The Malik Report
by George Malik on 05/07/14 at 11:28 PM ET
The Red Wings' pair of prospects playing in Major Junior Hockey championship series both played well--for the second night in a row--but they experienced very different results (and this is another one of those, "I will post more stories as they become available" entries):
In the OHL, Tyler Bertuzzi scored a goal, added an assist and finished at +2 as his Guelph Storm routed the Brampton Battalion 10-1, taking a 3-games-to-1 lead in the Robertson Cup Final. Bertuzzi's registered 10 goals, 7 assists and 17 points in 17 playoff games played, and his Storm can wrap up the OHL title on Friday in Guelph.
The sleeping giant rousted, with the Guelph Storm getting goals from nine players in a 10-1 Game 4 win that opened a 3-1 OHL final lead over the North Bay Battalion.
Pius Suter (2G, +2) got the icebreaker and tallied a short-hander after a ghastly giveaway, which was sandwiched around Winnipeg Jets signing Scott Kosmachuk (1G-3A, +4) breaking a five-game goalless drought. The last 40 minutes were played pretty much for show and sending messages, with Guelph earning a chance to clinch on Friday.
"I think it was about time," Kosmachuk, who led Guelph with 101 points in thev regular season, said. "We were eventually going to break through. They're a great team. They work really hard.
"It felt great to play well in both games here. One more win and we win the OHL championship."
The Battalion crowd of 4,242 gave goalie Jake Smith a standing ovation when he was relieved after the Storm went ahead 7-0 in the second period. There was another ovation after time mercifully expired and the Battalion skated off the Memorial Gardens sheet for perhaps the final time in this storybook season.
"We owe all the fans another game here," Battalion captain Barclay Goodrow said. "They've been great all playoffs and all seaon. When we were losing 9-1, they're still rooting for us and cheering us on. I think we owe it to them to bring it back here for Game 6."
In the QMJHL, Anthony Mantha had another superb individual performance, scoring 2 goals for the second night in a row (via DRW Prospects on Twitter, you can watch last night's Mantha highlights on YouTube)--this time the game's first and a short-handed, go-ahead marker scored with 4:14 left in the 3rd period--but less than a minute after Mantha gave Val-d'Or the lead, Baie-Comeau tied the game, and the Drakkar won 4-3 in overtime, tying the President's Cup series at 2 games apiece.
Mantha now has 22 goals, 10 assists and 32 points over the course of 21 playoff games played, but the series shifts back to Baie-Comeau on Friday, and Val-d'Or was out-shot 50-42 on Tuesday, so they've met their offensive match in a team that also plays stifling defense (by QMJHL standards, anyway).
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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.