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Hogs Host Heat for First Meeting this Season

December 22, 2012 - American Hockey League (AHL) - Rockford IceHogs News Release

Rockford, Ill. - Clashing for the first time during the 2012-13 campaign, the Rockford IceHogs (14-13-1-1) and Abbotsford Heat (15-7-3-3) will meet at the BMO Harris Bank Center with a 7:05 p.m. puck drop. Tonight's contest is also Stan Mikita Night at the BMO.

Chicago Blackhawks Ambassador Stan Mikita will be honored before tonight's contest as the Hall of Famer will meet with fans and sign autographs in the main concourse. A select number of wristbands will be dispersed at each entrance to the arena signifying which fans will receive an autograph. Only fans with a wristband will be allowed into the autograph line and the bands will be available on a first come, first serve basis. The doors to the arena will open at 6 p.m. To accommodate every fan with a wristband, each fan will be permitted one item to be autographed or a photo with the Hall of Famer.

The first 1,500 fans into tonight's contest will also receive a Stan Mikita mini hockey stick courtesy of U.S. Cellular.

For tickets to the game, call (815) 968-5222, go online through IceHogs.com or in person at the BMO Harris Bank Center Box Office or at any Ticketmaster outlet.

Tonight's contest can be viewed on 23.2 Antenna TV, Comcast Cable channel 436, Charter 970, Mediacom-101 or online through AHLlive.com.

Each team is coming off a loss last night, with Rockford dropping a 2-1 contest at Milwaukee as they slipped into second place in the Midwest division while Grand Rapids was able to snag the top spot in the Midwest with a 5-1 victory over Abbotsford. The Heat currently maintain first place in the Western Conference's North Division.

Last season, the Heat took the season series with Rockford, where the Hogs posted just a 1-2-0-1 record against the Calgary Flames' minor league affiliate.

Brandon Pirri led Rockford skaters in points against Abbotsford during the 2011-12 campaign, tallying two goals and an assist in the four game set. This year, Pirri ranks tied for third in IceHogs scoring with 21 points (9g-12a) including seven (3g-4a) coming during the month of December.

Next Home Game: Puck drops at 7:05 p.m. as the Hogs play host to the Chicago Wolves in an Illinois Lottery Cup matchup and for the sixth time on the campaign. Rockford holds a 1-3-0-1 record thus far against their divisional rival.

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