The Malik Report
by George Malik on 10/27/13 at 01:35 AM ET
The Grand Rapids Griffins have had a pretty bumpy start to their season, but the Griffins may be starting to turn things around. The team rallied from a 2-1 deficit to defeat the Chicago Wolves 3-2 at the Allstate Arena on Saturday night, bouncing back from a 5-0 loss to Charlotte on Friday.
They'll continue their slate of 3 games in 3 nights (they lost to Charlotte on Friday) when they travel to Des Moines, Iowa to tangle with the Wild tomorrow night, and by the time they head back to Grand Rapids on Monday morning, the team will have endured a little over a thousand miles on their bus.
The Griffins' website provides a game recap:
The Grand Rapids Griffins continued their road game point streak with a 3-2 win over the Chicago Wolves on Saturday at the Allstate Arena. The win marked the fifth consecutive away game in which the Griffins have earned at least one point.
The Griffins (3-2-1-1) opened up scoring with a goal by Teemu Pulkkinen at 8:59. Cory Emmerton rushed the net and passed to Pulkkinen, who buried the puck above Wolves netminder Matt Climie’s right shoulder.
At 17:53, Chicago (3-4-0-1) evened the score as forward Corey Locke took off on a breakaway and backhanded a shot that deflected off the crossbar and into the net.
Seven seconds into the middle frame, Adam Almquist headed to the box for boarding and exactly two minutes later, Landon Ferraro was called for the same penalty. Despite four consecutive minutes with a man in the box, the Griffins killed off both penalties to keep the score knotted.
Griffins forward Andrej Nestrasil was called for slashing at 11:30 of the second period, and the Grand Rapids penalty kill couldn’t hold up against a slap shot from defenseman Brent Regner as he buried the puck from the right point at 12:40.
However, the Wolves lead didn’t last long. Ten seconds later, Ferraro poked the puck from a scramble along the boards to Calle Jarnkrok, who scored to tie the game 2-2.
Minutes later, Wolves forward Mark Mancari threw the puck from Chicago’s crease into the boards and the Griffins subsequently were awarded a penalty shot. Martin Frk’s shot was stopped with a left pad save.
With 40 seconds remaining in the second period, Grand Rapids took advantage of a power play and Jurco one-timed the go-ahead tally. Gustav Nyquist earned an assist on the goal in his return to the lineup after missing Friday’s game with an undisclosed ailment.
Tom McCollum stopped 32 of 34 in the win, and Climie turned away 23 of 26.
Grand Rapids will take on the Iowa Wild at 6:05 p.m. EDT on Sunday at Wells Fargo Arena.
The Chicago Tribune's Paul LaTour posted a recap with Wolves quotes:
"It's frustrating," Wolves center Keith Aucoin said. "We have the talent and the skill to get the job done. We just have to figure out a way to do it. It's still early, but pretty soon you can't say it's too early."
Corey Locke and Brent Regner scored for the Wolves. Locke beat Tom McCollum high on a breakaway to tie the game 1-1 with less than three minutes left in the first period.
Midway through the second, Regner's power-play goal gave the Wolves a 2-1 lead. It lasted 10 seconds before Calle Jarnkrok tied it again.
Jurco's game-winning goal came only four minutes after Wolves goalie Matt Climie stoned Martin Frk with a pad save on a penalty shot. Climie made 23 saves, but fell to 0-3.
McCollum stopped Alexandre Bolduc and Shane Harper on breakaways about three minutes apart in the third period as the Wolves pressed for the tying goal. McCollum finished with 32 saves.
"Four breakaways, we don't score on any. That's the difference in the game," Wolves coach John Anderson said. "If we finish on some of our chances, the whole complexion of the game changes."
In the ECHL, the Toledo Walleye had a superb home opener. Trevor Parkes didn't register a point after taking six shots and Max Nicastro took one, and Jared Coreau sat out the game, but the Walleye defeated Wheeling 2-0. The Walleye's website provides an abbreviated recap...
After two periods of scoreless hockey the Walleye finally broke through on a goal by forward Kevin Lynch just 21 seconds into the third. Forward Scott Arnold followed with a rebound goal eight minutes later to give the Walleye a 2-0 lead. The Fish held on to win their second straight home ice opener and improve to 2-0-1-0 on the season. Toledo netminder Mac Carruth was spectacular in his Huntington Center debut, stopping all 30 Nailers shots on goal.
Both teams had plenty of chances in the first two periods of play, but neither squad could capitalize. Lynch, who scored both Walleye goals in Toledo's 3-2 overtime loss in Cincinnati on Thursday, was assisted by Russ Sinkewich and Travis Novak. Scott Arnold rebounded a post shot by Lynch at the 8:36 mark for his second goal on the young season.
Mac Carruth has now won both games that he has been in the net for Toledo, stopping 62 of the 65 (.954%) shots that have come his way,
8,200 fans packed the Huntington Center on Opening Night - tying the second largest single-game crowd in franchise history.
As well as a highlight clip...
The Toledo Blade's Mark Monroe posted a recap as well, and it sounds like Jared Coreau will have an uphill battle in attempting to unseat Mac Carruth:
“He was very big,” Vitucci said. “That is what you expect out of a goalie — make the routine saves and then make five or six big saves and he gives you a chance to win.”
Toledo had six shots in the second period but Emerson Clark had two point-blank shots late in the stanza. Nailer goalie Mike Condon, who finished with 27 saves, had to be very good in the third to prevent more than the two goals.
Lynch also scored both of Toledo's goals in a 3-2 loss to Cincinnati on Thursday, including his first as a pro.
“We were trying to make too cute of plays [in the first two periods],” Lynch said.
Carruth made nine saves in the first period, 14 in the second, and seven in the third.
“We might have let up a bit in the second but came out hard in the third,” Carruth said.
Toledo outshot Wheeling 12-9 in a scoreless first period.
Walleye forward Trevor Parkes, the team's scoring leader coming into the game with one goal and two assists, had five shots on goal over the first 15 minutes and finished with six.
Earlier on Saturday, in Sweden, Mattias Backman's Linkopings HC and Mattias Janmark's AIK Stockholm tangled, and Linkopings HC came out on top.
Backman registered an assist in 21:21 of ice time as LHC defeated AIK 3-1. Janmark didn't register a point but took 2 shots in 19:30 of ice time;
In the J20 SuperElit league, Rasmus Bodin didn't play in Linkopings HC's J20 team's 5-2 win over Sodertalje;
And Hampus Melen didn't play for Tingsryds IF on Saturday, either, and that was a good thing as Tingsryds lost 8-0 to Rogle BK;
Back over on this side of the pond, in the QMJHL, Victoriaville Tigres forward Phillipe Hudon was suspended indefinitely for an illegal check to the head delivered in Friday's 5-3 loss to Drummondville;
In the OHL, the Saginaw Spirit and goaltender Jake Paterson came out on top of a battle against Andreas Athanasiou and the Barrie Colts, with Paterson stopping 25 of 26 shots as the Spirit defeated Barrie 4-1. Athanasiou didn't finish with a point and he was a -2;
In the WHL, Mitchell Wheaton finished at a +1 in the Kelowna Rockets' 2-1 shootout win over the Victoria Cougars;
In the BCHL, David Pope didn't play in the West Kelowna Warriors' 3-2 OT loss to Langley;
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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.