By Jim Byers, on 03/14/2014

 Grand Rapids Griffins (37-18-2-4) at Oklahoma City Barons (29-24-1-7)    

Barons Game 62  |  Home Game 30 |  AHL Game 899
March 14, 2014, 7:00 pm CDT  | Cox Convention Center, Oklahoma City, OK
Radio: KXY 96.1 FM,
 Media Kit Link:

TONIGHT: The Barons play the first of back-to-back games against the Grand Rapids Griffins (Detroit Red Wings) in a rematch of the 2013 Western Conference Finals. It’s the Griffins’ first visit to Oklahoma City since Games 3-5 of last spring’s 7-game set, which Grand Rapids won en route to a Calder Cup championship. The teams split a pair of games at Van Andel Arena Feb. 21-22, with the Barons taking the first 4-2 before dropping the second 4-3. Grand Rapids is tied with Texas for the Western Conference lead with 80 points. OKC is tied for 8th in points with 66.

The Barons enter tonight’s game on a club-record 9-game home unbeaten streak, with 8 wins and 1 shootout loss in their last 9 at the Cox Center. Overall, OKC is unbeaten in regulation in its last 7 contests, going 6-0-0-1 in that span. The club record unbeaten string of 8 games (7-0-0-1) was set from Jan. 30-Feb. 21 and ended with a 4-3 loss to the Griffins Feb. 22 at Van Andel Arena. The Barons have also won their last 4 home games, matching their season high. A win tonight would equal the franchise record for consecutive home wins (5) set from Feb. 1-26, 2013.

OKC is 5-0-0-1 in March, 13-2-0-2 in the last 17 and 18-7-0-2 since the first of the year. On Jan. 30, when the 13-2-0-2 run began, the Barons were 14th in the Western Conference with 38 points, 8 back of the final playoff spot. Entering tonight they’re tied for eighth in the conference in points with Milwaukee (66), 2 points behind seventh-place Rockford and 3 back of sixth-place Rochester. Milwaukee and Rochester have played 2 fewer games than OKC, while Rockford has played 1 more. Richard Bachman has started 16 of the past 17 games, going 12-2-2 in that span. Since Feb. 2, when Mark Arcobello made his season debut with the Barons, OKC is 12-2-0-2 and 22-for-72 (30.6 percent) on the power play. The power play was tied for 11th in the AHL at 18.6 percent on Feb. 2 when Arcobello made his debut. Entering tonight, it’s tied for second at 21.8. The Barons have scored a tying or winning goal in the final 4:10 of regulation time (or OT) in 5 of the past 7 games.

Captain Anton Lander has been recalled to Edmonton twice in the past week, most recently on Wednesday. In between recalls, neither of which has resulted in him suiting up for an Oilers game yet this month, he scored a goal and had 2 assists in Tuesday’s 5-2 win over San Antonio in OKC’s most recent outing. Lander leads the Barons with 48 points, including 18 goals, in 43 games.

HOME HEAVY: Including tonight, OKC has 15 games left in the regular season, 9 at home and 6 on the road. OKC is 17-9-1-2 at home and 12-15-0-5 on the road. Tomorrow ends of stretch with 9 games in 16 days since Feb. 28. The remaining trips are stand-alone 2-game sets at Texas, Charlotte and Abbotsford.

Mark Arcobello has points in all 13 games with OKC since being loaned by Edmonton in early February and 26 points as a Baron this season. His 26 points (9 goals, 17 assists) are the most in the AHL dating to Feb. 2, when he played his first Barons game of this season. Arcobello’s 13-game point streak is a club record, the longest active streak in the AHL and tied for the longest of the season league-wide. Arcobello has goals in 8 of his 13 contests and 10 multi-point games. He spent the first 4 months of the season with the Oilers, collecting 4 goals and 14 assists in 41 games. He finished last season tied for third in the AHL with 68 points.

is fifth in points by an AHL defenseman with 42. He has already set the club record for assists in a season by a defenseman with 32, surpassing Justin Schultz’s 30 last season. Hunt is closing in on the franchise record for points in a season by a defenseman (48), set in 34 games by Schultz during his Eddie Shore Defenseman of the Year campaign last season. In his first full professional season with the Chicago Wolves last year, Hunt had 4 goals and 29 assists in 65 games.

Last 5 Games:
Date       Opp.      Result     OKC Goalie (GA, SV) Opp. Goalie              Attn.
Mar. 2     SA          W, 6-5      Bunz (5, 31)                  Houser (6, 25)             2,576
Mar. 5     @ Utica  SOL, 3-4  Bachman (3, 30)            Eriksson (3, 32)           2,808
Mar. 7     @ Ham   W, 2-1      Bachman (1, 23)            Dubnyk (2, 38)            4,407
Mar. 9     @ Rch    OTW, 5-4  Bachman (4, 13)            Hackett (5, 27)            5,202
Mar. 11   SA          W, 5-2      Bachman (2, 37)            Clemmensen (5, 28)    2,591 

Next 5 games (all times Central):
Date        Opp.         Site                                  Time       Broadcast
March 15 GR            Cox Center                       7:00 pm   KXY 96.1 FM
March 21 @ Texas    Cedar Park Center            7:30 pm   KXY 96.1 FM
March 22 @ Texas    Cedar Park Center            7:00 pm   KXY 96.1 FM
March 25 SA             Cox Center                       7:00 pm   KXY 96.1 FM
March 29 @ Cha       Time Warner Cable Arena 6:00 pm   KXY 96.1 FM 

(return to articles...)

This Article has been viewed: 759 times