The Grand Rapids Griffins open their 5-game first-round series against the Manitoba Moose today (3 PM EDT start on The AHL Live and ESPN 96.1 FM).
Ahead of today’s game, the Grand Rapids Press’s Peter J. Wallner posted a set of “Things to Know and Thoughts to Ponder”:
GRIFFINS VS. MOOSE: The Griffins won six of eight against Manitoba, including all four in Winnipeg, and outscored them 26-17. One of the losses, however, was 7-2 at Van Andel Arena in October. It was the most allowed by the Griffins at home since April 18, 2015. On the flipside, the Griffins’ 5-0 win on Feb. 17 was Manitoba’s largest margin of defeat.
Individually, four players have six players against them: Turner Elson (2-4-6), Axel Holmstrom (2-4-6), Colin Campbell (1-5-6) and Evgeny Svechnikov (1-5-6).
The Moose are just 17-17-2-2 at home. They averaged just under 5,300 at the 8,812-seat Bell MTS Place in downtown Winnipeg.
GOAL SPREADER: Coach Todd Nelson looked around at his offense and it reminded the Griffins’ third-year coach of his Oklahoma City team from 2012-13.
“They scored by committee and that worked out,” he said of the Barons, who had eight players with at least 13 goals and the team made the conference finals.
The Griffins, without Matt Lorito and Dominic Turgeon for the postseason, still have the league’s fourth-leading goal scorer in Eric Tangradi (31-33-64), their top points leader in Ben Street (21-44-65) and two others with 20-plus goals in Matt Puempel (23-34-57 in 59 games) and Matthew Ford (22-16-38).
The Griffins took the third-most shots in the league with 32 a game.