PREVIEW: Phantoms vs. Bruins, Game #24

Saturday, December 17 at 7:05 p.m.
Lehigh Valley Phantoms (12-9-2) at Providence Bruins (15-4-6)
PPL Center, Allentown, PA

Get your throwing arms ready! It’s the annual Teddy Bear Toss presented by Big Woody’s as the Lehigh Valley Phantoms host the Providence Bruins at PPL Center. Thousands of donated stuffed animal donations will be thrown onto the ice after the Phantoms score their first goal of the game.
Tonight’s contest is a rematch from yesterday’s thrilling win in Rhode Island in which the Phantoms rallied from a 4-2 deficit to post a 5-4 victory in overtime.

Saturday, December 17, 2022

Phantoms 5 – Bruins 4 (OT)
The Lehigh Valley Phantoms pulled off a stunning comeback at Providence in a 5-4 overtime win on Friday night. Artem Anisimov scored two goals for the second game in a row including the overtime winner. Elliot Desnoyers scored his team-leading 10th goal of the season and second shorthanded marker to give the Phantoms a 2-1 lead in the second period. But Providence soon gained momentum with consecutive power-play goals and an additional 4-on-4 marker to put the Phantoms down 4-2. Anisimov’s first goal in the opening minutes of the third ot the Phantoms back into the game. Then Adam Ginning scored his first career pro goal in North America on a blast from center point with over eight minutes remaining to forge a 4-4 tie setting up the power-play winner in overtime by Anisimov.

The Philadelphia Flyers recalled forward Olle Lycksell from the Lehigh Valley Phantoms on Thursday and then brought up Kieffer Bellows to Philadelphia on Saturday.
Lycksell was in the lineup in Thursday’s 2-1 win at the New Jersey Devils in his second career NHL game. Lycksell was coming off a three-point performance last Saturday with one goal and two assists in a 6-1 thrashing of the Charlotte Checkers. The first-year pro in North America is averaging a point per game scoring 5-11-16 in 16 games with the Phantoms. The 5′ 10″ lefty shot from Oskarshamn, Sweden was a Round 6 selection of the Flyers in 2017.
Bellows has a five-game point streak with Lehigh Valley since joining the team on December 3. He has scored a goal in each of the last three games. The former first-round selection of the New York Islanders has played in 11 games with the Flyers this season.

Artem Anisimov made quite the statement in his first games since officially signing his standard player contract with the Phantoms for the remainder of the 2022-23 season with back-to-back two-goal games. He had a four-point performance last Saturday in a 6-1 rout of Charlotte and then followed that up with a two-goal game and overtime winner on Friday at Providence. The accomplished NHL veteran joined Lehigh Valley on November 15 on a tryout contract while getting back into shape following a blocked shot in the preseason with Philadelphia on September 24. The 34-year-old center has played in 771 career NHL games with the New York Rangers, Chicago, Columbus and Ottawa. His two-goal performance on November 26 against Rochester represented his first goals in the AHL in 13 years!!

– The Phantoms power play is 12/29, 41.4% over the last seven games and is 25.8% overall for 5th in the AHL.
– Tyson Foerster is on a 5-game point streak (3-5-7) and has scored 6-6-12 in the last 12 games.
– Artem Anisimov has scored four goals in the last two games and has scored 7-3-10 in just eight game since joining Lehigh Valley. In four home games, Anisimov has scored 5-3-8
– Elliot Desnoyers is third among AHL rookies with 10 goals and also leads the Phantoms in lamplighters
– The Phantoms are 8-2-2 in one-goal games. Lehigh Valley is 7-0-2 when leading after two periods.
– The Phantoms are 4-2 in decisions after regulation having gone 3-1 in overtime and 1-1 in shootouts.

Providence (15-4-6) now has the best points percentage in the AHL leapfrogging ahead of Hershey after securing one standings point on Friday. The Bruins are the only team in the league with only four regulation losses.
Lehigh Valley is 3-0-0 against the Bruins with all three wins coming in Rhode Island.
Providence has some talented rookies including Luke Toporowski (9-9-18), Fabian Lysell (8-11-19) and Georgii Merkulov (5-12-17). Goaltender Brandon Bussi is second the AHL with a .932 save percentage.
Providence is allowing 34.3 shots per game, most in the AHL.
The Bruins are 5-2-3 when they are TRAILING after two periods and are the only team in the AHL with a winning overall record in games in which they face a second-intermission deficit.

Phantoms Scoring Leaders
Tyson Foerster 8-11-19
x Olle Lycksell 5-11-16
x Cam York 3-10-13
Elliot Desnoyers 10-3-13
Garrett Wilson 5-8-13

Providence Scoring Leaders
Vinni Lettieri 10-14-24
Fabian Lysell 8-11-19
Luke Toporowski 9-9-18
Georgii Merkulov 5-12-17
Connor Carrick 2-12-14

Phantoms Tickets are available HERE

Lehigh Valley Power Play – 25.8% (5th)
Lehigh Valley Penalty Kill – 70.6% (30th)
Providence Power Play – 15.6% (28th)
Providence Penalty Kill – 80.0% (16th)

The Phantoms conclude the weekend with a Sunday 5:00 PM road tilt at rival Hershey.
Lehigh Valley will then rematch with the Hershey Bears at PPL Center on Wednesday, December 21.

Saturday, December 17 (7:05) vs. PROVIDENCE BRUINS
Sunday, December 18 (5:00) at Hershey Bears
Wednesday, December 21 (7:05) vs. HERSHEY BEARS
Friday, December 23 (7:05) at Springfield Thunderbirds

Saturday, December 17 (7:05) vs. Providence Bruins – Teddy Bear Toss Presented by Big Woody’s

Wednesday, December 21 (7:05) vs. Hershey Bears – Pregame Happy Hour, $2 Miller Lites and Yuenglings

Wednesday, December 28 (7:05) vs. Bridgeport Islanders – Pregame Happy Hour, $2 Miller Lites and Yuenglings

Saturday, December 31 (7:05) vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins – New Year’s Eve Celebration presented by Penn Community Bank. Including festivities and great fun on Hamilton Street right after the game right with the World’s Largest Puck-Drop to ring in 2023!




Broadcast coverage of all Phantoms games with Bob Rotruck is available on the Phantoms 365 app and on Real Oldies 1470-AM in Allentown. Also available on the Listen Live button at
Fans can also watch the games on or can listen on their Smart Speakers at: “Play Phantoms Radio 24/7.”