Saturday, Feb. 18 | 7:00 p.m. | Allstate Arena | The U Too | Facebook
IT’S BEEN A WHILE
The San Antonio Rampage made their first visit of the season to Allstate Arena just six weeks into the 2017-18 campaign and managed to get out of Rosemont with a 2-1 victory. That was Chicago’s second setback in a string of eight consecutive that would stand as the league’s season-high until the Hershey Bears went winless for nine straight contests from Jan. 10 to Feb. 2. Fourteen weeks later, getting the W at Allstate will prove more of a task for the Rampage as the Wolves are riding a 13-game home winning streak. Prior to San Antonio’s first visit, the Wolves owned a 4-5-1-0 record with a .450 win percentage. Since Nov. 11, the Wolves have accrued a 21-11-5-2 record for a .628 win percentage.
On Thursday, forward Tomas Hyka skated in game action for the first time since Jan. 26. Prior to sustaining an injury, Hyka was the Chicago Wolves’ most productive player in the month of January with 13 points (3G, 10A) through 11 games. However, the 24-year-old made his presence known Thursday with a power-play goal at 9:27 of the second period to give the Wolves a 3-1 lead over the Cleveland Monsters. Before his injury, Hyka’s last goal came against Cleveland on Jan. 21 when he collected two points (G, A) to help the Wolves to a 3-1 victory.
Thursday marked 23-year-old Oscar Dansk’s first game with the Chicago Wolves since Oct. 7 and his first since sustaining an injury on Oct. 30. Against the Cleveland Monsters on Thursday, Dansk made 32 saves, including 13 in the second period, to help Chicago keep its franchise-record home win streak alive. Prior to Thursday, Dansk last was between the pipes for Chicago against the Texas Stars and made 30 saves but that was not enough as the Wolves fell 6-5 in overtime to the Stars. When Dansk was injured, he was backstopping the Vegas Golden Knights. He had been recalled on Oct. 19 because Marc-Andre Fluery was injured. Two days later, Malcolm Subban went down during a game and it became Dansk’s turn between in the crease for the Golden Knights.
BULLS ON PARADE
At any given time, the San Antonio Rampage roster includes up to eight former Chicago Wolves players. Goaltender Ville Husso, defensemen Chris Butler and Jordan Schmaltz, and forwards Andrew Agozzino, Samuel Blais, Adam Musil, Zach Sanford and Tage Thompson all skated for the Wolves during the 2016-17 season. Blais (11-16—27) and Agozzino (10-16—26) are 1-2, respectively, in Rampage team scoring and five of San Antonio’s top 10 scorers are former Wolves.
THE FIRST KNIGHT
On Thursday, center Reid Duke, the first Vegas Golden Knight in franchise history, was loaned to the Chicago Wolves. Duke was sidelined prior to the start of the season with an injury during rookie camp in September and has been on injured reserve since. After signing with the Golden Knights in March 2017, the 22-year-old spent the final six weeks of the 2016-17 campaign with the Wolves but did see any game action.
By the Numbers:
- 2: There are only two rookies among the American Hockey League’s top 20 goaltenders ranked by goals-against average: the Chicago Wolves’ Kasimir Kaskisuo and the San Antonio Rampage’s Ville Husso. Husso began his North American professional career last season as a member of the Wolves. With Chicago, Husso appeared in 22 games and compiled a 13-6-2 record. He also produced a 2.37 goals-against average and .920 save percentage. This season, Kaskisuo’s first with the Wolves, the 24-year-old has backstopped the team for 23 games and accrued an 11-10-2 record. Overall this season, which includes one game with the Toronto Marlies, Kaskisuo owns a 2.43 goals-against average and .911 save percentage.
- 3: The San Antonio Ramage roster features three former Chicago Wolves that made their National Hockey League debuts after skating for the Wolves. The first to make his NHL debut was defenseman Jordan Schmaltz during the 2016-17 campaign. The then 23-year-old played his first NHL game on March 5, 2017, against the Colorado Avalanche. This season, two former Wolves forwards have made their debuts: Samuel Blais and Tage Thompson. Blais made his NHL debut on Oct. 14, 2017, against the Tampa Bay Lightning and Thompson began his NHL career on Opening Night, Oct. 4, against the Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins.
- 8: With their 3-for-5 performance on the power play Thursday night against the Cleveland Monsters, the Chicago Wolves jumped eight spots in the American Hockey League’s powerplay rankings. They started the night in 24th place with a 15.2 percent conversion rate, but finished the night tied for 16th with a 16.2 percent conversion rate.
- 22.4: Last season, five of the eight Wolves-turned-Rampage players accounted for 22.4 percent of the Chicago Wolves team scoring. Andrew Agozzino (18- 36—54), Samuel Blais (26-17—43), Chris Butler (5-21—26), Jordan Schmaltz (3- 22—25) and Tage Thompson (1-1—2) accrued 150 (53G, 97A) of the Wolves’ 669 (251G, 420A) points. Blais was the Wolves’ top goal-scoring rookie with 26 tallies. The veteran Agozzino and Blais were third and fifth, respectively, in C
- Chicago stretched its franchise-record home win streak to 13 games.
- Forwards Tomas Hyka, Mackenzie MacEachern, Teemu Pulkkinen and T.J. Tynan each scored.
- Goaltender Oscar Dansk made 32 saves in his first game with the Wolves since Oct. 7.
- 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.
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Nov. 11, 2017
|11/11/2017||Allstate Arena||L, 1-2|