Phantoms Weekly Presented by Provident Bank — 11/20/18

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Phantoms Host Two Atlantic Division Foes At Home This Weekend

November 20, 2018

A Look Back

Wednesday, November 14, 2018 — Lehigh Valley Phantoms 3, Charlotte Checkers 2 (OT)

Wednesday night presented the Phantoms with a chance at revenge against the Charlotte Checkers inside of PPL Center.  Having lost to the Checkers the prior week, 7-4, Lehigh Valley was eager to get back on the ice against their Atlantic Division foes from the south.

A much tighter game than the one played on November 10, the two teams found themselves locked in a 2-2 tie at the end of regulation after a late Charlotte tally at the 14:42 mark of the third period.  Phantoms defenseman T.J. Brennan, who had already assisted on Phil Varone’s second-period goal earlier in the night, potted the game winner in overtime as he fired the puck past Checkers’ goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic on a two-on-one chance.  The goal was Brennan’s fifth of the season and earned him first-star honors.

Friday, November 16, 2018 — Lehigh Valley Phantoms 5, Providence Bruins 4

On Friday night, the Phantoms took on the Providence Bruins for the first time of the 2018-19 season.  While the Bruins were in last place in the Atlantic Division heading into the match up, the Phantoms quickly found themselves down 3-0 just 13 minutes into the contest.  After goaltender Carter Hart — who started his second consecutive game for just the second time this season — was relieved by backup Anthony Stolarz, the Phantoms finally broke through thanks to a greasy goal from rookie Connor Bunnaman.  Heading into the intermission however, the Bruins held a commanding 4-1 lead over the Phantoms.

Starting the second period with a 5-on-3 power play, Lehigh Valley wasted little time cutting into the Providence lead as Chris Conner netted a power-play tally just 12 seconds into the period.  Including Conner’s goal, the Phantoms scored four unanswered — including the game winner off the stick of defenseman Philippe Myers with just 4:57 remaining in the third — to rally back and defeat the Bruins 5-4 in Providence.

Saturday, November 17, 2018 — Springfield Thunderbirds 3, Lehigh Valley Phantoms 2

The Phantoms made their way to Springfield to take on the Thunderbirds on Saturday for the third time during the 2018-19 season.  A much tighter game than the one played against the Bruins a day prior, Lehigh Valley would head into the second period tied 1-1 thanks to T.J. Brennan’s sixth goal of the season at the 15:04 mark of the first period.

After a pair of Springfield goals in the third period — scored just 1:37 apart — the Phantoms needed another comeback in order to bring home two wins over the weekend. A late power-play goal by Greg Carey would cut the deficit to 3-2 with only 3:40 remaining, but the T-Birds would hang on for the win.

The Road Ahead

Friday, November 23, 2018 — Hershey Bears at Lehigh Valley Phantoms, 7:05 p.m. — TICKETS

The Lehigh Valley Phantoms will face the rival Hershey Bears for the second time this season, and the first time inside of PPL Center, on Friday night for a post-Thanksgiving game.

In the first meeting of the season on October 28, the Bears managed to post a 3-1 win over the Phantoms and since that time have a record of 4-3-0-0.  Most recently, Hershey is coming off a weekend split against the Cleveland Monsters that saw them win 6-1 on November 16 and then lose 5-2 the following night.

Phantoms forward Greg Carey tallied 11 points (5G-6A) across 12 contests against the Bears in 2017-18 and, this season, is already leading the team in goals with nine.  While he has yet to tally a point against the Bears this season, look for the Hamilton Howitzer to make an impact in this game.

Friday night will also be Rock Night featuring a special-edition Phantoms concert-themed t-shirt giveaway for the first 6,500 fans in attendance. We’ll also have rock-and-roll karaoke on the concourse so warm up your vocal cords before coming to the game and don’t forget to tune that air guitar!  Limited tickets remain for Friday’s contest against Hershey, you can purchase yours HERE.

