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Game Day Blog Archive

Game Day Blog Entry: November 25, 2017

11/25/2017 7:56 AM - Adam Turner

This Week
-The Grizzlies enter tonight with standings points in 11 of the last 14 games at 6-3-4-1 and with a .607 winning percentage since their 0-4 start.
-Utah is in Colorado Friday and Saturday and Idaho the following weekend sandwiched between two weekday games against Idaho on Monday, December 4 and Wednesday, December 6.
-The next weekend home stand is Friday, December 15 and Saturday, December 16 against Rapid City.
-Utah and Manchester will next meet March 16 and 17 in Manchester which is located 45 minutes from Boston.

The Home Stand
-Utah is 1-2-2-1 on the home stand with points in four of six games.
-Utah has been tied or ahead in the third period in all six games.
-Utah has one third period goal in six games and has been unable to break a tie in the third period to take a lead.
-Cliff Watson, Ryan Walters, Greger Hanson and Taylor Richart are tied for the home stand lead with two goals.
-17 different players have recorded a point.
-Kevin Carr is 1-1-1-1 on the home stand with a 2.43 Goals-Against-Average and a .911 Save Percentage.

The Series So Far
-Wednesday’s game had three combined goals and a 1-1 tie was broken in a shootout with Friday’s game seeing 11 goals and four in the first 19:29 of the game.
-Wednesday’s game saw the two teams starting goaltenders combine to stop 48 of 51 shots through overtime with Charles Williams stopping 24 of 25 and Kevin Carr stopping 25 of 26.
-Friday’s game saw 11 goals with each team’s backup under contract with an NHL team. (Angus Redmond 35/43) and Evan Cowley (39/42).
-Utah is 2-8 on the power-play and after going 4-4 on the penalty-kill Wednesday went 1-4 Friday.
-Ryan Misiak has scored in both games with one goal and one assist.
-Utah has 39 or more shots in two of the last three games.
-Last night they recorded 40 or more shots for the fourth time this season.
-20 shots in the first period eclipsed the previous first period high by five shots and was three off of the previous season high from the second period in Allen on November 1.
Goals By Defensemen
-Two of Utah’s four leading goal scorers are defensemen in Taylor Richart (7) and Cliff Watson (5)
-15 of Utah’s 48 goals have come from four defensemen with Mitch Jones having 2 and Sam Windle having 1.
-Two of Utah’s five leading scorers this season are defensemen.

Game Day Blog Entry: November 24, 2017

11/24/2017 4:44 PM - Adam Turner

Second Half Team
-Utah looks to get above .500 for the first time this year after their 0-4 start.
-This is their seventh chance to do so.
-They are 0-1-4-1 when attempting to get above .500.
-That being said, it is the fifth time in the last six years that the Grizzlies went into Thanksgiving at .500 or less despite finishing with 38, 37, 39 and 36 wins the previous four seasons.
-They are .500 or better in all five of the previous seasons after Thanksgiving and well above .500 after Thanksgiving in four-straight years.

Wednesday Night
-Manchester beat Utah 2-1 in a shootout in the Grizzlies first shootout contest of the season.
-The game was tied for 44:51 after Manchester held a 1-0 lead for 20:09; for the final 4:46 of the first and the first 15:23 of the second.
-Utah went 1-5 on the power-play and 4-4 on the penalty-kill.
-27 shots allowed was tied for the third fewest shots allowed by the team this year after Utah allowed 25 shots, their second lowest allowed this year in their previous contest on Saturday.
-25 shots for Utah was the fewest shots for Utah this year and two shots in the third period was the fewest amount of shots for Utah in a game this year.
-Utah outshot Manchester 23-17 through two periods before being outshot 6-2 in the third period.
-Joel Lowry was the only player on either side with more than three shots, he had four.
-Chris Leibinger, Ryan Olsen and Cliff Watson led Utah with three shots. Three Manchester had three shots as well.

