Wolf Pack Weekly: Rangers AHL affiliate snap four game skid

Hartford has one game remaining before their holiday break in the American Hockey League. After the conclusion of Wednesday’s game against Bridgeport, the club will have a week off before resuming the remainder of their schedule.

Hartford completed another three games in three days weekend. The Wolf Pack dropped Friday’s (3-1 loss to Lehigh Valley) and Saturday’s (6-4 loss to Springfield) game prior to snapping their four game losing streak (0-3-1) on Sunday at home against Springfield (4-3 shootout win).

The club continued to be inconsistent but showed some signs of finding their groove before being shutdown due to COVID. Fortunately, they are still one of the top teams in the Atlantic Division. In fact, Hartford is only .001 away from Springfield for first in the division (standings in the AHL decided by points%). With a light schedule for the Wolf Pack, a win would leap frog Hartford into first place to begin the holiday break.

Let’s see the latest happenings from the Insurance City.

Wolf Pack Weekly: Specialty Teams Update

Power Play

The power play over the course of the season is improving. At the beginning of the year, Hartford found themselves struggling with the extra man. In the last two months, the power play has been consistent and is able to capitalize on opportunities.

The talented roster continued to produce on the power play, even after their two week pause. Hartford converted on 4 of 12 this weekend. Although they were only a +2 since Springfield capitalized on two short-handed goals in Saturday’s contest.

Hartford is ranked fifth in the American Hockey League for their power play percentage (22.5%). The club registered 18 goals with the man advantage out of 80 opportunities.

Penalty Kill

The penalty kill is a consistent strong mark for the club. From the beginning of the season, Hartford has held their grown while short-handed. The PK group has a mix of youth and veterans that are comfortable playing while down a man. You also have to give credit to the goaltending this season which has buoyed the PK unit many times.

Hartford is ranked ninth in the league for their penalty kill percentage (83.1%). The club was short-handed 77 times and allowed 13 goals against. They also scored four short-handed goals.

Wolf Pack Player Watch

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Wolf Pack Weekly (Kelly Shea / Hartford Wolf Pack)

Tim Gettinger Heats Up

After the pause, the experienced Rangers prospect began to find his production from earlier in the season. The 23 year old forward has points in three of his last four games (two goals and two assists). In addition to his offense heating up, Gettinger continues to perform well in the shootout. The forward scored the shootout game winning goal to help end Hartford’s losing streak on Sunday.

Gettinger has earned himself a top spot (left wing) with the first line. The forward has played well with Jonny Brodzinski (center) and Anthony Greco (right wing).

Captain Brodzinski Leads by Example

Hartford’s veteran captain and continues to help lead the Wolf Pack. Throughout Hartford’s recent woes, he was determined to help steer the ship back to its winning ways.

In Friday’s loss, Brodzinski played well despite being held without a point. The veteran showed the determination to get back on the scoresheet and he played his heart out. He finally ended his three game drought on Saturday.

In Sunday’s contest, the captain tied the game with a blast of a shot and recorded a two point night where Hartford completed another comeback. This time, Hartford was down 3-0 until late in the second period.

Brodzinski continues to pay dividends for the Wolf Pack, proving why he wears the C on a nightly basis.

Anthony Greco Continues Production

The veteran forward had an productive weekend. In the three games played, Greco compiled six points. He had a three assist night on Saturday and a two assist day on Sunday. He also scored a goal on Friday. After a solid start to the season, Greco cooled off in November prior to the pause.

Greco is not afraid to shoot as well. He recorded 15 shots in the three games and leads the team in shots with 87. He is a .95 point per game player.

Zac Jones Injury Update

The talented Rangers prospect played in Friday’s game only. The defenseman was scratched for both contests on Saturday and Sunday. Per Larry Brooks, he is dealing with a lower-body injury.

Teams in the AHL do not specify injuries relating to players. The injury is minor, so Jones should return soon. If he is unable to play in Wednesday, then he will be returning the following week after the holiday break.

Wolf Pack One Timers

  • Lauri Pajuniemi recorded an assist in two straight games last weekend.
  • Morgan Barron recorded a two point game (one goal and one assist) on Saturday. The prospect has points in the last two of four outings.
  • Patrick Khodorenko has points in two straight games. The forward recorded one goal and one assist.
  • Tarmo Reunanen recorded an assist in two straight games. The defenseman has points in the last four of six games (six assists).
  • Keith Kinkaid is 10-1-1 with a 2.61 goals against average and .913 save percentage. Kinkaid is 3-0 in shootouts this season for Hartford and has stopped all shot attempts.

Upcoming Games

Wednesday, December 22nd vs Bridgeport Islanders at 7pm, XL Center

  • This is the sixth of ten meetings in the season series. Hartford leads the series 4-1. The next meeting will be on December 29th as both clubs return from holiday break.
  • Entering the week, Bridgeport compiled a record of 9-14-1-3 for 22 points (.407). That ranks the club seventh in the Atlantic Division and 14th in the Eastern Conference. Bridgeport is 4-5-0-1 in their last ten outings.
  • Veteran forward Chris Terry leads the Islanders in points (22). In 24 games played, Terry recorded nine goals and 13 assists. The forward is held without a point in the last two of three games. Otto Koivula is second among players for points (20).
  • Listen – Mixr. Watch – AHLTV.

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