CALDER CUP UPDATE:
The Chicago Wolves are on the verge of winning the 66th Calder Cup championship as they host the Bridgeport Sound Tigers in Game 5 tonight (7:00 CT, 8:00 ET). Chicago extended its home-ice winning streak to eight games with a 4-2 win in Game 4 on Friday, taking a 3-1 series lead and sending the Sound Tigers, who finished first overall in the regular season, to the brink of elimination. Bridgeport is 1-0 when facing elimination this spring; Chicago is 4-2 with a chance to win a series.
Rob Brown, a leading candidate for the Jack Butterfield Trophy as MVP of the Calder Cup 2002 Playoffs, recorded two power play goals and an assist on Friday night, bringing his league-leading totals up to 23 assists and 30 points. Brown, who scored 49 goals and 115 points for the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1988-89, has picked up 5+15=20 pts. in the last 10 games… Pasi Nurminen, a 2002 Finnish Olympian, is 9-1 with a 1.10 GAA and a .961 save percentage in 10 home playoff games for the Wolves… Andreas Karlsson has 16 points in the last 10 contests after recording three points in his first 12 games this postseason… Sound Tigers rookie Justin Mapletoft, a team-leading plus-9 in the conference final against Hamilton, is minus-6 in the finals…
Bridgeport has not lost three consecutive games since Dec. 28-30… The Sound Tigers have held the opposition to just 239 shots on goal over the last 11 games, but have allowed 29 goals (.879)… Win or lose, this is the Wolves’ last home game of the season; Chicago was 19-17-4 on home ice in the regular season, and 11-2 thus far in the playoffs… The Wolves have outscored their opponents by a 31-8 margin during their current eight-game home winning streak… Chicago is playing its 25th playoff game and 105th game overall this season, both AHL records; Bridgeport is playing its 20th and 100th, respectively… Tonight’s Allstate Arena crowd will be one of the largest in AHL playoff history… All the action of Game 5 can be heard via cybercast by following the links at caldercup.com.
Calder Cup 2002 Final Bridgeport vs. Chicago Game 1 - Chicago 5, BRIDGEPORT 4 (OT) Game 2 - BRIDGEPORT 2, Chicago 1 Game 3 - CHICAGO 4, Bridgeport 0 Game 4 - CHICAGO 4, Bridgeport 2 Game 5 - Mon 6/3 at Chicago, 7:00 *Game 6 - Thu 6/6 at Bridgeport, 7:05 *Game 7 - Fri 6/7 at Bridgeport, 7:35 (Chicago leads series, 3-1) *if necessary… All times local
BY THE NUMBERS:
53 – Years since a team rallied from a 3-1 deficit to win a best-of-seven Calder Cup Final… The 1949 Providence Reds, 1947 Hershey Bears and 1946 Buffalo Bisons are the only teams to accomplish the feat in the AHL’s championship series.
9 – Years since a lower-seeded team upset a higher seed in a Calder Cup Final series… The 1993 Cape Breton Oilers (whose GM Dave Andrews now serves as AHL president) are the last team to win the Calder Cup without having the home-ice advantage in the championship series, defeating Rochester in five games.
FROM CALDER TO STANLEY:
The Detroit Red Wings and Carolina Hurricanes face off in the 2002 Stanley Cup Finals, beginning Tuesday night at Joe Louis Arena. Brett Hull, who leads Detroit with eight playoff goals, won the Dudley “Red” Garrett Award as the AHL’s top rookie in 1986-87, the same year teammate Uwe Krupp won the Calder Cup with Rochester. Wings forward Kirk Maltby captured an AHL championship in 1993.
ON THE AIR:
*Game 6 – Chicago at Bridgeport – AT&T Broadband (Chicago) – 6:05 CT
*Game 7 – Chicago at Bridgeport – AT&T Broadband (Chicago) – 6:35 CT
AHL RINKSIDE Sun 6/9 Fox Sports Net Pittsburgh, 12:00 pm ET Empire Sports Network, 6:30 pm ET Tue 6/11 Empire Sports Network, 4:00 pm ET Sat 6/15 New England Sports Network, 1:30 pm ET