PENGUINS – CHECKERS COMPARISON


The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins and Charlotte Checkers meet in the first round of the Calder Cup Playoffs, and to get you ready, we’ve put together this quick side-by-side comparison on how the teams fared this season.

2017-18 REGULAR SEASON STATS

PENGUINS CHECKERS
RECORD 45-22-6-3, 99 PTS 46-26-1-3, 96 PTS
GOALS FOR/AGAINST 252/233 262/212
PENALTY MINUTES 1,161 902
POWER PLAY 41/298 – 13.8% 70/343 – 20.4%
PENALTY KILL 291/355 – 82.0% 255/314 – 81.2%

2017-18 REGULAR SEASON LEADERS

PENGUINS CHECKERS
GAMES Kevin Czuczman – 71 Andrew Poturalski & Philip Samuelsson – 76
GOALS Daniel Sprong – 32 Valentin Zykov – 33
ASSISTS Daniel Sprong – 33 Lucas Wallmark – 38
POINTS Daniel Sprong – 65 Lucas Wallmark – 55
+/- Zach Trotman – plus-24 Philip Sameulsson – plus-44
PIM Garrett Wilson – 139 Trevor Carrick – 85
PPG Daniel Sprong – 11 Valentin Zykov – 17
SHG Jean-Sebastien Dea – 4 Warren Foegele – 4

2017-18 REGULAR SEASON GOALTENDERS

PENGUINS CHECKERS
Name GP Record GAA SV% SO Name GP Record GAA SV% SO
Anthony Peters 24 12-7-3 2.71 0.907 1 Alex Nedeljkovic 49 31-12-3 2.55 0.903 5
Michael Leighton 6 5-0-0 2.66 0.913 0 Jeremy Smith 30 13-13-1 2.71 0.902 0
Tristan Jarry 16 9-5-2 3.05 0.901 0

This is the second playoff meeting between the Penguins and Checkers, who also faced off in the East Division Final back in 2011.  Charlotte won that series, 4-2.

2011 EAST DIVISION FINAL (CHARLOTTE WINS, 4-2)

Date Road Team Home Team Result
April 28, 2011 Charlotte – 3 WBS – 2 L
April 30, 2011 Charlotte – 0 WBS  – 3 W
May 2, 2011 WBS – 1 Charlotte – 2 (OT) L
May 4, 2011 WBS – 0  Charlotte 1 L
May 6, 2011 WBS – 1 Charlotte – 0 W
May 7, 2011 Charlotte – 4 WBS – 3 L

THE TK FILE

Tom Kostopoulos appeared in the final regular season game of his American Hockey League career this past Saturday, when the Penguins faced off with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms in Allentown.  

And while we are very hopeful that TK still has about two months worth of games ahead of him, we thought the end of the regular season would be a good time to take a look back at some of the names and numbers from his time in the AHL.

So sit back and enjoy these statistical oddities and fun facts that we put together about TK as we get ready for the postseason.


Tom Kostopoulos’ first AHL game on October 12, 1999, against the St. John’s Maple Leafs, and his final game on April 14, 2018 against the Lehigh Valley Phantoms, were 6,760 days apart.

First Goal:  October 13, 1999 at St. John’s Maple Leafs, a 2-2 tie.  Assisted by Martin Sonnenberg.  Goaltender was Jimmy Waite.  Even strength.

First Assist:  October 15, 1999 at Saint John Flames, a 4-4 tie.  Goal scorer was Tyler Wright. Additional assist to Martin Sonnenberg.

Final AHL Goal:  April 6, 2018 vs. the Bridgeport Sound Tigers in a 4-3 loss.  Assists to Daniel Sprong and Kevin Czuczman.  Christopher Gibson in goal.  A power play goal.

Final AHL Assist:  April 8, 2018 at the Bridgeport Sound Tigers in a 5-2 win.  Goal scorer was Christian Thomas.  Additional assist to Jarrett Burton.

Kostopoulos played parts of 12 season in the AHL (1999-2005; 2012-18), appearing in 722 total games (658 with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton; 64 with the Manchester Monarchs).

