Wednesday, Dec. 27 | 7:00 p.m. | UMW Panther Arena | Facebook
ON TO THE NEXT ONE
The Chicago Wolves’ longest win streak of the year ended at six games with the overtime loss to the Rockford IceHogs on Dec. 22. During that span, Chicago outscored opponents 26-13 and put nearly 200 shots on net to outshoot opponents 197-178. The Wolves owned a 12.1 percent power play with four goals in 33 opportunities. Their win-streak power play was just 1.6 percentage points behind their overall power play at 13.7 percent. The team’s penalty kill clicked along at a 76 percent success rate with 19 kills in 25 opponent power-play opportunities. That number was not quite as good as the overall penalty kill at 82.4 percent.
On Dec. 22, the Chicago Wolves suffered their first loss when forward Tobias Lindberg gets on the scoresheet. However, the team is still unbeaten (6-0-1-0) in regulation as the Rockford IceHogs needed 4:35 of the 3-on-3 overtime frame to end the Wolves’ win streak. In the seven games that the 22-year- old Lindberg has scored, he has earned eight points (4G, 4A) with a two-point (G, A) performance in the 4-2 victory over the Admirals on Dec. 17. Lindberg’s track record also includes two shutouts — 2-0 over Grand Rapids (Nov. 3) and 3-0 against Cleveland (Dec. 9).
MINIMAL BOX TIME
Through their first 30 games, the Chicago Wolves are the fourth-least penalized team in the American Hockey League. Averaging just 11.47 minutes per game, the Wolves are on pace to rack up only 871 minutes. That would be 76 minutes fewer than last season, when the Wolves set a franchise record (947) and finished with less than 1,000 penalty minutes on the season. Right now, the Wolves penalty- minute leader is captain Paul Thompson with 33 minutes. In the 2016-17 campaign, rookie defenseman Vince Dunn led the team with 71 penalty minutes through 72 games.
OUTSHOOT BUT DON’T SCORE
The Chicago Wolves have been in a weird conundrum this season: In the first period, the Wolves have been outscored 33-20 by opponents despite outshooting them 330-278. That 52-shot differential is the second-largest for the Wolves as they outshoot opponents 363-302 in the middle frame. In the third stanza, they own a 20-shot advantage, 297-277. Overall, the Wolves are still being outscored 92-89, but outscore their opponents 34-23 and 34-30 in the second and third session, respectively. In overtime, the Wolves have been outscored 5-1 in seven games as one contest (Nov. 19 at Rockford) required a shootout.
By the Numbers:
- 0: The Milwaukee Admirals handed the Chicago Wolves their only shutout loss of the season on Nov. 8 at UWM Panther Arena. Admirals goaltender Anders Lindback made 29 saves while Wolves netminder Kasimir Kaskisuo procured his second-highest save total of the season with 34. The 3-0 shutout was the most decisive game of the season series thus far. Three of the other four contests have been decided by one goal and one contest even needed overtime.
- .727: Through their first 11 games in the month of December, the Chicago Wolves have posted a 7-2-2-0 record for a .727 win percentage. Those stats are the team’s best showing since the season began in October. In Chicago’s previous two months of competition, it had a combined 5-10-3-1 record for a .368 win percentage.
- 3: Of the 12 game-winning goals scored by Chicago Wolves players, veteran Brett Sterling owns three of them (Nov. 25, Dec. 15, Dec. 17). Those have helped bring his career game- winner total to 45 tallies through 517 career American Hockey League contests. In other words, 18.5 percent of Sterling’s career AHL goals are game-winners — impressive for the league’s all-time leading active goal-scorer. In Wolves franchise history, Sterling ranks No. 2 all-time with 186 goals, including eight this year. The team’s only other multi-GWG scorer this year is Tomas Hyka, who owns two (Oct. 14, Dec. 16).
4: The Milwaukee Admirals have faced four of the five goaltenders on the Chicago Wolves this season. They’ve twice faced C.J. Motte, who earned his first American Hockey League win against Milwaukee on Oct. 28. Motte again faced the Admirals on Nov. 12 in a 3-2 loss. Kasimir Kaskisuo’s fourth game in a Wolves jersey came against Milwaukee, a 3-0 shutout loss in which he made 34 saves; his second highest save total of the season. Veteran Michael Leighton made his Chicago debut on Nov. 24 and backstopped the Wolves to a 3-2 overtime loss. While he began the season with the Wolves, current starter Max Lagace did not face the Admirals until Dec. 17 when he made 33 saves en route to a 4-2 victory for Chicago.
13: Though the Chicago Wolves win streak came to an end at six games on Friday with a 3-2 overtime loss to the Rockford IceHogs, the Wolves’ point streak is alive and well. Boasting a 6-0-1-0 record in their last seven games, they have also earned 13 points in that span to move into the No. 5 spot among Central Division teams and back into the discussion for playoffs. Chicago has gone to extra time seven times this season and posted a 1-0-5-1 record.
- 1,000 The Chicago Wolves are still on the hunt for regular-season franchise win No. 1,000. Chicago’s Illinois Lottery Cup rival, the Rockford IceHogs, were able to stave off the Wolves with just 25 seconds left in the 3-on- 3 overtime to halt the club’s six-game winning streak and make it wait another game for another shot at its 1,000th victory. Over the course of 23-plus seasons and the first 999 wins, the Wolves have achieved some major accomplishments: a single-season high of 55 wins (1997-98), 16 40-plus win seasons, nine 100-plus point seasons and 18 playoff berths which has resulted in four league championships.
- Chicago fell to Rockford to end its winning streak, but earned its 13th point in seven games.
- Centers Tobias Lindberg and Brandon Pirri both tallied for the Wolves.
- Rockford’s Darren Raddysh scored with 25 seconds left in overtime for the victory.
- Goaltender Max Lagace stopped 28 of 31 shots in his first loss in six starts.
- The Wolves reeled off five consecutive goals to rally from a 3-0 deficit and extend the club’s winning streak to six games.
- Forwards Brett Sterling, Paul Thompson, T.J. Tynan and Scooter Vaughan as well as defenseman Jason Garrison all tallied.
- Goaltender Max Lagace made 30 saves for his fifth straight victory in a Wolves sweater.
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Dec. 17, 2017
5-6-0-1 Milwaukee | 7-3-1-1 Chicago
|10/28/2017||Allstate Arena||W, 2-1|
|11/08/2017||UMW Panther Arena||L, 0-3|
|11/12/2017||Allstate Arena||L, 2-3|
|11/24/2017||UMW Panther Arena||OTL, 2-3|
|12/17/2017||Allstate Arena||W, 4-2|
|12/27/2017||UMW Panther Arena|
|12/29/2017||UMW Panther Arena|
|03/09/2018||UMW Panther Arena|
|04/10/2018||UMW Panther Arena|