11/03/2008 3:15 PM
Last Week’s Results
We Propose a Toast: This Friday’s game against the Lake Erie Monsters at Van Andel Arena marks the return of the Griffins’ popular Dollar Beers, Dollar Dogs promotion. For all 15 Friday games this season, fans can enjoy $1 hot dogs and $1 domestic drafts from 6-8 p.m., while supplies last. Friday is College Night presented by McFadden’s Restaurant and Saloon, as college students can visit the box office to purchase a lower bowl ticket for just $10 with a valid student ID. Finally, Library Night returns for all Friday games as well, enabling fans who present a public library card from the Grand Rapids Public Library or Kent District Library at the box office to purchase a lower bowl ticket for $10 (limit four per card).
All Good Things Must End: The Griffins’ 5-4 loss to Milwaukee on Saturday snapped both their seven-game point streak (4-0-2-1) to start the season and their run as the AHL’s only team without a regulation loss. Their nine-game point streak that dated to the final two games of last season (6-0-2-1) was their longest since a franchise-record 11-game winning streak from March 5-31, 2006.
Sprinting From the Gate: Despite going winless in three games last week, the Griffins (4-1-2-1) are still tied for the fourth-best start in the franchise’s 13-year history, as their 11 points through eight games rank only two points behind the pacesetting 2000-01 club (6-1-1 for 13 points).
Feast or Famine: After totaling 19 goals in a three-game span (Oct. 19-26) – scoring at least six goals in three consecutive games for the first time ever – the Griffins totaled seven goals while posting a 0-1-1-1 record last week.
Chart Toppers: The Griffins are averaging 4.13 goals per game to rank second in the league and 34.75 shots per game to place third…Grand Rapids’ penalty killers have denied 17 straight opponent power play chances over the last three-plus games to climb to sixth in the AHL (89.5%, 34-38).
Muskegon Mogul: Justin Abdelkader on Monday was named the Reebok Edge/AHL Rookie of the Month for October. The 21 year old scored a team-high seven goals and added two assists for nine points in seven games. He tied for the AHL rookie lead in goals and points for the month, while ranking among the league’s overall leaders in goals (T2nd), power play goals (three, T7th) and shooting percentage (0.500, T1st). The Muskegon, Mich., native and former Michigan State Spartan scored his first goal in his AHL debut on Oct. 11 at Lake Erie and lit the lamp in five of the month’s seven contests, including Oct. 26 against Norfolk when he netted his first professional hat trick. Abdelkader became the first Griffin in five and a half years and just the second ever to win the AHL’s Rookie of the Month award, following Tomas Kopecky’s honor for February 2003.
Lein On Me: Left wing Ville Leino continues to pace Grand Rapids and rank among the AHL’s leaders with nine assists (T3rd) and 13 points (T5th) in just eight games. He has registered points in all but one game this season, including a pair of three-assist efforts and two more two-point outings.
Player of the Week Nominee: Landon Wilson earned the Griffins’ nomination for the Reebok/AHL Player of the Week award today after totaling three goals in as many games last week, highlighted by his Saturday performance when he netted two power play tallies in a 20-second span against Milwaukee.
Jump on Them Early: Grand Rapids has outgunned its opponents 15-8 in the first period but has been outscored 19-18 from the second period on.
Putting up the Points: Seven Griffins continue to average at least one point per game: Ville Leino (4-9—13), Justin Abdelkader (7-2—9), Mattias Ritola (4-5—9), Landon Wilson (5-3—8), Darren Haydar (3-5—8), Darren Helm (0-7—7 in six games) and Francis Pare (2-1—3 in three games).
Milestones: With his 237th regular-season Griffins game on Saturday, Ryan Oulahen passed Todd Nelson for eighth place on the Griffins’ all-time games played list. Next in his sights is seventh-place Tomas Kopecky (243)…Darren Haydar needs three assists for 300 as a pro.
Alumni News: Former Grand Rapids forward Krys Kolanos (2006-07) was recalled by the Minnesota Wild from Houston today. Should he skate in Minnesota’s game at San Jose on Tuesday, he will become the 96th Griffins alumnus to play in the NHL.
Fri., Nov. 7 vs. Lake Erie Monsters (4-5-0-1) – Van Andel Arena – 7 p.m.
Sat., Nov. 8 at Peoria Rivermen (5-4-1-0) – Peoria Civic Center-Carver Arena – 8 p.m.
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