Out Of The Gate
-Utah has outshot the opposition 38-23 in the first period over the last three games despite being outscored 3-1.
Special Teams
-Utah has won the special teams battle in three of their last four games after losing it in two of their previous three.
-Utah is 12 for their last 13 on the penalty-kill and 3-18 on the power-play in this stretch, with a  power-play goal in three of their last four games.
-Utah has at least one power-play goal in six of their last nine games after just two in their first eight games.

Defenseman Back
-James Melindy practiced with the Anaheim Ducks AHL affiliate in San Diego this morning and then was reassigned to Utah.
-He was called up after the game on November 5 after playing in three games with Utah November 3-5 after previously being called-up after the game on October 21.
Getting Higby Going
-After scoring 14 goals for Utah each of the previous two seasons, Erik Higby recorded his first goal of the year in his 13th game Wednesday.
-Each of the previous two seasons, Higby has had three goals before Thanksgiving before getting going. 
Knock On Wood 
-The Grizzlies have one injured player right now in Jon Puskar, who has been out of the lineup after sustaining an injury on October 18 in Boise.
-That being said, Utah will have four healthy scratches tonight.
Extra Time
-Utah has gone past regulation in three-straight games for the second time this year after previously doing it November 3-5.
-Utah last went past regulation in four-straight games March 10-16, 2013 in a game against Colorado, two against Bakersfield and one against San Francisco.

Game Day Blog Entry: November 22, 2017

11/22/2017 7:02 AM - Adam Turner

 Ducks Vs Kings

-This matchup features teams with Southern California NHL affiliates in Utah with Anaheim and Manchester with Los Angeles.
-Utah went 16-10-5 at home against Ontario who was Los Angeles’ ECHL affiliate from 2008-2015 and 25-20-8 overall.
Last Time Out
-Utah and Manchester last met on January 5, 2005 as the Monarchs beat Utah 5-1 during the NHL Lockout in the AHL.
-Manchester’s last game in Utah was a 5-3 win over Utah on October 20, 2004.
-The two teams also met at Staples Center in Los Angeles that season with Manchester beating Utah 5-0.
-Utah went 2-3-2 against Manchester in the AHL from 2003-2005.
-Kevin Carr stopped 30 of 32 shots against Manchester in his only career start on February 26, 2017 as Alaska beat the Monarchs 7-2.
-Brad Navin had two assists in two games against Manchester last February with Alaska, Mitch Jones had one assist in two games.

Defensive Similarities
-Utah features the ECHL’s leading goal scorer by defensemen in Taylor Richart with 7 and is fourth in scoring by defensemen.
-Manchester’s Colton Saucerman leads ECHL defensemen with 11 assists and is fifth in scoring by defensemen.
-Manchester is fourth on the penalty-kill and Utah is sixth.
Logjam Continues
-Spots 2-5 in the Mountain Division with Colorado, Allen, Utah, Idaho and Tulsa are all separated by four points at 20-16.
-Colorado has 20, Idaho has 20, Allen has 19 and Utah has 16.
-Those four teams are a combined 11-1-2-3 over their last 17 combined games.

Game Day Blog Entry: November 18, 2017

11/18/2017 12:22 AM - Adam Turner

 The Situation
-With the standings point last night, Utah is now 6-2-3-0 in their last eleven contests for 15 of 22 standings points and a .681 winning percentage after their 0-4 start.
-Utah hosts Manchester Wednesday Friday and Saturday to wrap up their seven-game home stand.
-Utah will next see Colorado December 1 and 2 at Budweiser Event Center and then December 20 and 22 back in Colorado and then back December 23 in Utah as the Grizzlies will play five of 13 December games against the Eagles.

 Last Night
-The game was tied for 47:29 of regulation as Utah led for 6:55 and Colorado led 2-1 for 5:36.
-Utah drew five of seven power-plays.