Kostopoulos’ first stint with the Penguins ran from 1999-2004, and he appeared in 318 games during that time, recording 97 goals, 149 assists, 246 points and 527 penalty minutes.

His second stay in Wilkes-Barre (2012-18) saw him suit up in 341 games, while he netted 89 goals, 134 assists, 223 points and 364 penalty minutes.

Kostopoulos appeared in more games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton than the next two closest players on the team’s all-time list combined (Rob Scuderi – 305; Tim Wallace 304).

His 186 goals with the Penguins are also more than the next two players combined (Tomas Surovy – 89; Tim Wallace – 75).

Kostopoulos’ 469 points for the Pens are nearly 300 more than the two players tied for second place on the team’s all-time list (Toby Petersen and Tomas Surovy – 177 each).

TK’s 211 AHL goals came against 109 different net minders.  He recorded the most goals against his current teammate – Michael Leighton – putting seven behind his goal line (five while TK was with the Penguins, two while a member of the Manchester Monarchs).  Second on the list was Neil Little, who surrendered six goals to Kostopoulos.  Six others were tied at five goals against (Peter Budaj, Anthony Stolarz, Kristers Gudlevskis, Jason LaBarbera, Matt O’Connor and Mike Minard).

Kostopoulos recorded just one empty net goal in his AHL career, that one coming on February 26, 2003 against the Norfolk Admirals.  It was the third goal in his only AHL hat trick.

No Penguin teamed up with Kostopoulos more when it came to goal scoring than Martin Sonnenberg.  Sonny assisted on 23 of TK’s goals, and was the recipient of 18 helpers from Kostopoulos.

There were 107 different skaters who assisted on Kostopoulos goals, and the Penguins captain dished out helpers to 95 different players during his time with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and Manchester.

PLAYER  ASSISTS ON TK GOALS  PLAYER  TK ASSISTED GOALS 
 Martin Sonnenberg  23 Martin Sonnenberg  18
 Shane Endicott 15  Tomas Surovy 17
 Carter Rowney 12  Toby Petersen 15
 Tomas Surovy 11  Carter Rowney 13
 Rob Scuderi 10  Yanick Lehoux 11
 John Slaney 9  Shane Endicott 11
 Nick Drazonevic 9  Noah Clarke 11
 Conor Sheary 9  Jake Guentzel 9
 Tyler Wright 8  Sven Butenschon 8
Toby Petersen 8 Nick Drazenovic 8
Andrew Ebbett 8 Conor Sheary 8
Yanick Lehoux 8
Mike Cammalleri 8

Eight of Kostopoulos’ 211 goals were unassisted.

Kostopoulos played against 43 different teams during his AHL career (including same franchise in a different city, and name change in same city).

Adirondack Phantoms Albany Devils Albany River Rats
Binghamton Devils Binghamton Senators Bridgeport Sound Tigers
Charlotte Checkers Chicago Wolves Cincinnati Mighty Ducks
Cleveland Barons Connecticut Whale Grand Rapids Griffins
Hamilton Bulldogs Hartford Wolf Pack Hershey Bears
Houston Aeros Kentucky Thoroughblades Laval Rocket
Lehigh Valley Phantoms Louisville Panthers Lowell Lock Monsters
Manchester Monarchs Milwaukee Admirals Norfolk Admirals
Philadelphia Phantoms Portland Pirates Providence Bruins
Quebec Citadelles Rochester Americans Rockford Ice Hogs
Saint John Flames San Antonio Rampage Springfield Falcons
Springfield Thunderbirds St. John’s Ice Caps St. John’s Maple Leafs
Syracuse Crunch Toronto Marlies Utah Grizzlies
Utica Comets Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Worcester Ice Cats
Worcester Sharks

Kostopoulos appeared in more games against the Hershey Bears, netted more goals against the intra-state rival, and posted more points versus the chocolate and white, than against any other team – unless you combine his stat line against the Philadelphia/Adirondack/Lehigh Valley Phantoms.  In that case, his goal total against the Phantoms is more than against any other team.

