Skip to content


March 29, 2024

ROSEMONT, Ill.—The Wolves roared back from an early deficit to drop the Grand Rapids Griffins 4-2 on Friday night at Allstate Arena.

Rocco Grimaldi had two goals—including the game-winner in the third period–and added an assist as the Wolves snapped a seven-game losing skid. Max Comtois chipped in a goal and an assist and Josh Melnick also scored to help Chicago halt Grand Rapids’ winning streak at three contests.

“We shut them down to 16 shots, which is not a lot,” Grimaldi said. “We need more efforts like that defensively, have good structure, good sticks and keep making smart plays with the puck, too.”

After the Griffins jumped out to a 2-0 first-period lead on goals by Riley Sawchuk and Matt Luff—scored just eight seconds apart—the Wolves rallied via the power play to tie it.

First, Comtois pounced on a rebound off a Chris Terry shot and shoveled a backhander past Griffins goaltender Michael Hutchinson and into the net. Terry and Grimaldi earned assists on Comtois’ 17th goal of the season.


The Wolves tied it just under two minutes later—again on the power play. This time, with Cole Schneider providing a screen in front, Grimaldi fired a wrist shot from the left circle that slipped through the pads of Hutchinson. The goal, assisted by Domenick Fensore and Comtois, sent the game into the intermission at 2-2.

“I got it around the dot and started moving down and there were just no options,” Grimaldi said. “I saw the goalie kind of cheating a little bit and I thought I might as well throw it on the ice. I watch guys in the NHL do that all the time and you wonder, ‘how do they do that? One of these days I’m going to try it’ and it worked. That was great.”

After a scoreless second, Grimaldi pushed the Wolves in front early in the third when the veteran forward stole the puck from Griffins forward Elmer Soderblom, raced in from his own zone on Hutchinson before deking the goalie and besting him with a forehand shot. The goal was Grimaldi’s fourth in the last two games to give him a career-high 33 on the season.

“I was kind of just hovering behind (Soderblom),” Grimaldi said. “He’s more than a foot taller than me and he didn’t know I was there the whole time. I was probably behind him a good five to 10 seconds and once he got the puck, I was just waiting for him to move it to his backhand so that I had a chance to strip and go. Thankfully, he did move it to his backhand and I stripped him.

“The ‘D’ were really wide and I had a breakaway,” Grimaldi continued. “I was going to take a slap shot and then I didn’t, thankfully. Big goal.”


Melnick capped the scoring with a shorthanded, empty-net score, his sixth goal of the season.

Keith Kinkaid (14 saves) earned the win in goal for the Wolves while Hutchinson (22 saves) suffered the loss for the Griffins.

Chicago improved to 22-31-4-5 on the season while Grand Rapids dropped to 32-19-7-4.

Next up: The Wolves host the Rockford IceHogs on Saturday night (7 p.m.) at Allstate Arena.

For information on Wolves ticket plans for the 2023-24 season—everything from single-game tickets to Flex Packs to group outings—visit chicagowolves.com or call 1-800-THE-WOLVES.