Close Colorado/Early
-Utah and Colorado have now played three-straight one-goal contests to start their season series for the second-straight season.
-Last year, Utah started 2-0-1-0 in the first three, this year Colorado has edged out three-straight one-goal wins.
-Nine of Utah’s 15 games to start the season have been decided by a goal, six have gone to overtime as the Grizzlies are 3-3 past regulation.
-Four of Utah’s last six games and six of the last 11 have been decided past regulation.
-Last year starting in game four, eight of nine games between Utah and Colorado were decided by two goals or more after the close games early.
Scoring Early
-Utah has outscored the opposition 3-0 in the last two first periods.
-Utah has been tied or ahead going to the third period in all three games on this home stand so far.

Special Teams Against Colorado, Overall
-Utah is 1-12 on the power-play and 11-11 on the penalty-kill against Colorado.
-Utah is 2-10 on the power-play and 6-6 on the penalty-kill in their last two games.
Hanson Picks Up Where He Leaves Off
-Greger Hanson has a Utah season-high six game scoring streak with five goals and five assists after he returned to Utah last night with two goals for the first time in three weeks after four games with Anaheim’s AHL affiliate in San Diego.

Pelech’s Points
-Michael Pelech has scored in nine of the last 13 games and five of the last six.
-He has six goals and 10 assists for 16 points in the last 13 games after going scoreless in the first two games of the year.
-He leads Utah with five multiple-point games.

Last Five Games: Players With Two Goals
-The Grizzlies have a player with two goals in two-straight games with Ryan Walters getting two on November 11 and Greger Hanson with two last night
-Utah has a player with two goals in three of the last five games with Brendan Harms getting two goals on November 4 in Tulsa.
-In that five game stretch, the Grizzlies have scored four goals or more in three of the last five games.


Game Day Blog Entry: November 17, 2017

11/17/2017 12:55 PM - Adam Turner

-Utah has scored four goals or more in three of the last four games.
-This is only the third of eight Grizzlies home game so far against the Mountain Division as Norfolk, Worcester and Fort Wayne have paid early visits.

Winning Recipe
-Utah is 6-0-1-0 when scoring first this year and 5-0-1-0 when scoring a power-play goal.
-All Utah wins have come when scoring first as have both Colorado wins as they are 7-1-2-0.
-Both teams are 5-0 when leading after one period.
-Utah is 5-0-1-0 when scoring a power-play goal.
Hanson Back
-Greger Hanson has returned to the Grizzlies after four games with Anaheim’s AHL affiliate in San Diego and will be in the lineup tonight.
-At the time of his call-up, he was Utah’s second leading scorer with three goals and five assists for eight points in seven games.
-After going scoreless in the first two games against Colorado, Hanson scored in five-straight games before his call-up and had two multiple-point games.
-Utah’s leading point-per-game scorer, through the first month, Kyle Thomas remains in San Diego.
Opening Weekend
-Colorado beat Utah 3-2 and 2-1 in two games to open the season on October 13 in Colorado and October 14 in Utah.
-Utah went 0-7 on the power-play and 9-9 on the penalty-kill.
-Utah tied each game at one after falling behind in the first period and never led on the weekend.
-Angus Redmond stopped 25 of 27 in his professional debut on October 14.
-Taylor Richart and Brad Navin both scored in each game with one goal and one assist.
-Utah outshot Colorado 66-55.
Since Opening Weekend
-Utah has gone unbeaten in eight of 12 at 6-4-2-0, Colorado is 5-4-2-0.
-Utah is 6-2-2-0 in last ten, Colorado is 1-4-2-0 in their last seven.
-Spots 2-6 in the Mountain Division with Colorado, Allen, Utah, Idaho and Tulsa are all separated by three points at 17-14.
Final Notes
-Ryan Misiak has two goals and one assist in his last four.
-Brendan Harms has two goals and two assists in his last four.
-Carr is fourth in the ECHL in minutes played at 543 and fourth in saves at 262.
-Angus Redmond is unbeaten in two of his last three starts with at least .900 save percentages in 2 of the last 3.

Game Day Blog Entry: November 11, 2017

11/11/2017 7:55 AM - Adam Turner

 Coming Home
-The Grizzlies lost for the first time in regulation in the last five games Friday night as Fort Wayne broke a 2-2 third period tie.
-After tonight, the Grizzlies will be off until hosting Colorado next Friday Saturday.

