CHICAGO WOLVES (33-17-5-1) AT TEXAS STARS (27-23-4-3)
just your everyday heroics
Left wing Daniel Carr started his Friday being anointed as the American Hockey League’s Player of the Month for February. He finished his Friday by firing home the game-winning goal 1:04 into overtime to give the Chicago Wolves a 2-1 victory over the Texas Stars. Among the things Carr accomplished with that tally:
- Pushed the Wolves’ winning streak to a season-high-tying six games, the AHL’s longest active streak in the wake of Iowa’s 1-0 defeat of Bakersfield on Friday night.
- Pushed his career-high point streak to 12 games — which tied Syracuse’s Alex Barre-Boulet and Cory Conacher and San Antonio’s Jordan Kyrou for the longest point streak in the AHL this season.
- Pushed Carr into rare air as the only AHL player to score 30 goals this season.
- Pushed the Wolves into first place in the Central Division all by themselves. Chicago started Friday tied with Grand Rapids at 70 points apiece, but the Wolves won their overtime game while the Griffins dropped their overtime game at Rockford.
- Pushed goaltender Max Lagace’s winning streak to a season-high five games — though he has a ways to go to equal his professional-best streak of 10 wins that he set Jan. 16 to Feb. 17, 2016, while playing for Texas. During his five-game run, which began Feb. 17 with another 2-1 overtime win, the Quebec native has fashioned an 0.99 goals-against average and a .966 save percentage.
LINDBERG’S SECOND WOLVES TOUR
Center Tobias Lindberg made his season debut with the Wolves on Friday night after being acquired in the NHL trade-deadline deal that sent rookie defenseman Erik Brännström to Ottawa and brought Mark Stone to the Vegas Golden Knights. Lindberg heard about the trade Monday afternoon not long after a car ride with some Belleville (AHL) Senators teammates.
“We were saying, ‘Oh, it’s funny no one got traded at the deadline here,’ ” Lindberg told Wolves broadcaster Jason Shaver on Friday. “I got a call about five minutes later. I was real excited it was by Vegas and I was coming back to Chicago.”
Lindberg spent all of last season with the Wolves and contributed 10 goals and 13 assists in 64 games as a two-way center alternating between the third and fourth lines. He was teammates with 14 of the other 23 players on the current Wolves roster.
“I’m really happy to be here,” he said. “Knowing about half the team and all of the coaching staff, there was a really good feeling around it. I’m really happy to be amongst friends and be more comfortable.”
BY THE NUMBERS
3: The Wolves’ prowess during even-strength play shows up in the league’s plus/minus ratings as Chicago owns the top three spots and four of the top five. Daniel Carr continues to lead the AHL with his +35 rating while linemate Gage Quinney is second at +34. Rookie defensemen Zach Whitecloud ranks third at +33 while Nic Hague stands fifth at +27.
7: With goaltenders Max Lagace and Oscar Dansk leading the way, the Wolves have allowed two goals or fewer in seven consecutive games. That hasn’t happened for Chicago since the 2008-09 season, when Ondrej Pavelec, Robert Gherson and Dan Turple teamed up to surrender nine goals during a 6-1-0-0 stretch from Oct. 29 to Nov. 14. Later that season, Pavelec went six straight games without allowing three goals in any game.
12: Daniel Carr’s career-high 12-game point streak stands as the longest active stretch in the AHL. The next-closest run is owned by former teammate Brandon Pirri, who holds a 10-game streak that he pieced together from Nov. 28 to Jan. 5 before leaving the Wolves for good to join the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights. Pirri has posted 10 goals and 5 assists in 24 games for Vegas.
30: The Wolves and their NHL partner, the Vegas Golden Knights, have been blessed with relatively good health this season, which is symbolized by the fact the Wolves have needed to use just 30 players to this point in the season. Center Tobias Lindberg became player No. 30 Friday night. If the Wolves don’t break in any more players this season, then they’ll tie the franchise record for fewest players set by the 1995-96 team.
36: The Wolves are outscoring their opponents by 36 goals this season (189-153), which trails only Syracuse and Bakersfield for the best goal differential in the AHL. Most of that advantage has been piled up during the first period, when Chicago has outscored its foes 65-40. Nobody in the AHL is close to that +25 margin. The Wolves also outscore opponents by 17 (60-43) in the third. Only Syracuse boasts a better differential.
99: AHL All-Star left wing Daniel Carr enters tonight’s action with 18 points (9G, 9A) in 12 games since the All-Star break. For the season, he’s averaging 1.42 points per game. If he maintains this pace over the team’s final 20 games, he’ll finish with 99 points this season. He would become the AHL’s most prolific points producer since 2009-10, when Hershey’s Keith Aucoin scored 106 points and teammate Alexandre Giroux added 103.
356: If you’ve suited up for the Wolves, chances are better than 50/50 that you’ve also played in the National Hockey League. When recent Wolves forward Mackenzie MacEachern made his NHL debut on Jan. 10 for the St. Louis Blues, he became the 356th player (out of 619 Wolves all-time) who have competed for the Wolves and in the NHL. That 57.5 percent overall success rate is even higher among goaltenders. Of the 55 players who’ve tended the net for the Wolves over the years — starting with original goaltenders Ray LeBlanc and Wendell Young and continuing through current Wolves Max Lagace and Oscar Dansk — 38 boast NHL experience (69.1 percent).
THE NEXT THREE GAMES
All games are streamed on AHLTV.