Game Preview – Phantoms vs. Devils – Game #20

Lehigh Valley Phantoms (12-4-3) vs. Binghamton Devils (5-11-6)
Friday, April 23, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. – RWJHealth Hockey House, Newark, NJ

Tonight’s Game – The Lehigh Valley Phantoms travel to Newark, NJ to take on the Binghamton Devils in the first of three consecutive games between the two teams. This is the 20th game of the season for the Phantoms and their seventh against the Devils. Lehigh Valley is 4-0-2 against Binghamton this year but the Devils took the most recent meeting on April 5 with a 2-1 shootout win in Newark.

Last Time Out – The Phantoms returned to game-action for the first time in 16 days on Wednesday night and were dealt a 6-1 loss at PPL Center by the Hershey bears. It was the worst loss of the season for Lehigh Valley and equaled the most goals allowed in a game. Ryan Fitzgerald (10th) scored on the power play for the team’s lone marker. Cal O’Reilly recorded his 495th career assist. Connor McMichael paced the Hershey attack with two power-play goals and one assist while Cameron Schilling had three assists. Hershey went 3-for-7 on the power play representing only the second time this season for the formerly top penalty-kill in the league to surrender more than one power-play goal in a game.

Back in Action – The Leigh Valley Phantoms were away from the ice for nine days due to COVID protocols and game postponements. The team did not practice nor were players able to skate during that time. The Phantoms resumed practices this past Monday in preparation for their first game in 16 days on Wednesday, April 21 after having not played a game since Monday, April 5 at Newark.
Lehigh Valley had five total games postponed during their layoff including three home games on April 10, April 11 and April 18.

Change of Plans – When the Phantoms return to Newark on Monday evening at 6:00 p.m. they will now play a full game against the Devils. Previously, the two teams were only going to play two periods and were planning to resume a suspended game from March 10. That game will not be continued but all stats from the game will count.

York is Here! – Big Ten Defenseman of the Year Cam York made his professional debut on Wednesday, April 21 against the Hershey Bears and shook off the rust as he played his first game in five weeks since the Big Ten tournament with the University of Michigan. York signed an NHL Entry-Level Contract with the Philadelphia Flyers and was officially added to the Phantoms roster on April 1. The southern California native from Anaheim Hills was captain of the USA team that won the Gold Medal at the 2021 World Juniors in Edmonton. York just completed his sophomore season at the University of Michigan and was a first-round selection of the Philadelphia Flyers at the 2019 NHL Entry Draft.

Transactions –
Apr 22 – D Mason Millman – Loaned to Phantoms
Apr 22 – F Andy Andreoff – Loaned to Phantoms
Apr 22 – F Pascal Laberge – Recalled to Taxi Squad
Apr 22 – G Felix Sandstrom – Recalled to Taxi Squad

Comeback Kids! – The Phantoms have gone 5-4-1 in games in which they were trailing at the second intermission. That is easily the most comeback wins in the league and they are the only team with a winning record when trailing after 40 minutes. Additionally, the Phantoms are 3-0-1 when tied after two periods giving them a combined record of 9-4-2 when trailing or tied at the second intermission.
Almost half of the team’s games have gone to overtime; 9 out of 19. Lehigh Valley is 5-2 in overtime decisions and 1-1 in shootouts.

Get Your Tickets, Here!! – The Phantoms and PPL Center are pleased to announce we are “Back to Live.” The Phantoms are now permitted to allow 2,500 fans per game. Limited tickets for all upcoming Phantoms home games are available at The Phantoms have six home games remaining on the schedule including Saturday, April 24 and Saturday, May 1.

McIntyre Thrives in The Valley – 28-year-old goalie Zane McIntyre is not only a new Daddy, he is also having a tremendously successful debut campaign with the Phantoms. McIntyre is 8-1-2 with a 2.19 goals-against avg. that rates 6th in the AHL and 3rd among active AHL goaltenders. His .926 save percentage is 4th best in the AHL. The former Mike Richter Award winner at the University of North Dakota has played in 195 career AHL games over six seasons. He spent first four years with Providence in a stretch that also included an AHL All-Star Classic appearance at PPL Center in 2017.

Cal Closes In – Cal O’Reilly is knocking on the door to become only the 10th player in AHL history to record 500 assists. The AHL active’s scoring leader currently has 495 helpers including ten this season. O’Reilly’s 624 career points rates 36th all-time in AHL history. He currently stands 11th in assists tied with former Hershey Bears great Chris Bourque (495).

The Series – The Phantoms are 4-0-2 against the Devils this season.
Wed Feb 10 @ BNG L 1-2 (OT) Brett Seney for Devils scores in OT
Sat Feb 20 @ LV W 3-0 Zane McIntyre 25-save shutout. 2 goals for Zayde Wisdom
Wed Feb 24 @ BNG W 5-4 (OT) Max Willman 2 goals including OT winner
Wed Mar 10 @ BNG 1-1 Game suspended after one period. Cal O’Reilly goal
Fri Mar 26 @ BNG W 3-2 Tanner Laczynski Hat Trick. Game-winning goal shorthanded breakaway in 3rd
Sat Mar 27 @ LV W 6-3 Ryan Fitzgerald 2 goals, Wade Allison and Tanner Laczynski each 1-2-3. Alex Lyon 22 saves
Mon Apr 5 @ BNG L 1-2 (SO) Linus Hogberg first pro goal. Zane McIntyre 27 saves on 28 shots

Upcoming –
Saturday, April 24, 7:05 – Phantoms vs. Binghamton (PPL Center)
Monday, April 26, 6:00 – Phantoms at Binghamton (Newark, NJ)
Wednesday, April 28, 7:00 – Phantoms at Penguins

Provident Bank Pennsylvania Cup
Phantoms 8-4-1 = 17 .654
Bears 8-4-2 = 18 .643
Penguins 3-5-3 = 9 .409

Apr 21: Bears 6 – Phantoms 1
Apr 24: Penguins at Bears
Apr 25: Bears at Penguins
Apr 28: Phantoms at Penguins