Last Night
-Utah outshot Fort Wayne 35-31 and drew four of the six power-plays.
-Ryan Olsen led Utah with seven shots, Erik Higby, Ryan Misiak and Cliff Watson all had four shots.
-35 shots is the second most that Fort Wayne has allowed this year as they entered the evening allowing the fewest shots in the league at 27 shots per contest.
-Kevin Carr stopped 27 of 30 shots.
-Utah led for 2:35 in the second and Fort Wayne led for 3:50 in the first in a game that was tied for 33:35 of the first 40 minutes.
-Special Teams scoring was 1-0 Fort Wayne.
Plus Player
-Sam Windle is a plus-four in his last two games after a plus-three Sunday and a plus-one last night.
-He’s been an even or better in five of the last six games.
Late Call-Up
-Utah leading scorer Kyle Thomas was called up to Anaheim’s AHL affiliate in San Diego after an injury during their morning skate Friday.
-Entering the week, he led the ECHL with 12 assists.
-Thomas has scored in nine of the last ten games.
Still Among The League Leaders
-Taylor Richart is fifth in the ECHL in scoring by defenseman with five goals and four assists for nine points in 13 games.
-He is tied for league lead on goals by defensemen in five.
Walters Comings and Goings
-Ryan Walters has rejoined Utah after a call-up Thursday


Game Day Blog Entry: November 10, 2017

11/10/2017 12:25 PM - Adam Turner

Shooting and Scoring
-The Grizzlies enter the week having scored four goals in two-straight games for the first time this year.
-Utah had 38 or more shots in the first three games tallying 44,38 and 42 before 28 Sunday.

Walters Comings and Goings
-Ryan Walters was loaned to the Belleville Senators yesterday, but will rejoin the Grizzlies for tomorrow’s game.
Since Last Weekend
-James Melindy, who rejoined the Grizzlies on their road trip last week, has been recalled to San Diego.
Home Debut
-Grizzlies defenseman Chris Leibinger makes his Grizzlies debut tonight after he joined Utah in Tulsa last Friday.
Getting Going
-Ryan Olsen has two goals and two assists for four points in the last six games after one assist in his first six games.
-Ryan Misiak has one goal and one assist in the last two games after two assists in his first ten games.
-Zach Saar has two goals and one assist in his last five games.
-Mitch Jones has his first scoring streak of the year with one goal and two assists in the last two games.
-Michael Pelech has his second three-game scoring streak of the year with one goal and two assists.
-Utah went 18-19 on the penalty-kill on their road trip and they haven’t allowed a power-play goal in five of their last seven games and in seven of 12 games overall this year.

Game Day Blog Entry: November 5, 2017

11/05/2017 10:55 AM - Adam Turner

The Grizzlies are in a position to take seven of eight standings points with a win today as the wrap up four games in less than 96 hours over five days in three different cities.

A Utah win today and an Allen win over Tulsa in regulation moves the Grizzlies to third place in the Mountain Division.

A win today by Kevin Carr ties him for the league lead in wins. Kyle Thomas is tied for the league lead with 11 assists. Thomas is tied for second in the ECHL in shots. He has six shots or more in three of the last four games. The top five shooters in the ECHL are all from the Mountain Division.

In his first week back with Utah, Ryan Walters is tied for the league lead in assists and is second in points with six.

James Melindy returns to Wichita where he played in 68 of the first 69 games last year before being called-up to San Diego and earning an AHL contract with Anaheim over the summer.
The Grizzlies last game in Wichita was exactly one year ago today in a 5-3 win and the game-winning goal was recorded by Travis Howe.

The Grizzlies got the first goal of the year last night from Ryan Misiak, the first two goals of the year for Brendan Harms and the second goal of the season from Ryan Olsen. Both of Olsen’s goals this year have been part of third period comebacks. 

