Stats, standings, and predictions for the Abbotsford Canucks’ final home doubleheader of the season
Photo credit:Candice Ward-USA TODAY Sports
13 days ago
EDIT: this write-up refers to this weekend’s doubleheader as the “last of the season,” which is incorrect. In fact, all references to Abbotsford’s end-of-season schedule being light on home dates are incorrect! I transcribed Abbotsford’s schedule incorrectly when prepping my information. My bad, folks!
The Abbotsford Canucks take on the Ontario Reign for their last home doubleheader before hitting the road for nine of their final ten games of the season.
It’s been a tough stretch for the Farm team of late, with Vancouver’s injury situation decimating Abbotsford’s once Mariana’s Trench-like depth due to call-ups.
From late November to mid-January—games 15 through 34—the Abbotsford Canucks were one of the hottest teams in the AHL, winning 16 of 20, with points in 17/20. After the team’s game against the San Jose Barracuda, in which Jack Rathbone was stretchered off the ice, the points started drying up. Abbotsford would lose seven of their next ten games.
Following Abbotsford’s Rathbone-less slump, Vancouver recalled Phil Di Giuseppe, Vasily Podkolzin, Nils Äman, as well as Christian Wolanin, Guillaume Brisebois, and Noah Juulsen shortly thereafter to the big club. While we’re sure that Canucks fans love seeing Abbotsford roll out a d-core comprised of Brady Keeper and a handful of young prospects like Rathbone, Jett Woo, Alex Kannok Leipert and rookies Quinn Schimemann and Chad Nychuk, the considerable lack of experience and depth has hurt the team and resulted in a subpar record down the stretch.
The youthful team hosts three more home games through the remainder of the season, all against the Ontario Reign, starting Friday night! Before we preview the weekend’s series, let’s see how we fared in last week’s predictions!
Week 22 predictions review
That said, we predict Abbotsford will win both games against Colorado, with Silovs and Martin picking up shutouts.
The Abbotsford Canucks were 10 seconds away from our predictions, being almost 50% accurate!
Unfortunately, a pulled goaltender gave the Colorado Eagles an extended 6-on-5, and sadly, the game-tying goal before edging the home team in the shootout.
Though they didn’t pick up shutouts, it was a remarkable weekend for goaltenders Spencer Martin and Arturs Silovs.
For Martin, Saturday’s 4-2 victory featured his third-best save percentage since rejoining Abbotsford. For Silovs, while we’re sure he’d have appreciated the shutout instead, his 0.971 save percentage goes down as his second-best save percentage performance of the season following his three shutouts.
Current all-situations scoring leaders
Current 5v5 scoring leaders
Games 59 & 60 versus the Ontario Reign
No team in the AHL’s Pacific Division has had a worse run of games of late than the Ontario Reign. Over their last ten, they’ve mustered just two wins, the fewest of all teams. The Reign aren’t bad by any stretch. They are simply not the powerhouse they were last season, with call-ups similarly affecting the LA Kings’ affiliate’s performance.
On the season, the Reign are quite mid, as the children say! Ontario ranks 15th in total goals scored and 15th in goals scored per game, with the 15th-highest team shooting percentage at 10.38%. Despite their rather mid goalscoring stats, the Reign owns the 6th-best power play and 3rd-best penalty kill in the league. Their goaltending platoon ranks Ontario 8th-best in the league by goals conceded per game and sits with the 7th-best team save percentage at 0.905.
Following their crushing 2-1 shootout loss to Colorado, the Abbotsford Canucks rank 6th by total goals and 9th by goals scored per game with the 13th-highest team shooting percentage at 10.47%. The Farm special teams pale in comparison to Ontario, with the 16th-best power play and 7th-worst PK in the league. Fortunately, despite the struggling special teams’ units, the Farm’s goaltending tandem has never been better. Farmies’ regulars will remember when the club was receiving the 5th-worst save percentage in the league from their goaltending platoon. Martin and Silovs’ stellar play has leapfrogged the team’s average save percentage from 5th-worst to 21st-best! Still mid, but progressing!
The Reign visit Abbotsford as losers of their last five games, with just one regulation win in their last ten. The Canucks and Reign will become firm friends over the final stretch of the season, where they’ll meet six times over their last 12 games. The Canucks have been eaten alive by the Reign’s power play; four of Ontario’s 10 goals against Abbotsford have come via the power play. The Farm’s first game against the Reign couldn’t have gone worse, losing a blowout on the road 8-2. The rematch went just a smidge better, with Abbotsford eking out a 3-2 decision on the road.
Despite the Reign having recalled their leading scorer among defencemen in Jordan Spence, the Reign won’t be a tough out. The Canucks must stay out of the box at all costs and need more lights-out performances in the net from their tandem.
Week 23 predictions
We jinxed the Farm massively last week with the double shutout prediction.
We’ll avoid the mega-jinx this week and predict that only one goalie will get a shutout this weekend! However, we anticipate both games to require extra time to determine a winner, given both teams’ lack of bodies at this time.
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