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BARONS WEEKLY RECAP

By Jim Byers,

Recap of Week 19, Feb. 9-11 (2 games, 2-0-0-0)
Season record: 32-12-2-3, 1st, West Division, +7 pts.

THE WEEK PAST: The Barons swept a pair of games in western Canada with 4-0 and 2-1 wins over the Abbotsford Heat. Yann Danis turned in his fifth shutout of the season in Thursday’s blanking of the Heat at Scotiabank Saddledome, home of the Heat’s parent Calgary Flames. OKC also won the 2010-11 meeting between the clubs in Calgary. Rookie defenseman Kirill Tulupov’s first North American professional goal at 11:06 of the third on Saturday in Abbotsford snapped a 1-1 deadlock and sent the Barons to a 2-1 decision in the final regular season matchup between the teams. OKC ended the week with a 7-point West Division lead over Houston with a conference-high 69 points.

THE WEEK AHEAD: After 3 straight 2-game weeks, the Barons play 3 consecutive home games this Friday through Sunday at the Cox Convention Center. It’s the Barons’ eighth of 12 sets of 3 games in 3 nights this season and the second involving all home contests. Milwaukee makes its first OKC appearance of the season for 7 pm starts on Friday and Saturday. On Nov. 13, the Admirals beat the Barons 3-2 in only previous meeting this season. The San Antonio Rampage make their last regular-season trip to OKC for a late Sunday afternoon 4 pm start on the 19th.

DANIS ON A TEAR: All-Star goaltender Yann Danis compiled a club-record shutout streak over parts of 4 starts from Jan. 27-Feb. 11 totaling 173 minutes, 16 seconds. It stretched from a third-period goal vs. Houston Jan. 27 through consecutive shutouts Feb. 2 and Feb. 9 into the third period Feb. 11 at Abbotsford when Ben Walter snapped the streak. Danis leads the league in goals-against average (1.94) and save percentage (.928), is second in shutouts (5) and tied for second in wins (21). He’s not a one-man show, as the Barons’ David LeNeveu is second in GAA at 2.06 and tied for sixth in save percentage (.923). Since Jan. 1, Danis is 8-3-0 with 3 shutouts, a 1.23 GAA and .946 save percentage. LeNeveu is 3-2-0 in that span with a 1.62 and .935.


CHART-TOPPERS: Entering this week, the Barons have the AHL’s best standing point percentage (.704). OKC shares the league high in wins (32) with the Eastern Conference-leading St. John’s IceCaps, who have played 1 more game.  The Barons’ 69 points are second only to the IceCaps’ 70. OKC has allowed the league’s fewest goals (104) and averages a league-best 2.12 goals allowed per game. The Barons’ overall penalty killing percentage (87.0) and home PK rate (89.9) are AHL bests.

GREEN MEANS GO: Josh Green has equaled a club record with points in 10 straight games. Alex Giroux set the mark with a 10-game point streak last season from Feb. 27-Apr. 8.  Green has 4 goals and 7 assists during the streak, which started Dec. 27 and resumed Jan. 27 after a 3-week stint with Edmonton. With Green in the lineup, the Barons are 17-5-1-2, a .740 point percentage.

RANKING MEMBERS: All-Star winger Philippe Cornet is tied for eighth in the AHL in goals (21) and part of a group sharing the league lead in game-winners (6). Cornet and teammate Triston Grant are 1-2 in the league in shooting percentage. Cornet’s 21 goals have come on 70 shots (30.0), while Grant, who returned this week after being out with an injury since Dec. 31, has 8 tallies on 34 shots (23.5). St. John’s center Riley Holzapfel is also connecting at 23.5%. Ryan Keller is fifth in plus-minus (+21), while Ryan O’Marra is tied for 11th at +15. Hunter Tremblay is tied for second in shorthanded goals with 4.


GO WEST: OKC wrapped its season series with Abbotsford by taking 6 of 8 from the Heat and all 4 in western Canada. The Barons  are 9-3-0-0 in 2 AHL seasons against the Heat and stand undefeated in 6 games out west, winning twice in Calgary and 4 times at Abbotsford. Nine of the 12 games all-time between the clubs have featured a game-winning goal in the third period or overtime.

This week’s games (times listed as Central)
Date                Opponent       Time   Arena                                      Radio
February 17    Milwaukee       7 pm    Cox Convention Center          KXY 96.1 FM
February 18    Milwaukee       7 pm    Cox Convention Center          KXY 96.1 FM
February 19    San Antonio    4 pm    Cox Convention Center          KXY 96.1 FM

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