By Jim Byers, on 04/13/2012

Houston Aeros (33-24-5-11) at Oklahoma City Barons (43-21-4-5)
Barons Game 74 |  Home Game 38 |  AHL Game 1106
April 13, 2012, 7 pm CDT  | Cox Convention Center, Oklahoma City, OK
Broadcast: KXY 96.1 FM

TONIGHT: The Barons open the last weekend of the regular season with their 38th and final home game as they host the Houston Aeros (Minnesota Wild). OKC has 6 wins and a shootout loss against Houston this season, with a 3-0-0-0 mark at the Cox Center. The Barons, who have already clinched the West Division, are tied with Toronto for the Western Conference lead with 95 points. The Marlies have 2 games remaining, both at Abbotsford. OKC has 3 games in 3 days left, including tonight. Houston is part of a group tied for sixth in the conference with 82 points.

OFF THE TOP: The Barons enter tonight’s game having dropped 2 straight, 3 of 4 and 4 of 6, all in regulation. Their 2-game losing streak involves a pair of home defeats, 3-0 on Saturday against Chicago and 3-1 vs. Peoria on Friday. It’s just the third time all season the Barons have lost back-to-back games in regulation. The other times were Nov. 12-13 vs. Charlotte/at Milwaukee and Jan. 6-8 at Toronto and Hamilton. The Barons have at least 1 standing point in 11 of the last 15 games and 12 of their past 17. The Barons and Toronto Marlies, who have won 12 of their last 14, share the Western Conference lead with 95 points, the second-highest total in the league behind Norfolk (107). OKC’s point percentage (.651) is second only to Norfolk’s .733. Norfolk has won a North American professional hockey record 25 consecutive games.

DANIS THE TOP GOALIE: Yann Danis was named on Tuesday the winner of the Aldege “Baz” Bastien Memorial Award as the AHL’s outstanding goaltender for the 2011-12 season, as voted by AHL coaches, players and members of the media in each of the league’s 30 cities. Danis’ other accolades this season have included a scoreless period in the AHL All-Star Classic, the first by a goalie in 7 years, and his being named a first-team AHL All-Star. Danis is third in the AHL in goals-against average at 2.13, trailing only Toronto’s Ben Scrivens (2.04) and Lake Erie’s Cedrick Desjardins (2.08). Danis is sixth in wins (25), tied for second in shutouts (5) and tied for seventh in save percentage (.923).

WILD ABOUT HOUSTON: Yann Danis has played all 7 games against the Aeros this season, going 6-0-1 with 2 shutouts, a 1.37 goals-against average and .944 save percentage. In his career against the Aeros, counting games played for Hamilton in 2005 and 2006, Danis is 7-0-2 with a 1.38 GAA and .941 save percentage against the Aeros.

EDMONTON SENDS REINFORCEMENTS: With the parent Edmonton Oilers’ season over, the Barons received defenseman Colten Teubert, center Chris VandeVelde and winger Teemu Hartikainen on Sunday. Each is on the Barons’ Clear Day list and therefore eligible for all remaining games, regular season and playoff.

RED HOT ROOKIES: Rookies have scored 8 of OKC’s 10 goals over the last 6 games: Antti Tyrvainen (3), Hunter Tremblay (2), Tanner House (2) and Tyler Pitlick (1). The only non-rookie goal scorer in the past 6 games has been Ryan Keller, who has tallied twice. Tyrvainen had a career-best 5-game point streak snapped on Saturday.

POWER TRIPS: The Barons are 27-1-2-4 when scoring at least 1 power play goal. When they tally 2 or more in a game, they are 7-0-0-1. When held without a power play goal, the Barons are 16-20-2-1. The Barons are 0-for-17 on the man advantage in their past 6 games and 1-for-24 in the last 8.

IN THREES: Tonight begins OKC’s 12th and final set of 3 games in 3 days. The Barons are 7-3-1-0 in the first of 3 games in 3 nights.

PRODUCTIVE FARMING: The past 2 years mark the first time in the Edmonton’s NHL tenure that its top affiliate, shared or exclusive, has had back-to-back 40-win seasons. Last season’s inaugural edition of the Barons also qualified for the Calder Cup playoffs, going 40-29-2-9, good for 91 points.

April 6: Ryan Lowery loaned to Stockton.
April 8: Teemu Hartikainen, Chris VandeVelde and Colten Teubert returned on loan from Edmonton.
April 10: Cameron Abney reassigned to Stockton.
April 12: Mike Marcou released from ATO

Player                     Issue              Out                 
Curtis Hamilton    knee               day-to-day
Andrew Lord         concussion   indefinitely
Taylor Chorney     upper body    day-to-day
K. Montgomery     lower body     indefinitely

Last 5 games:
Date        Opp.     Result     OKC Goalie (GA,SV)   Opp. Goalie            Attn.
March 30 @ Mil     W, 3-2      Danis (2, 36)                   Smith (3, 24)              9,344
March 31 @ GR    L, 2-6       Danis (6, 25)                   McCollum (2, 38)        7,884
April 3      Ham       W, 3-0      LeNeveu (0, 30)             Delmas (2, EN, 32)    2,652
April 6      Peo       L, 1-3       LeNeveu (2, EN, 24)       Allen (1, 31)               3,105
April 7      Chi         L, 0-3       Danis (3, 27)                   Lack (0, 29)               3,490

Next 5 games (all times Central):
Date        Opp.          Site                                Time   Broadcast
April 14    @ Texas     Cedar Park Center          7:00     KXY 96.1 FM
April 15    @ SA          AT&T Center                   3:30     KXY 96.1 FM
End of regular season

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