the third period to cut the lead to 2-1. MacDonald made 21 saves for his 10th win of the season.
Saturday, February 20 vs. Manitoba Moose
Reimer Shuts Out Moose 2-0
Marlies Goals: Stalberg (12), Calder (6)
Moose Goals: None
Three Stars: 1. Reimer (TOR), 2. Stalberg (TOR), 3. Calder (TOR)
Recap: James Reimer made 31 saves for his first career American Hockey League shutout on Saturday afternoon against the Manitoba Moose. Viktor Stalberg gave the Marlies an early lead just five minutes into the game with his 12th tally of the season. Greg Scott and Tim Brent both collected assists on the goal. Kyle Calder extended his Marlies season-high point streak to seven games when he scored on the power play to put Toronto ahead by two goals. Josh Engel picked up an assist on the goal, pushing his point streak to three games. Toronto took a 2-0 lead into the first intermission. From that point on it was all Reimer who made 24 saves over the final 40 minutes of the game. The Marlies power play clicked for a goal on four opportunities.
COMING THIS WEEK BOX OFFICE REPORT
Wed., Feb. 24 Toronto Marlies at Hamilton Bulldogs 7:30 pm Copps Coliseum TICKETS 905-529-8500
Thu., Feb. 25 Hershey Bears at Toronto Marlies 7:00 pm Ricoh Coliseum TICKETS 416-597-7825
Sun., Feb. 28 Toronto Marlies at Hamilton Bulldogs 6:00 pm Copps Coliseum TICKETS 905-529-8500
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