2007-08 RECORD: 46-26-2-6, 100 points, (27-9-1-3 home, 19-17-1-3 road), second place, North Division
THIS WEEK'S GAMES
Tuesday, April 22 @ Manitoba (46-27-3-4, 99 points) third place, North Division
Friday, April 25 @ Manitoba (46-27-3-4, 99 points) third place, North Division
Saturday, April 26 @ Manitoba (46-27-3-4, 99 points) third place, North Division
LAST WEEK'S RESULT
Friday, April 18 - CRUNCH 2, Manitoba 1
Saturday, April 19 - Manitoba 3, CRUNCH 2
HOME TEAM IN CAPS
CRUNCH AND MOOSE EVEN AT 1-1: If you were trying to find two teams in the American Hockey League more evenly matched than Syracuse Crunch and the Manitoba Moose, you would be hard-pressed to do so.
After the first two games of their North Division Semi-final Series, both teams have come away with a win. Both games have needed overtime to decide a winner. The Crunch have a slight 67-66 shots advantage in the series.
Both teams play a brash, in-your-face style of hockey and neither team backs down from a challenge. Both teams have a good mix of skill and grit and good goaltending. During the regular season, these two teams split the season series 2-2. Manitoba held the advantage in total goals, 12-11.
DEFENSEMEN CONTRIBUTING OFFENSIVELY: The Crunch have gotten significant offensive contributions from their defensemen in the first two games of this series.
Three out of Syracuse's four goals so far in the playoffs have come from blueliners. Experienced veteran David Cullen leads all players in the series with three points (1g, 2a). Rookie Andrei Plekhanov has two points (1g, 1a). Duvie Westcott's goal with six minutes left on Saturday forced overtime.
Joakim Lindstrom is the only Crunch forward to score a goal in the series. He notched the overtime-winner Friday night.
THIS WEEK'S OPPONENTS:
MANITOBA MOOSE (VANCOUVER CANUCKS): The Crunch travel west to Winnipeg as their North Division Semifinal Series shifts to the MTS Centre for games three, four and five on April 22, 25 and 26, respectively. The Crunch and Moose split the season series 2-2, with both teams winning their respective home games. The Crunch are 11-11-2 all-time against Manitoba during the regular season. Crunch leading scorer and 2008 AHL All-Star Joakim Lindstrom led all Crunch players in head-to-head scoring during the regular season with 5 points (3g, 2a), and has 2 points (1g, 1a) in the first two games of this series, including the overtime-winning goal in Game One. Crunch defenseman David Cullen leads all players in the first two games of the series with 3 points (1g, 2a). Jason Jaffray (4g, 1a) and Jimmy Sharrow (1g, 4a), led all Moose players with 5 points each during the regular season series. Nine different players have recorded at least a point for Manitoba in the series thus far.
SYRACUSE CRUNCH DAY DECLARED IN ONONDAGA COUNTY: The Syracuse Crunch announced Saturday that County Executive Joanne M. Mahoney declared April 19, 2008 as 'Syracuse Crunch Day' in Onondaga County.
Mahoney, who was on-hand at Saturday's North Division Semifinal Game Two between the Crunch and Manitoba Moose, formally announced the proclamation in a pre-game ceremony. In addition, Mahoney participated in a ceremonial puck drop prior to the start of the game.
CRUNCHABLES: The Crunch were the only team in the AHL to finish the regular season in the top five in both the power play (20.6%, fifth) and penalty killing (86.0%, fourth)... Syracuse finished the 2007-08 campaign with the second most points in franchise history (100)… It was only the second time in the team's 14-year history that it has reached the 45-win and 100-point plateau… The Crunch had 13 players record 20 points or more this season… Joakim Lindstrom's overtime-winner in Game One was his first game-winning goal of the post-season…He led the Crunch with seven (7) game-winners during the regular season… The Crunch had a total of six (6) rookies make their AHL playoff debuts this past weekend and fifteen (15) players made their playoff debuts as a member of the Crunch.