CALDER CUP UPDATE:
Chris Armstrong and Jason Krog scored in the first 98 seconds of the second period to break open a 1-1 tie and propel Bridgeport to a 5-2 win over Hamilton on Friday night. The Sound Tigers now lead the Eastern Conference final series, three games to one. Bridgeport outshot the Bulldogs 39-18, including 31-8 through the first two periods. Justin Mapletoft, Dave Roche and Trent Hunter also scored for the Sound Tigers.
Bridgeport can wrap up the Richard F. Canning Trophy and advance to the Calder Cup 2002 Finals with a win in Game 5 tonight (7:30 ET)… Only nine teams have ever played for the Calder Cup in their first AHL season… Sound Tigers rookies Justin Mapletoft and Raffi Torres each extended his point-scoring streak to eight games with two points in Game 4… Bridgeport’s Eric Godard recorded his fourth assist of the postseason on Friday; he had four assists in his previous 113 AHL games… Kevin Brown assisted on both Hamilton goals in Game 4, and has recorded a point on seven of the Bulldogs’ nine goals in the series… Hamilton has taken just 80 shots on goal in the first four games of the series… The ’Dogs were scoreless in four power play chances on Friday, their first 0-fer of the postseason.
Pasi Nurminen made 34 saves, 28 over the final two periods, as Chicago took a 3-1 series lead with a 2-1 decision over Houston on Friday. It was the Wolves’ fifth straight home win, and left Chicago one victory away from the Calder Cup Finals. Bob Nardella and J.P. Vigier scored for the Wolves, who improved to 12-3 in Game 2 and beyond during these playoffs. Travis Roche provided the only Aeros offense with a third-period goal, his second of the series.
Kamil Piros assisted on both Chicago goals… Houston was 0-for-5 on the power play, extending their drought to 27 straight unsuccessful chances, including 0-for-23 in the series… Brendan Yarema assisted on the Aeros’ lone goal in Game 4, giving him a point in six straight games… Jamie McLennan made 27 saves but was saddled with the loss… The Allstate Arena crowd of 7,035 on Friday night was the third-largest in the AHL this postseason… Game 5 is Sunday afternoon back in Rosemont (2:00 CT), where the Wolves are 8-2 in the playoffs.
Game 5 – Bridgeport at Hamilton, 7:30
FROM CALDER TO STANLEY:
The Colorado Avalanche and Detroit Red Wings begin the NHL’s Western Conference Final on Saturday afternoon at Joe Louis Arena. Avs goaltender Patrick Roy was all of 19 years old when he backstopped the Sherbrooke Canadiens to the 1985 Calder Cup championship; a year later, Roy was in Montreal, winning the first of his four Stanley Cups and three Conn Smythe Trophies. Roy’s AHL teammates in ’85 included Stephane Richer, Brian Skrudland and current Montreal head coach Michel Therrien.