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Phantoms Weekly - Return from Holiday Break

December 25, 2013 - American Hockey League (AHL) - Adirondack Phantoms News Release

Last Week's Results

Friday, December 20 - Adirondack Phantoms 5 - Norfolk Admirals 4

Saturday, December 21 - Norfolk Admirals 3 - Adirondack Phantoms 1

This Week's Games

Thursday, December 26 (7:00) - Adirondack Phantoms (13-12-2) at Springfield Falcons (20-4-3)

Friday, December 27 (7:00) - Adirondack Phantoms (13-12-2) at Albany Devils (17-8-3)

Saturday, December 28 (7:00) - Providence Bruins (14-9-6) at Adirondack Phantoms (13-12-2)

Tuesday, December 31 (5:00) - Worcester Sharks (12-11-2) at Adirondack Phantoms (13-12-2)


Hello again, Phantoms fans! We hope you had a very Merry Christmas and are enjoying this holiday season. The Adirondack Phantoms are returning for their quick Holiday Break and will barely have time to catch their breath as they get right back at it with three games in three days. No practices are allowed for any teams during the holiday break and most of the players made their way home for the past few days to spend their holidays with family and friends.

The Phantoms have won four of their last six and are also 12-8-0 in their last 20 games since October 26 as they resume play following their break. The team holds practice on Thursday morning at the Glens Falls Civic Center and then it's off to Springfield to take on the top team in the American Hockey League that night. The Falcons are 20-4-3 this season for the top win percentage (.796) and fewest regulation losses of any team. Of Springfield's four regulation losses, half of them have come against the Phantoms.

The Phantoms play rival Albany on Friday night down at Times Union Center where Adirondack has won their last two visits. Adirondack leads the Northway Rivalry series 3-2 entering Game 6 out of 12.

Saturday and Tuesday the Phantoms are back at the Glens Falls Civic Center facing a couple opponents for the first time this year. The Providence Bruins roll into town on Saturday night on Phantoms Youth T-Shirt Night presented by UniFirst for the first 1,000 kids age 14 and younger. It is the only visit to Glens Falls this season for the Baby Bruins.

Tuesday against the Worcester Sharks is a special 5:00 PM start-time for the big New Year's Eve game which is a Glens Falls hockey tradition dating back to the beginning of the Adirondack Red Wings in 1979.

Fans can save when they purchase their tickets in advance. Call the Phantoms at 518-480-3355.

Adirondack Phantoms (13-12-2, 28 points)

Phantoms Leaders

Goals: Rob Bordson (7), Chris VandeVelde (7) Kris Newbury (6)

Assists: Jason Akeson (16), Petr Straka (8), Bruno Gervais (8), Ben Holmstrom (8), Brandon Manning (8)

Points: Jason Akeson (22), Bordson (14), Five with (13) VandeVelde, Holmstrom, Newbury, Straka, Gervais

Games: Six players with (27) - Akeson, Bordson, Gervais, Holmstrom, Manning, Lauridsen

PIM: Brandon Manning (91), Kris Newbury (80), Oliver Lauridsen (76)

GAA: Cal Heeter (2.41)

Sv Pct: Cal Heeter (.919)

Wins: Cal Heeter (9)


Kris Newbury - Played 700th career professional game last Saturday, December 21 at Norfolk

Rob Bordson - Has played in 127 consecutive ADK Phantoms games dating back to 2/24/12

Cal Heeter - 50th game last Saturday, December 21. Third goalie for ADK Phantoms to reach 50 games joining Michael Leighton (88) and Johan Backlund (75).

Jason Akeson - 130 career points, most all-time for ADK Phantoms. 14th for Phantoms franchise. 13th is Paul Healey (138 from 1996-98) and then 11th/12th are Danny Syvret and Colonie native Craig Darby at 146.

Ben Holmstrom - 41 career goals with ADK Phantoms is seven away from equaling Denis Hamel record (48).

