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PHANTOMS PREVIEW - ADIRONDACK at SYRACUSE CRUNCH

 

 

 

 

October 15, 2011

 

 

 

 

 

ADIRONDACK PHANTOMS (2-0-0) vs. Syracuse Crunch (1-0-0)
War Memorial at OnCenter
Saturday, October 15, 7:30 p.m.

Fresh off their second consecutive 6-3 win to start the season, the Phantoms are right back in action when they battle the Syracuse Crunch in the team’s first road game of the season, on Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. The Phantoms are the only unbeaten team in the Northeast Division and are just one of two Eastern Conference teams (Hershey) to have multiple wins this season without a defeat.

Did You Know

The Phantoms have now won nine straight at the Glens Falls Civic Center dating back to last season. Adirondack won their final seven games of the 2010-11 season including their last four game homestand in which they outscored their opponents by a combined 22-6. The team has picked up right where they left off to begin the 2011-12 campaign with back-to-back six goal games for the first time in Adirondack Phantoms history. The twelve goal total in consecutive games equals the most ever by the Adirondack Phantoms. They originally accomplished the feat on that ending homestand of last year with 9-5 and 3-0 wins on April 1 and 2 over Albany and Syracuse.


High-Flying Offense

The Phantoms have come out of the gates in 2011-12 playing like a well-oiled offensive machine. While they’ve excelled as a team—the Phantoms have the highest goals-per-game rate in the league—several individuals have stood out.

No Phantom has played a bigger role in the team’s early success than center Brayden Schenn. Schenn, a 20-year-old former first-round draft choice of the Los Angeles Kings, has three goals and three assists in two games with the Phantoms, including a hat trick in the team’s 6-3 win over the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Friday night. Long-regarded as one of the top offensive prospects in pro hockey, Schenn came to the Flyers organization in same trade which sent former Philadelphia captain Mike Richards to Hollywood.

Harry Zolnierczyk has also been very impressive in the early going. Although the undrafted Zolnierczyk didn’t make his professional debut until the final month of last season (after he finished his fourth-consecutive season at Brown University) he’s impressed the Flyers’ brass already with his explosive speed, soft hands and ability to finish. In Friday’s win over Bridgeport, Zolnierczyk had his first-career four-point game, registering a goal and three assists.

In addition to Schenn and Zolnierczyk, the Phantoms have had 10 different players score goals in the first two games, and 14 different skaters register points.

But while the Phantoms have scored early and often in their first two games, they’ve been especially dangerous on the power play. Adirondack’s man-advantage unit clicked at a rate of 3-of-6 on Friday, after also scoring in the team’s Opening Night victory over Connecticut.

Denis Hamel Countdown – 9 Goals to Catch Merkosky

Returning Phantoms leading scorer Denis Hamel continues to rise up the all-time AHL ranks in goals, points and total games played. Last Saturday on Opening Night, he scored his 316th career AHL goal putting him in a tie for 15th all-time in AHL history with current Washington Capitals Head Coach Bruce Boudreau. Even more exciting for Adironack fans, Hamel sits just nine goals back of Adirondack Hockey Hall of Famer Glenn Merkosky for 12th place all-time in the AHL. The former Adirondack Red Wing great, Merkosky, had 325 goals from 1980-91.

The scoring machine “Hammer” is creeping up on 14th place Fred Thurier (319 goals, 1937-52) and 13th place Bruce Cline, (321 goals, 1955-68) before he catches Merkosky.

Denis is tied for 42nd all-time in total points with 606. He is 34th in games played with 777, just seven games ahead of veteran teammate Dan Jancevski. Hamel has also played in 192 games in the NHL giving a total of 969 professional games and an opportunity to reach the 1,000 game milestone by mid-season.

The “Leight”er, The Better

There is no secret around the American Hockey League that if Michael Leighton isn’t one of the top AHL goalies in the league right now, that he may be one of the best goalies in AHL history. In Adirondack’s two season-opening wins, Leighton has been at his best “late” in games. He’s nabbed 26-of-27 shots in third periods in the first two games, while the Phantoms are out-scoring their opponents by a clip of 10-3 over the final two periods. Leighton is 6th all-time in AHL history with 34 shutouts which is also the most of any netminder since 1975. Last year, he had a 2.2 goals against average and equaled the all-time Phantoms franchise record with a .926 saves percentage.


