By Jim Byers, on 01/20/2011

Oklahoma City Barons (22-16-2-4) at Milwaukee Admirals (24-12-2-4)

Game 45  |  Road Game 21  |  AHL Game 649

Jan. 20, 2011, 7 pm CST  | Bradley Center, Milwaukee, WI

Broadcast: KXY 96.1 FM


TONIGHT: A 7-game road trip continues with the Barons’ second visit of the season to the Bradley Center to face the Milwaukee Admirals (Nashville Predators). Tonight is the fifth game of the trip. The Barons dropped Tuesday’s contest 3-1 at Lake Erie to snap a 4-game winning streak that covered the first 3 games of the trip and the previous homestand finale. In the most recent meeting between these teams on Dec. 12, the Admirals beat the Barons 2-1 in Milwaukee. OKC won back-to-back games in November at the Cox Center 4-1 and 5-2.


HELMER NAMED PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Bryan Helmer was named on Monday the Reebok/AHL Player of the Week for the period ending Sunday. He’s the second Baron to be so honored, as Linus Omark received the award for Nov. 1-7, which included his 5-goal game against Toronto Nov. 7. Helmer had 3 goals, 3 assists and was a +5 in 3 games last week. On Jan. 13 he surpassed John Slaney as the AHL’s all-time leading point scorer among defenseman when he collected No. 520.


MORE HELMER: Signed to a PTO Jan. 7 after not playing professionally earlier this season, Helmer has 11 points in 7 games played with OKC. He has at least 1 point in 6 of the 7 games. His 4 goals are the second-most on the club behind current Edmonton Oiler Jeff Petry’s 7. Already the league’s all-time point and assist leader among defensemen and games-played leader (with 138) among players at any position in Calder Cup action, the next milestone in sight for Helmer is 1,000 games in the league. Tonight will be his 990th AHL game dating to 1993. If he plays each scheduled game, he will hit No. 1,000 on Feb. 18 against Abbotsford in a game played at Scotiabank Saddledome, home of the Calgary Flames. The first of OKC’s 2-game set with the Heat is in Calgary as part of the NHL Heritage Classic festivities. The Heritage Classic outdoor game is set for Feb. 20 at Calgary’s McMahon Stadium between the Flames and Montreal Canadiens. 


G-MAN: All-Star captain Alexandre Giroux enters tonight’s game with at least 1 point in 5 of the last 6 games, totaling 7 goals and 5 assists in that span. In January, Giroux leads the AHL in scoring with 13 points (7G, 6 A). For the season, Giroux’s 48 points are second-most in the league behind Binghamton’ Corey Locke (55). Giroux remains tied with OKC’s Colin McDonald for the second-most goals in the league with 20, trailing the 21 tallies by Chicago’s Nigel Dawes, Connecticut’s Jeremy Williams and Charlotte’s Jerome Samson.


TEEMU NEAR THE TOP: With points in 4 of the last 5 games (1G, 6A), Teemu Hartikainen has moved into a tie for fourth in the AHL in rookie scoring with 28 points. The leader is Rhett Rakhshani of Bridgeport with 32 AHL points. Rakhshani is currently with the New York Islanders.


SPECIAL TEAMS UPDATE:  The Barons lead the AHL in power play opportunities with 240, rank second power play goals scored (47) and tied for third in most times shorthanded (221). OKC’s 19.6% rate on the power play is 10th. Their penalty killing rate of 86.4% is third.


HAPPY NEW YEAR: With a January record of 5-3-1-0, the Barons have already surpassed their December win total, when they went 4-5-0-3 for the month.


ODDS AND ENDS: Brad Moran is tied for 10th in the AHL in scoring with 37 points...the Barons have had 5-game and 4-game road winning streaks this season, but their longest home winning streak is 2 games, accomplished twice.


Last 5 games:

Date      Opp.      Result        OKC Goalie (GA,SV)   Opp. Goalie          Attn.

Jan. 9     LE           W, 5-1          Deslauriers (1, 20)           Grahame (4, 19)      3,171

Jan. 13   @ Peoria W, 7-2          Gerber (2, 25)                 Allen (7, 26)            4,146

Jan. 14   @ Peoria W, 4-1          Deslauriers (1, 33)           Bishop (4, 22)         4,947

Jan. 15   @ SA      W, 2-0          Gerber (0, 18)                 Climie (1, EN, 24)    9,920

Jan. 18   @ LE      L, 1-3           Deslauriers (3, 24)           Grahame (1, 24)      3,087


Next 5 games (all times Central):

Date      Opp.                  Site                                      Time  Broadcast

Jan. 21   @ Rockford         Rockford MetroCentre          7:05    KXY 96.1 FM

Jan. 23   @ Chicago          Allstate Arena                       3:00    KXY 96.1 FM

Jan. 26   Chicago              Cox Center                           7:05    KTOK AM 1000

Jan. 28   Texas                  Cox Center                           6:05    KXY 96.1 FM

Jan. 29   Chicago              Cox Center                           7:05    KXY 96.1 FM

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