Welcome to Wolves Insider: the report presented by Power Crunch that gives you a taste of all Chicago Wolves developments as the organization enjoys its 27th season.
RACING TO A RECORD-SETTING START
The Chicago Wolves have put a lot of great teams on the ice over the years, but none of them have been so dominant right from the start as head coach Ryan Warsofsky’s 2021 squad.
Not only have the Wolves won all seven of their games in regulation — eclipsing the 6-0-0-0 start by the 2007-08 Calder Cup champions — they have not trailed since the 5:11 mark of the second period in their second game (Feb. 6 at Rockford). The only time they’ve been tied in the third period this season (Feb. 11 vs. Grand Rapids), they regained the lead for good on a David Cotton goal just 86 seconds later.
The Wolves have outscored their opponents 34-14 — a +20 goal margin that doubles the next-closest AHL team — as goaltenders Jeremy Helvig and Beck Warm have teamed with a veteran defensive unit to allow two goals or fewer in each of the last five games. But the AHL’s top offense (4.86 goals per game) draws even more kudos.
“I think our team speed has been most impressive,” Warsofsky said. “When we get going, when we’re playing fast, we’re tough to play against. We’ve got some young kids with a lot of skill who can drive offense. That has been surprising.”
The Wolves still have a ways to go to break the AHL record for fastest start. The 1984-85 Rochester Americans, who briefly featured a 19-year-old Tom Barrasso in net, won their first 11 games on their way to a 40-27-13 record.
GEEKIE WINS CCM/AHL PLAYER OF THE WEEK HONORS
Center Morgan Geekie maximized his brief stay with the Chicago Wolves. Loaned to the team Thursday by the NHL’s Carolina Hurrricanes, Geekie scored just 19 seconds into his Wolves debut Saturday night. He added another goal and an assist to buttress that 10-2 win over Iowa Wild, then added two goals in the first period to trigger Sunday afternoon’s 4-1 win over Iowa.
For producing four goals (on four shots) and one assist in his first 22 hours in a Wolves uniform, Geekie was named as the CCM/AHL Player of the Week at noon Chicago time. However, at 4:45 p.m. Monday, Geekie was recalled from loan by Carolina.
FACEBOOK WATCH ON FRIDAY
The Wolves have amassed a big following on AHLTV this season thanks to the affordable subscription packages at AHLTV.com. But for those who have yet to watch this team, Friday is for you. The Wolves’ 6 p.m. game at Grand Rapids is the AHL’s Facebook Watch Game of the Week, so go to the AHL’s page (facebook.com/theahl) at that time to watch our game live!
STILL ROOM IN THE WOLVES FAN GALLERY!
Fans can’t attend Wolves home games this season, but that doesn’t mean their smiling faces can’t be inside the Wolves Training Facility for every game! How do fans get inside the building? By joining the Chicago Wolves Fan Gallery, presented by Hefty, with a purchase of their own personalized cutout for just $50.
Each cutout will “attend” every home game. Then, at the end of the season, each cutout will be autographed and sent to you as a permanent souvenir of the 2020-21 season. To learn how to purchase a cutout and submit your picture, click here.
The Carolina Hurricanes’ first-round pick in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft scored two goals in Saturday’s 10-2 victory over Iowa to take over the AHL lead in goals (6) and to pull into a tie for the league lead in points (9). The 19-year-old from Winnipeg, Manitoba, scored at least one point in each of his first six pro games.
One day after Jarvis took over the AHL goal-scoring lead, this 23-year-old center joined him at the top as Pitlick scored his sixth goal of the season during Sunday’s 4-1 win over Iowa. The Plymouth, Minnesota, native owns six goals in six games and also boasts a +6 plus/minus rating during his second year as a pro.
This center from River Falls, Wisconsin, racked up one goal and five assists in three games last week to join Jarvis at the top of the AHL scoring list with 9 points. The 23-year-old tied a career-high with four pinots (G, 3A) in Saturday’s 10-2 win over Iowa and has produced at least one point in five of the Wolves’ six games.
SUNDAY, FEB. 21: (at) CHICAGO 4, IOWA 1
- Center Morgan Geekie scored two goals in the first period as the Wolves set a franchise record for fastest start to the season as they improved to 7-0-0-0.
- Center Rem Pitlick added his sixth goal of the season — tied for the AHL lead — while Tanner Jeannot added an empty-net goal and defenseman Joey Keane handed out two assists.
- Goaltender Beck Warm stopped a career-high 40 shots in the win.
SATURDAY, FEB. 20: (at) CHICAGO 10, IOWA 2
- Center Morgan Geekie scored 19 seconds into the game to set the tone for four goals in the first eight minutes, nine goals in the first 23 minutes and the Wolves’ first 10-goal game since 2007.
- Geekie, Rem Pitlick and Seth Jarvis scored two goals apiece while Tom Novak delivered a team-high four points as 15 skaters produced points and set a team single-game record with 29 points.
- Goaltender Jeremy Helvig parried 35 shots to earn the win.
TUESDAY, FEB. 16: CHICAGO 3, (at) ROCKFORD 2
- Forward Anthony Richard scored 81 seconds into the game to give the Wolves a lead they would not relinquish in a road win Tuesday night.
- Nineteen-year-old forwards Ryan Suzuki and Phil Tomasino also scored goals — Suzuki’s being his first as a pro — as the Wolves opened a 3-0 lead through two periods.
- Goaltender Beck Warm rejected 37 shots to set a team season-high for saves.
|Friday, Feb. 26||at Grand Rapids||6 p.m.||Van Andel Arena||AHLTV|
|Sunday, Feb. 28||vs. Grand Rapids||3 p.m.||Wolves Training Facility||AHLTV|
|Friday, March 5||vs. Cleveland||7 p.m.||Wolves Training Facility||AHLTV|
|Saturday, March 6||vs. Cleveland||3 p.m.||Wolves Training Facility||AHLTV|
|Saturday, March 13||at Iowa||7 p.m.||Wells Fargo Arena||AHLTV|