Saturday, November 24, 2018 — Providence Bruins at Lehigh Valley Phantoms, 7:05 p.m. — TICKETS

The Phantoms take on the Providence Bruins inside of PPL Center for the second of six meetings this season on Saturday night.  Last Friday, the Phantoms rallied from a 4-1 deficit in the first period to complete the comeback and defeat the Bruins 5-4 in Providence.

The Bruins rebounded on Saturday night, taking down the Rochester Americans in the process, but as of Tuesday, remain in the basement of the Atlantic Division with a 6-8-2-0 record.  Newcomer Ryan Donato, who was sent down from Boston on November 1, is helping to bolster the Bruins attack and already has four goals and two assists for six points in just seven games.

As of Tuesday, the Phantoms were led by defenseman T.J. Brennan (6G-14A) and forward Phil Varone (6G-14A) who have both amassed 20 points on the season in just 16 games.  Along with Brennan and Varone, forward Greg Carey is the only other player on the team currently producing at more than a point-per-game rate.  In the 2017-18 season, those same three players made up three of the top four point-producing players against the Bruins.

Saturday night will feature our postgame autograph session with players, which is open for all fans coming to the game.  Limited tickets remain for the Saturday night clash against the Bruins, so get yours online by clicking HERE.

Snap Shots

Power-Play Prowess 

The Lehigh Valley Phantoms have scored at least one power-play goal in all of the team’s five previous contests, going 8 for 29 (27.6%) in the process, which includes three multi-power-play-goal games. Now with a season conversion rate of 22.7 percent, the Phantoms’ man advantage ranks fifth best in the Eastern Conference.

The 800 Club

Lehigh Valley forward Chris Conner played in his 800th professional game on Friday night against the Providence Bruins.  The 34-year-old winger also tallied his seventh goal of the season during the game and has now amassed 210 goals and 329 assists for a combined 539 points between both the AHL and NHL levels.

Killing In the Name Of

Prior to allowing a power-play goal against the Springfield Thunderbirds on Saturday, the Phantoms went seven consecutive games without allowing a tally while shorthanded.  Over the seven-game span, between October 28 and November 16, the penalty kill was 30 for 30.

Phantoms by the Numbers

  • 3: Lehigh Valley currently has three players with multiple game-winning goals: German Rubtsov (2), Chris Conner (2) and Mike Vecchione (2)
  • 9: The Lehigh Valley Phantoms have not allowed a power-play goal in nine of their 16 contests this season
  • 13: Phantoms defenseman T.J. Brennan is now just 13 goals away from taking sole possession of the record for most goals by an AHL defenseman currently held by former Phantom John Slaney who has 166
  • 68: With 68 goals in a Phantoms uniform, forward Greg Carey is now tied for ninth place in franchise history on list of all-time goals scored by a Phantoms player
  • 600: Defenseman T.J. Brennan is currently sitting at 598 AHL games played, he’s projected to play in his 600th at the AHL level on Saturday, November 24, against Providence

Recent Transactions

November 16, 2018: The Philadelphia Flyers recalled from loan goaltender Alex Lyon from the Lehigh Valley Phantoms

Broadcast Coverage

Service Electric’s TV2 Sports will again be broadcasting all of the Phantoms’ regular season home games live during the 2018-19 season. If you can’t make it out to the rink, be sure to catch all the exciting action in high definition with Steve Degler, Todd Fedoruk, Doug Heater, Dan Fremuth and Kristi Fulkerson!

And be sure to catch each and every Phantoms game this season live on 1470-AM WSAN, 790-AM WAEB or via the Phantoms365 app!  Join the Voice of the Phantoms, Bob Rotruck, for all of the heart-pumping action of Lehigh Valley Phantoms hockey whether the team is at home or on the road.

Ticket Information

Tickets for each and every Phantoms home game throughout the 2018-19 season are available online at, by calling 610-347-TIXX [8499] or in-person at the QNB Box Office [7th & Hamilton].