Welcome to Wolves Roundup, a weekly report of highlights, notes and transactions from the Chicago Wolves’ previous week of competition during the 2017-18 season.
Home Sweet Home
After a one-and-done road trip, the Chicago Wolves return home to the comfortable confines of Allstate Arena for three games this week. The Wolves look to extend their franchise-record home winning streak that stands as 12 games.
The Wolves already own the longest home winning streak in the American Hockey League over the last two seasons. They are just two games shy of entering the league’s top five longest home winning streaks. Next on the list are the 2015-16 Grand Rapids Griffins and the 2006-07 Norfolk Admirals, who both posted 14-game streaks. The Hershey Bears set the benchmark for the league’s longest home winning streak with 24 consecutive home victories during the 2009-10 campaign. They went on to win that season’s Calder Cup.
Chicago continues its quest toward history on Thursday, Feb. 15, when the Cleveland Monsters visit Allstate Arena for the first of two games this weekend — they return on Sunday, Feb. 18.
The Monsters are last in the Central Division and 29th in the league in winning percentage. However, in their most recent game on Feb. 11, they eeked out a 3-2 overtime victory against the Central Division-leading Manitoba Moose. The Monsters have accrued a 3-6-1-0 record in their last 10 games.
After dropping the opening game of the season series on Dec. 8 in Cleveland, the Wolves have rattled off three straight wins over the Monsters — including a shutout on Dec. 9 by Michael Leighton.
On Saturday, Feb. 17, some familiar faces return to Rosemont as the San Antonio Rampage’s roster includes seven Wolves players from last season’s Central Division-winning squad: Andrew Agozzino, Samuel Blais, Chris Butler, Ville Husso, Adam Musil, Jordan Schmaltz and Tage Thompson. Former Wolves captain Butler was recalled from loan by the St. Louis Blues on Feb. 9 and has yet to return to the Rampage lineup. Rookie Thompson also is with the Blues as he was recalled on Jan. 15.
The Wolves and Rampage have faced each other just once this season, and the Rampage stampeded out of Allstate Arena on Nov. 11 with a 2-1 victory. Saturday will be San Antonio’s final visit to Allstate this season. The Wolves will make their voyage to AT&T Center at the beginning of March as part of a three-game road trip to the state of Texas.
Ice, Sun and Fun
The first outdoor practice in Chicago Wolves history was a complete success Sunday at the Chicago Wolves Ice Rink in Rosemont’s Parkway Bank Park. On a beautiful afternoon, the Wolves showed off some drills and played some mini-games for the crowd before welcoming everybody — young and old — on the ice for some hockey, free skating, picture-taking and camaraderie.
— Chicago Wolves (@Chicago_Wolves) February 12, 2018
The 25-year-old was the Chicago Wolves’ lone goal scorer this weekend. His goal just 37 seconds into the second period of Friday’s game against the Iowa Wild was the first goal of the contest and the Wolves’ only goal of the game as they suffered a 4-1 setback in Des Moines. It was just the third time the Wolves have lost to the Wild in regulation at Wells Fargo Arena since the teams began competing in 2013.
On Friday night, the Quebec native made his first start in nearly a month. Lagace’s previous start came against the Iowa Wild on Jan. 17. However, he suffered a mid-game injury and was replaced by Kasimir Kaskisuo to begin the third period. Unfortunately, Lagace’s return to the crease did not end in his favor. Although he made 22 saves, the Wolves fell 4-1 to the Wild. The next day, Lagace was recalled from loan by the Vegas Golden Knights.
On Sunday, the team captain was recalled from loan by the Vegas Golden Knights for the first time this season. The recall was on an emergency basis as Vegas continues to battle the injury bug. The 29-year-old did not see NHL game action when the Golden Knights battled the Philadelphia Flyers Sunday night.
The Wolves media darling had a sparkling week that began with the unveiling of his bobblehead and an appearance on CLTV’s SportsFeed. In true Vaughan form, the California native arrived to the Chicago Wolves’ first outdoor practice on Sunday wearing a Batman pajama onesie. To view Scooter’s bobblehead, visit any of the Wolves’ social media channels. The first 2,500 fans inside Allstate Arena on Feb. 17 will receive their very own mini-Scooter.
- The Wolves suffered just their fourth regulation loss in two months
- Forward Bryce Gervais scored Chicago’s lone goal, his fourth of the season, just 37 seconds into the second period to give the Wolves a 1-0 lead.
- Making his first start since Jan. 17, goaltender Max Lagace made 22 saves in the loss.
|Thursday, Feb. 15||vs. Cleveland Monsters||Allstate Arena||7 p.m.|
|Saturday, Feb. 17||vs. San Antonio Rampage||Allstate Arena||7 p.m.|
|Sunday, Feb. 18||vs. Cleveland Monsters||Allstate Arena||3 p.m.|
|Wednesday, Feb. 21||at Grand Rapids||Van Andel Arena||6 p.m.|
|Saturday, Feb. 24||at Manitoba||Bell MTS Place||2 p.m.|