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Video- Grand Rapids Griffins With A 6-1 Home Opener Win

10/16/2021 at 12:29am EDT

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - Six different Grand Rapids Griffins lit the lamp and five enjoyed two-point nights on Friday as the home team roared to its largest-ever victory in a Van Andel Arena opener, defeating the Rockford IceHogs 6-1 before a capacity crowd of 10,834.

Chase Pearson, Tyler Spezia and Dennis Yan each tallied a goal and an assist while both reigning AHL Defenseman of the Year Ryan Murphy and rookie Kirill Tyutyayev chipped in a pair of helpers, leading Grand Rapids to a win for the fifth time in its last six home debuts.

Joe Veleno scored the first goal of the 2021-22 campaign on the power play with 12:12 remaining in the opening period off Murphy’s first assist as a Griffin, but Josiah Slavin answered for Rockford at the 14:52 mark with the only goal Calvin Pickard would surrender on the night, sending it to intermission tied 1-1.

Tyutyayev notched his first point in North America by setting up Spezia’s go-ahead tally 3:14 into the second, before goals by Turner Elson at 4:20 and Hayden Verbeek at 17:11 pushed Grand Rapids’ lead to three heading into the final 20 minutes. Elson’s marker gave him 100 points (41-59--100) for his Griffins career.

A Pearson power play goal at 4:25 of the third made it a 5-1 game, and Yan wrapped up the scoring by beating Malcolm Subban with 6:58 remaining.

Game highlights are below.

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