Game Day Blog Entry: November 4, 2017

11/04/2017 9:38 AM - Adam Turner

The Grizzlies have won five-straight games when scoring the first goal. Utah is also 4-0 when scoring a power-play goal. The Grizzlies have moved into third in the 27-team ECHL in goals allowed at just 2.70 goals allowed per-game.

The Mountain Division is tight three weeks into the season with six of seven teams separated by four points all at .500 or better. Utah, Allen, Tulsa and Idaho all have ten points. This Allen, Wichita, Tulsa trip features all division opponents with Tulsa and Wichita both in the Mountain Division this year.

Last night the Grizzlies power-play scored two power-play goals in a game for the first time this year and improved to 13-13 on the penalty-kill on the road trip. The Grizzlies are 3-13 on the power-play on the trip and 3-13 since adding Ryan Walters to the lineup. He has assists on three-straight Utah power-play goals. Before this week, Utah was 2-36 on the power-play. Utah hasn’t allowed a power-play goal in four of the last five games and in six of ten games this year. 

Taylor Richart now has the sole ECHL lead in game-winning goals with three, two have come in overtime. The Grizzlies have scored on all three overtime shots to improve to 3-0 in overtime games, which is tied with Reading for the league lead. Kevin Carr is now tied for the league lead with four wins.

Along with four Michigan Tech players with the addition of Chris Leibinger, here is the heavy state-by-state breakdown of this year’s team. Utah has five players from Michigan, five from Wisconsin; including Head Coach Tim Branham, four from Minnesota and two from Massachusetts. Utah has six Canadians, two of which are goaltenders Kevin Carr and Angus Redmond.

Game Day Blog Entry: November 3, 2017

11/03/2017 9:36 AM - Adam Turner

James Melindy has rejoined the Grizzlies in Tulsa after being called-up before last weekend. Rookie defenseman Chris Leibinger will also make his Grizzlies debut tonight after being acquired from Quad City on Tuesday.

44 shots by Utah Wednesday was the most that they’ve recorded in a game this season while 24 shots was the fewest that they’ve allowed in a contest this season. 23 shots in the second period was one shy of what Allen had in the game. Nine Utah players had at least three shots in the game.

Outshooting the opponent by 20 was the most since they outshot Missouri by 30 April 7 last year at 54-24.

Usually three goals or more is the magic number for a good winning percentage. This year, Utah is 4-2 when getting two goals or more.

Utah has two of the top five ECHL leading goal scorers by defensemen in Taylor Richart (4) and Cliff Watson (3). Overall, they are two of the Grizzlies leading four goal scorers. Since joining the ECHL in 2005, the Grizzlies have never had a defenseman higher than seventh in goal scoring and that was Andy Sertich with 12 goals in 2008-2009. Cliff Watson leads ECHL rookies and defenseman in shots with 31 and is second overall in the league.

Kevin Carr made 48 starts at BOK Center with Tulsa and one with Alaska last year.

Game Day Blog Entry: November 1, 2017

11/01/2017 9:38 AM - Adam Turner

This is Utah’s first visit to Allen since last year’s playoffs when they beat the Americans 4-1, by scoring four unanswered goals, in game two of that playoff series. It was their first win here in five games.

Ryan Walters will make his 17-18 debut with the team tonight after being acquired Monday after starting the season in Belarus.

Ryan Olsen enters the game with a two-game scoring streak with one goal and two assists.

Greger Hanson, who played the last four seasons with Allen, and signed with the Anaheim organization over the summer is currently with their AHL affiliate in San Diego and won’t be in uniform tonight. Former Grizzlies forward Mathieu Aubin, who was with Utah for the last four years, is with Allen but on injured reserve and won’t play tonight either.

The Grizzlies acquired Chris Leibinger yesterday. He was a player the Grizzlies had been watching coming out of college at Michigan Tech, where he played last year with current Utah teammates Cliff Watson and Angus Redmond. He played three seasons there with current Utah captain C.J. Eick as well. He had one assist and a plus-three with Quad City this season. He’ll join Utah for Friday’s game in Tulsa.

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