Scouting the Syracuse Crunch

After not playing a game in the AHL’s opening week, the Crunch opened their season with a 5-4 overtime victory over the defending Calder Cup champion Binghamton Senators on Friday night.

The game’s first star and the scorer of the overtime-winner in Syracuse’s win over Binghamton was Kyle Palmieri. Palmieri was drafted in the first round by the Anaheim Ducks in 2009 (the same draft which produced Brayden Schenn), and since turning pro, he has 54 points in 63 AHL games.

Another scoring threat on the Crunch that should be a familiar face to Phantoms fans is Patrick Maroon. A native of St. Louis, Missouri, Maroon played nine games with the Phantoms last season, before the Flyers and Ducks made a trade which moved Maroon from Adirondack to Syracuse in the AHL. Maroon had been part of the Phantoms since the 2007-08 season, and he has 39 goals and 67 assists in 157 games for the Philadelphia and Adirondack Phantoms in his career.

On the back end, a guy to watch on Syracuse is 6-foot-5 inch defenseman Kurtis Foster, A veteran of 331 NHL games between the Atlanta Thrashers, Minnesota Wild, Tampa Bay Lightning, Edmonton Oilers and Anaheim Ducks, Foster is well-known in the hockey world for having miraculously resurrectied his career after a devastating leg injury he suffered during the 2007-08 season. While a member of the Minnesota Wild, Foster lost his balance while racing for a would-be icing and careened into the boards legs-first, resulting in a broken left femur. Foster’s unbelievable return to pro hockey made him a nominee for the NHL’s William Masterton Trophy, awarded annually to the NHL player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to ice hockey.

The Crunch’s goalie on opening night was Jeff Deslauriers, who made 24 saves on 28 shots. Deslauriers is a veteran of 58 NHL games with the Edmonton Oilers.

Affiliate of Brotherly Love

The Phantoms current roster features Eric Wellwood, Blake Kessel, Tye McGinn and Brayden Schenn, all of whom have older brothers on NHL rosters.

Blake Kessel’s older brother, Phil, and Brayden Schenn’s older brother, Luke, both skate for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Phil Kessel has scored 30 or more goals in each of the last three seasons and also recorded a hat trick last Saturday while Blake notched his first professional point with Adirondack. Phil has 128 career goals with the Boston Bruins and Toronto Maple Leafs entering this season.

Luke Schenn was picked fifth overall in the NHL Entry Draft in 2008 and then Brayden was grabbed fifth overall exactly one year later by Los Angeles. Luke is in his fourth season as a defenseman with Tornoto.
Tye McGinn’s brother Jamie plays for San Jose. Jaime has been a part of the Sharks organization since 2006-07. On October 3, 2009 he scored the game-winning goal in the first ever Adirondack Phantoms game at the Glens Falls Civic Center as a member of the visiting Worcester Sharks.

Eric Wellwood’s brother, Kyle, is part of the newly-formed Winnipeg Jets. He has also played for the San Jose Sharks, Toronto Maple Leafs and Vancouver Canucks. Kyle has played in 373 NHL games entering this season scoring 68 goals and 105 assists for 173 points. He scored a career high 18 goals with Vancouver in 2008-09.


Head Coach Joe Paterson

Joe Paterson returns for his second season as head coach of the Adirondack Phantoms. The Glen Lake resident assumed the reigns midway through 2010-11 and has guided the team to a 26-16-8 mark since December 20, 2010. As a player, Paterson played in 293 NHL games between the Detroit Red Wings, Los Angeles Kings, New York Rangers and Philadelphia Flyers. In the AHL, Paterson was a left wing on the Adirondack Red Wings from 1981-84, and scored 52 goals and 122 points in 169-career games. He also served as an assistant coach of the Adirondack Red Wings for three seasons from 1992-94, under Newell Brown. He played under Doug McKay, Bill Mahoney and Bill Dineen while with the Red Wings. His best season with Adirondack as a player was in 1981-82, when he scored 22 goals and 28 assists, for 50 points, in 74 games.