Saratoga Spine Player of the Week - Kris Newbury

Last Saturday night, Kris Newbury played in his 700th career professional game.

Congratulations, Kris!

Before achieving the milestone, he scored a goal and an assist last Friday night in Adirondack's 5-4 win at the Norfolk Admirals. This season, Newbury is third on the Phantoms in points with 13 on six goals and seven assists.

The 31-year-old veteran center from Brampton, Ontario began his professional career in 2003 with the St. John's Maple Leafs and has also played in the AHL with the Toronto Marlies, Grand Rapids Griffins and Hartford Wolf Pack. In the NHL, Newbury has played in 76 games with the Philadelphia Flyers, New York Rangers, Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs.

Adirondack Phantoms Record Book Snapshot

Career Goals

1. Denis Hamel 48

2. Ben Holmstrom 41

3. Jason Akeson 39

4. Eric Wellwood 34

5. Mike Testwuide 32

6. Tye McGinn 31

7. Jon Matsumoto 30

8. Stefan Legein 29

9. Rob Bordson 27

10. Michael Ryan 25

10. Jon Kalinski 25

Penalty Kill Dominance

Adirondack's penalty kill rates third in the AHL at 87.2% trailing only Springfield (90.2) and Norfolk (88.0). On home ice, the Phantoms are tops in the league at 90.8% allowing just 6 out of 65 opportunities total. The Phantoms began the year turning aside 31 straight home power plays they faced before the Albany Devils finally tallied on the man-advantage in Glens Falls on November 23.

Power Play Turnaround

After a sluggish start to the season, the power play for the Phantoms has really started to click. In its last six games, Adirondack is converting at 22.7% (5-for-22). The Phantoms have scored a power-play goal in seven of their last 11 games. On the season, the Phantoms have a record of 7-3-1 when they score at least one power-play goal.

First to Three

The Phantoms are 11-3-1 when they score three or more goals in a game. That includes a record of 3-0-1 in games when scoring four or more goals. Adirondack is just 3-10-2 when allowing three or more goals. In games in which the Phantoms allow two goals or fewer their record is 10-2-0.

Strike Early

The Adirondack Phantoms are 10-1-1 when scoring the first goal of the game and are 8-2-2 when they have the lead at the first intermission.

Last Week

Friday, December 20:

Adirondack Phantoms 5 - Norfolk Admirals 4

The Phantoms took the opener of their weekend series in southeast Virginia in a wild and back-and-forth affair. Bruno Gervais blasted a power-play slapper with 10 minutes left to break a 4-4 tie and then Cal Heeter made several spectacular stops in the closing minutes to secure the win.

Brandon Manning had a memorable performance with his first career two-goal game that was part of a big "Gordie Howe Hat Trick" (goal, assist and fight in the same game). Jason Akeson notched three assists while Kris Newbury and Rob Bordson also scored goals against Norfolk's John Gibson.

The two teams combined for six goals in just the second period with each side scoring three times in the frame. Two different occasions saw Adirondack and Norfolk trade rapid-fire goals in quick succession just nine seconds apart and then 10 seconds apart. It was a season-high for goals in a game for the Phantoms as well as goals in a period.

The game saw a pair of fights including the first bout for Zack FitzGerald since his injury on October 25.

Saturday, December 21: Norfolk Admirals 3 - Adirondack Phantoms 1

6'6" tall Russian goalie Igor Bobkov prevented the Phantoms from sweeping the series on the road with 28 saves on 29 shots. Jason Akeson put the Phantoms on the board about six minutes into the third period to cut a 2-0 deficit down to 2-1. And Adirondack had a golden opportunity late via a power play with 2:12 remaining and then a pulled goalie a few seconds later to set up a 6-on-4 attack but they were unable to score the equalizer. Norfolk would finish matters with 13 seconds remaining with a long empty-netter.

