As the Marlies continue their push for the playoffs with two games this week, they will be without their best point producer in Nazem Kadri as big club duty calls. He has certainly earned another shot as of late. A five point week, including goals in three straight games, had moved Kadri into seventh place in the AHL rookie scoring race with 41 points in just 44 games played. Defenceman Matt Lashoff, the Marlies’ second best point producer from the blueline with 28 points on the season, will join Kadri on the big club as Wilson will likely make a Marlies infusion on the Leafs‘ struggling powerplay starting Wednesday against Carolina. Indications are that 20-year-old Jake Gardiner, a point a game defenceman with Wisconsin this season, will join the Marlies and help fill the void. Without further adieu, your weekly Marlies release:
The Marlies went 2-1-0-1 during their four games last week. Toronto opened their week with a 3-2 shootout win over the Rockford IceHogs on Tuesday night. Ben Scrivens turned aside 36 saves on 38 shots for the win; while Nazem Kadri recorded the shootout winner.
On Friday night in Rochester, the Marlies held on for a 6-5 win over the Americans. After scoring the gameâ€™s first six goals, the Amerks replied with five straight to make it a one-goal game. Joe Colborne registered a goal and two assists in the win.
The Lake Erie Monsters edged the Marlies 3-2 on Saturday afternoon. Toronto scored a pair of second period goals, but the Monsters replied with three unanswered tallies for the win.
On Sunday, the Texas Stars used a shootout to drop Toronto 2-1. Nazem Kadri scored the lone Marlie goal in the loss.
– The Marlies have posted a record of 9-4-1-2 over their past 16 games. They sit just two points out of first place in the North division standings.
– Torontoâ€™s penalty killing unit has been solid through the first 70 games this season, ranking first in the AHL with an 86.9% success rate. Toronto has allowed only 10 power play goals over their past 25 games.
– Ben Scrivens has appeared in eight straight games for the Marlies and has posted a 4-3-1 record with a 2.20 goals against average and 0.929 save percentage during that span. Scrivens ranks fifth in the AHL this season in save percentage (0.926) and 10th in goals against average (2.32).
– The Marlies 19 road victories currently rank first (tie) in the North Division and fourth (tie) in the AHL. Toronto has only three more road games remaining on their 2010-11 schedule.
– Mike Zigomanis notched his 14th goal of the season on Saturday afternoon against Lake Erie. The Marlies leading scorer has collected 27 points (nine goals, 18 assists) over his last 29 outings.
– Defenceman Simon Gysbers has collected 19 points (three goals, 16Â assists) over his past 25 games. He ranks first on the Marlies defence in points with 29 (seven goals, 21 assists) this season.
– Torontoâ€™s 201 goals so far this season ranks second in their division and third (tie) in the Western Conference.
The Marlies begin their two game week on Friday night when they travel to Syracuse to take on the Crunch. It will be the third of four meetings, and second in Syracuse, between the two clubs. Toronto has defeated the Crunch in two previous matchups this season, including most recently, 5-2 at the Oncenter. Fabian Brunnstrom scored two goals in the win on January 28th. The two clubs will meet again in Toronto on March 30 in the Marlies final school day game of the season.
Toronto hosts the Adirondack Phantoms on Saturday afternoon at 3 p.m. The Marlies defeated the Phantoms 5-1 back on November 11. Five different Marlie players scored in the victory. Former Marlies assistant head coach, Joe Paterson is the current head coach of the Phantoms. Adirondack currently ranks eighth in the East Division with a record of 22-33-4-6.
The Reading Royals currently rank first in the Atlantic division with a record of 38-19-2-3. Reading had their two game winning streak snapped on Sunday with a 7-3 loss to Toledo.”
The Playoff Picture (standings couresty of theahl.com):