Don’t Miss the all-new Phantoms Power Hour

The Phantoms’ new radio show, the “Phantoms Power Hour,” debuts LIVE from McGinny’s Tavern at 193 Glen Street in Glens Falls, this coming Monday. The show will air on Q101.7 every Monday at 7:00 and feature special guests from your Adirondack Phantoms. This week’s special guests include #15 Brayden Schenn and #19 Luke Pither.

Be Here! Phantoms Tickets are On Sale Now!

Adirondack Phantoms game tickets are on sale now. Starting at just $12.25 for adults and $10 for kids it’s the best entertainment value in town. Season tickets offer great savings and outstanding perks and benefits. 22 game and 12 game plans give the fans flexibility to choose the games that work best for their schedule while also saving big compared with purchasing the tickets individually. Call the Phantoms at 518-480-3355 to find out more.

Phantoms to Host Outdoor Classic

The Phantoms have announced they will be a part of the NHL Winter Classic week-long celebration of hockey when they host the Hershey Bears on January 6 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia. This will be only the third outdoor game in AHL history and is the first to be associated with the NHL Winter Classics. It is also the first ever outdoor game for the Phantoms.

"This is an extremely exciting day for the Phantoms organization and Phantoms fans everywhere," said Phantoms President Rob Brooks. "A hockey celebration and atmosphere unlike anything the AHL has ever seen will happen at Citizens Bank Park. We are extremely grateful to (Comcast Spectacor President) Peter Luukko for helping make this truly great event a reality."

Citizens Bank Park will also host the Philadelphia Flyers vs. the New York Rangers on January 2. It is the baseball home for the Philadelphia Phillies and will have a seating capacity of approximately 40,000. The Phantoms are hoping to break the all-time AHL attendance record of 21,673 set last season at an outdoor game in East Hartford, Conn.

On the Air!

All Adirondack Phantoms games are carried live on the flagship home of the Phantoms Hockey Network, Classic Hits Q101.7 FM. Each broadcast begins with a 30 pregame show. Also featured is an extended post-game show including audio replay highlights of the big goals so be sure to tune in as you driving home after the game. Bob Rotruck returns for his second season has the Voice of the Phantoms.

Fans can also listen on the Phantoms Hockey Network on the internet at phantomshockey.com and on the team’s alternative audio link, ustream.tv/channel/phantomsradio . Games can also be seen on www.ahllive.com. The presenting sponsor of the Phantoms Hockey Network is Curtis Lumber.

Beginning Monday, October 17 is the all new "Phantoms Power Hour" weekly show airing live from McGinny's Tavern in downtown Glens Falls. The show featuring Phantoms players, host Bob Rotruck, and you, the fans, airs on Mondays from 7-8 p.m. on Q101.7. #19 Luke Pither and #15 Brayden Schenn are schedule to appear on the debut show this Monday.


Jimmer Bobbleheads and More!

The first ever bobblehead of local sports icon Jimmer Fredette highlights a great schedule of promotional giveaways, events and bargains and fun. Even more post-game skates with the players and lots of other opportunities for fans to interact with the team. Magnet Schedules, Youth Jerseys, T-Shirts, Youth Knit Caps and that’s just to name a few.

Every Sunday home game is Sunday Family Fun Pack Day when $39 gets you an amazing value with three tickets, three hot dogs, three sodas, bucket of popcorn and a program. All Wednesday games are Dollar Hot Dog Nights.

Don’t forget other fun and special events like Pucks and Paws on December 28 when fans can bring their dog to the game. And the On Ice Halloween Costume Parade on October 29.

Social Media Milestone

The Adirondack Phantoms thank all of our great fans for helping us surpass reach the 10,000 milestone for total social media followers. 6,400 fans on our team’s Facebook page and over 3,800 fans following us on twitter. And we’re growing all the time! Be sure to keep up with the latest Phantoms happenings and follow the Phantoms on twitter @phantomshockey and on facebook.com/adkhockey


Get great savings and have fun with your friends, family or co-workers by bringing your group of 15 or more fans to enjoy fast-paced, hard-hitting Phantoms hockey. Call the Phantoms to find out more at 518-480-3355 and check the team's website at phantomshockey.com.



 

 

 

 

 

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