Post Season Preview Eastern Conference Finals: Gens vs. 67's
With a 4-2 series win over the Niagara IceDogs in Round Two of the playoffs, the Oshawa Generals have advanced to the Eastern Conference finals where they will face off against the Ottawa 67's. With a spot in the OHL Championship on the line, the Gens will aim to take down the league-leading 67's and move on to the finals.
Looking at the regular season series between the two clubs, the Generals had a 3-5-0-0 record against the 67's in their eight meetings. With Ottawa finishing first in the east division in the regular season and the Gens coming in second, Oshawa will look to get the better of the 67's on the playoff stage and come out on top of the Eastern Conference.
The Generals head into the third round after coming off a huge comeback series victory over the Niagara IceDogs in which they fell down 2-0 but went on to beat the IceDogs in four-straight contests to win the series 4-2. Meanwhile, the Ottawa 67's have yet to waver in the post-season, going 8-0 with a first round win over the Hamilton Bulldogs and a second round victory against the Sudbury Wolves. With the Gens heading into the series with momentum, the team will look to deliver the 67's their first loss and take the third round from the strong Ottawa club.
One of Oshawa's most valuable players so far in the post-season has been goaltender Kyle Keyser. Coming off an incredible regular season, Kyser has continued the trend into the playoffs. He holds the leading goals-against average of all goalies in the post-season at an incredible 2.09 as well as leads in save percentage at 0.943, which has been the foundation of Oshawa's solid defensive efforts.
This round's goalie battle will feature two former World Junior starters from this past tournament in Keyser and 67's goaltender Michael DiPietro at the other end of the ice. DiPietro's numbers so far in the playoffs have been solid, posting a 2.26 goals-against average and a 0.915 save percentage. With the two teams entering this series with strong goaltenders behind them, the goalie matchup will be an important aspect of the third round as each groups of offense look to break through the opposing net minder.
Some key players for the Gens as they head into Round Two include forwards Nando Eggenberger and captain Kyle MacLean. Eggenberger was a big factor in the second round after finishing off the series on fire with 4 goals in the final 3 games to help the Gens pull off the clutch series comeback against the IceDogs. Following along was Kyle MacLean who sits in second on the team in points after tallying an amazing 7 points in 6 games during the second round, all while playing an important role as a strong two-way player. With the two forwards heading into the third round on a tear, look for each to be important factors for the Gens as they aim to get their offense rolling against Ottawa.
On the 67's side, forwards Lucas Chiodo and Kyle Maksimovich have been dangerous forces up front. Chiodo has played at a 2-points per game pace, tallying 16 points over Ottawa's 8 games played. Not far behind is teammate Maksimovich who has only played 6 games so far in the playoffs but has recorded 5 goals and 14 points over that span. The solid Gens defense backstopped by goalie Kyle Keyser will aim to shut down these two players along with the rest of the 67's offensive core in this series.
With the Generals vs. 67's Eastern Conference Finals set to unfold in Ottawa for Games 1 and 2 on Thursday and Saturday, join us as the Tribute Communities Centre when the Generals return home on Sunday, April 21st for Game 3 and Wednesday, April 24th for Game 4!
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