ABBOTSFORD CANUCKS VS COLORADO EAGLES SERIES PREVIEW
The Abbotsford Canucks continue their six game homestand this weekend with a crucial pair of games against Pacific Division opponents, the Colorado Eagles.
Abbotsford sits in third place in the division (32-21-2-3) with 69 points, while Colorado (30-19-4-3) hold down fourth place with 67 points. The pair of games on Saturday night and Sunday afternoon will wrap up the four game season series, with each side picking up a victory back in February in Colorado.
Colorado picked up the full two points in the first matchup, with Marc Gatcomb and Linus Karlsson scoring for Abbotsford in a 4-2 Eagles victory. The following night, Arshdeep Bains tallied his eighth of the season before Nils Höglander scored the shootout winner in a 2-1 Canucks win.
Justus Annunen has been the pillar of the Eagles’ goaltending group this season, featuring in 31 games for Colorado. With Jonas Johansson currently in the NHL with the Avalanche, the Eagles recently acquired Keith Kinkaid from the Providence Bruins to pair with Annunen. Kinkaid made his Eagles debut on March 8th in a 2-1 loss in Calgary to the Wranglers. Previously he had gone 8-7-4 in Providence with a Goals Against Average of 3.05 this season.
Squaring off with Annunen and Kinkaid will be Arturs Silovs and Spencer Martin in goal for Abbotsford. Spencer Martin has started in nine of the last 11 Abbotsford games, going 3-5-1 in that stretch. Following a pair of recalls to Vancouver and winning the AHL Goaltender of the Month in February, Arturs Silovs pairs up with Martin to complete the tandem. Silovs ranks amongst the league leaders in several key categories, including wins (2nd), minutes played (4th), shutouts (8th), and games played (3rd).
Charles Hudon leads Colorado in goals with 20, as well as points with 40. 13 of those 20 tallies came on the powerplay, with that marker tying Hudon for the league lead. Jean-Luc Frody leads the Eagles in assists with 22, and also sits second in total points. Former third overall pick in the 2012 NHL draft, Alex Galchenyuk, as well as Callahan Burke both are sitting on 32 points this season, with Galchenyuk doing so in just 31 games.
Colorado’s 162 goals scored is currently the fewest scored by a team currently in a playoff spot across the entire AHL.
As for the Canucks, Linus Karlsson leads active players in goals (17) as well as points (40). Justin Dowling is the team leader amongst active players with 28 assists, having picked up helpers in back-to-back games.
Saturday’s game gets underway from Abbotsford Centre at 7:00pm, and is the team’s “Flaunt Your Flannel” game, where fans are all encouraged to wear flannel or plaid clothing to the game. Sunday’s game features a matinee 4:00pm puck drop. Following the series with Colorado, Abbotsford hosts Ontario on Friday and Saturday nights before hitting the road for a five game road trip, including stops in Bakersfield, Ontario and Manitoba.
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