Steven Delisle entered the lineup for the first time since October and had an impressive performance including a big slapshot off the pipe in the first couple minutes of the game just missing his first career AHL goal and then a dominating fight with John Kurtz landing several punishing blows. Also dropping the gloves in the game were Derek Mathers with tough-guy Zack Stortini and Nick Cousins in his first career professional fight going up against fellow under-size rookie Charlie Sarrault.

Upcoming Opponents

Springfield Falcons (20-4-3, 43 points) - Affiliation, Columbus Blue Jackets

Thursday, December 26 (7:00) - Mass Mutual Center, Springfield, MA

Springfield has dominated almost all of their opponents this season, except for the Adirondack Phantoms who have gone 2-0-1 thus far against the league's top team. Against all opponents NOT Adirondack, Springfield's record is an astounding 19-2-3.

The defending Northeast Division champs are on a seven-game point streak (6-0-1) and have a .796 win percentage that leads the AHL and only four regulation losses which is fewest. Adirondack's previous visit to Western Mass on November 8 was a 3-0 win in Cal Heeter's first career shutout.

Springfield's penalty kill is tops in the AHL at 90.2% and their defense allows just 2.33 per game to rate second.

Following the call-up of Mike McKenna to Columbus, former Predators prospect Mike Smith (13-3-3, 2.43, .911) has been their regular in goal.

Jonathan Marchessault leads the Falcons with 8-12-20 after scoring 21-46-67 last year. Frederic St. Denis is next at 6-11-17. Jake Hansen was teammates with Mark Alt at the University of Minnesota. Alex Aleardi played with Jason Akeson on the Kitchener Rangers (OHL).

Albany Devils (17-8-3, 37 points) - Affiliation, New Jersey Devils

Friday, December 27 (7:00) - Times Union Center, Albany, NY

Adirondack leads the season series 3-2 entering Game 6 of the 12-Game Northway Rivalry. The Phantoms have emerged victorious in each of their previous two visits to the Capital District including an overtime win on November 29 when Bruno Gervais sniped home the winning blast.

Albany recently strung together a franchise-record six-game win streak before dropping back-to-back games last weekend 3-2 at Binghamton in overtime and then 4-3 at Bridgeport in regulation.

Third-year pro Joe Whitney from Boston College is their leading scorer again at 10-19-29. The 5'6" tall speedster scored 6-6-12 in 11 games last year against Adirondack and is 2-2-4 in five games of the season series so far this year.

Union College product Keith Kinkaid has been tremendous in net at 11-4-1, 2.09, .919 rating second in goals-against and leadong in shutouts with three. Stefan Matteau was a Round 1 selection (#29 overall) of the Devils in 2012 and is the son of NHL veteran Stephane Matteau who scored a famous goal for the New York Rangers in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals in double overtime against New Jersey.

The Phantoms barely have the edge in the all-time Northway Rivalry series against the Albany Devils by a 20-19 margin.

Northway Rivalry Series History: Adirondack Phantoms 20 - Albany Devils 19

2013-14 - Adirondack Phantoms lead 3-2

2012-13 - Albany Devils win series 8-4

2011-12 - Adirondack Phantoms win series 7-3

2010-11 - Series tied 6-6 (Phantoms win season series based on total points)

Providence Bruins (14-9-6, 34 points) - Affiliation, Boston Bruins

Saturday, December 28 (7:00) - Glens Falls Civic Center, Glens Falls, NY

The Baby Bruins make their only visit to Glens Falls this year and enter the week lacking some of their scoring punch. Their top two scorers, Ryan Spooner (5-18-23) and Matt Fraser (16-5-21) have both been up with Boston for a couple of weeks.

But AHL Goalie of the Year (Baz Bastien Memorial Award) Nick Svedberg is back for the defending Eastern Conference Champions. After putting up some incredible numbers as a rookie at 37-8-2, 2.17, .925 the 24-year-old from Sweden has had a slight sophomore slump at the professional ranks going 10-5-3, 3.08, .901.

Former Dartmouth College star Nick Johnson, previously in the Penguins and Wild organizations, is their top active scorer at 11-9-20 having recently returned from Boston. Carter Camper was one of the top collegiate scorers at Miami (Ohio) University and has scored 4-15-19 in his third season with Providence. Joe Morrow was a first-round selection (#23 overall) of the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2011.

The Bruins are sixth in the East with 34 points. Their power play clicks at 23.3% which is best in the conference and fourth out of 30 in the AHL and their offense scores 3.4 goals per game which is also fourth in the league. Their penalty kill is vulnerable at 75.7% for 28th in the circuit and their overall defense is also 28th allowing 3.28 goals per game.

Worcester Sharks (12-11-2, 26 points) - Affiliation, San Jose Sharks

Tuesday, December 31 (5:00) - Glens Falls Civic Center, Glens Falls, NY

Another new opponent makes their lone visit to the North Country for the traditional New Year's Eve game when the Sharks pay a visit. Closing out the last day of the year with a game at the Civic Center is a tradition which dates back to the start of the Adirondack Red Wings in 1979. The Adirondack Phantoms are 2-1-1 all-time in their New Year's Eve contests.

The Sharks won two out of three away games last weekend including a 4-1 win at Wilkes-Barre followed by a Saturday/Sunday split of their two-game set at Hershey. Veteran journeyman Bracken Kearns leads the scoring at 5-13-18 followed by Moscow, Russia product Danil Tarasov with 9-8-17 and Freddie Hamilton with 9-6-15. Finland native Harri Sateri (6-9-1, 3.01, .884) has struggled in his third season patrolling the crease but rookie Troy Grosenick (6-3-0, 2.01, .924) of Union College has stepped up to the challenge when called upon. Grosenick last year with the Dutchmen was 17-10-5, 2.12, .926. He led Union to their first ever Frozen Four appearance in 2012 and then helped them to the Regional Finals in 2013. Clifton Park native Nick Petrecki is one of the team's tougher players with 100+ PIM in each of his last four seasons but has been limited to only 12 games this season.

Travis Oleksuk was previously teammates with Rob Bordson at University of Minnesota-Duluth. Curt Gogol had played on the same blue-line as captain Brandon Manning for the Chilliwack Bruins (WHL) in 2010-11.


Thursday, December 26 (7:00) - Adirondack Phantoms at Springfield Falcons

Friday, December 27 (7:00) - Adirondack Phantoms at Albany Devils

Saturday, December 28 (7:00) - Providence Bruins at Adirondack Phantoms

Youth T-Shirt Night for the first 1,000 kids in attendance age 14 and younger courtesy of UniFirst

Tuesday, December 31 (5:00) - Worcester Sharks at Adirondack Phantoms

Traditional New Year's Eve Game in Glens Falls!

Friday, January 3 (7:00) - Hershey Bears at Adirondack Phantoms

First game of 2014!! Pregame Happy Hour - $2 Beer Specials 6:00 - 7:00 PM

Saturday, January 4 (7:00) - Albany Devils at Adirondack Phantoms

Zack FitzGerald Tribute Night! Big Face Fitzy on a Stick for first 2,500 fans courtesy of Liberty Graphics

When you order your tickets in advance, you save! Call the Phantoms at 518-480-3355

25 Terrific Seasons

Glens Falls is celebrating its 25th season hosting an AHL team and in so doing now joins an elite group of just 9 other active markets who can make such a claim. It's a great hockey tradition with an old-school feel that began with the Adirondack Red Wings in 1979. In their 20-year tenure at the Glens Falls Civic Center through 1999, the Red Wings won four Calder Cups. The Adirondack Phantoms began play in Glens Falls in 2009-10 and are in their fifth season bringing exciting AHL action to the North Country.

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