 TEAMS GAMES  VS. (WBS/MCH) TEAMS (COMBINED) GAMES COMBINED (WBS/MCH)
 Hershey Bears 92 (90/2) Hershey Bears  92 (90/2)
 Syracuse Crunch 66 (66/-) PHIL/ADK/LV Phantoms  84 (82/2) | 41-37-6
Norfolk Admirals 49 (47/2) Syracuse Crunch 66 (66/-)
Philadelphia Phantoms 43 (41/2) Norfolk Admirals 49 (47/2)
Binghamton Senators 38 (38/-) Binghamton Senators 38 (38/-)
Lehigh Valley Phantoms 37 (37/-) Hartford Wolf Pack/Connecticut Whale 36 (29/7) | 35-1
Hartford Wolf Pack 35 (28/7) Providence Bruins 35 (26/9)
Providence Bruins 35 (26/9) Bridgeport Sound Tigers 30 (26/4)
Bridgeport Sound Tigers 30 (26/4) Albany River Rats 25 (24/1)
Albany River Rats 25 (24/1) Rochester Americans 25 (25/0)
Rochester Americans 25 (25/0) Springfield Falcons 25 (16/9)
Springfield Falcons 25 (16/9) Portland Pirates 24 (16/8)

 

 TEAMS GOALS  VS. (WBS/MCH) TEAMS (COMBINED) GOALS COMBINED (WBS/MCH)
Hershey Bears 26 (23/3) PHIL/ADK/LV Phantoms  29 (29/0) | 13-13-3
Syracuse Crunch 18 (18/-) Hershey Bears 26 (23/3)
Norfolk Admirals 18 (15/3) Syracuse Crunch 18 (18-)
Philadelphia Phantoms 13 (13/0) Norfolk Admirals 18 (15/3)
Binghamton Senators 13 (13/-) Binghamton Senators 13 (13/-)
Lehigh Valley Phantoms 13 (13/-) Springfield Falcons 9 (5/4)

 

 TEAMS POINTS  VS. (WBS/MCH) TEAMS (COMBINED) POINTS COMBINED (WBS/MCH)
Hershey Bears 79 (76/3) Hershey Bears 79 (76/3)
Syracuse Crunch 39 (39/-) PHIL/ADK/LV Phantoms 65 (65/0) | 32-27-6
Norfolk Admirals 36 (33/3) Syracuse Crunch 39 (39/-)
Philadelphia Phantoms 32 (32/0) Norfolk Admirals 36 (33/3)
Binghamton Senators 30 (30/-) Binghamton Senators 30 (30/-)
Lehigh Valley Phantoms 27 (13/-) Hartford Wolf Pack/Connecticut Whale 22 (16/6) | 22-0
Hartford Wolf Pack 22 (16/6) Albany River Rats 22 (20/2)
Albany River Rats 22 (20/2) Springfield Falcons 22 (13/9)
Springfield Falcons 22 (13/9) Portland Pirates 21 (8/13)

There were two teams Kostopoulos faced in the regular season that he failed to record a point against:  the Connecticut Whale and the Milwaukee Admirals.  He appeared in one game against both of those teams.

Kostopoulos appeared in two games against the Penguins during the 2004-05 season as a member of the Manchester Monarchs.  He recorded a pair of assists in both games (October 16, 2004 – a 7-3 win in Manchester; December 19, 2004 – a 3-1 win in Wilkes-Barre).

PENGUINS TO TAKE ON CHECKERS IN FIRST ROUND


The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins and Charlotte Checkers announced the schedule for their first round match-up in the 2018 Calder Cup Playoffs.  The best-of-five Atlantic Division Semifinal series is set to begin on Friday, Apr. 20 at Bojangles’ Coliseum. The Penguins’ first postseason home game will take place on Thursday, Apr. 26.

The Penguins’ first round schedule is as follows:

Game 1 – Friday, Apr. 20 – W-B/Scranton at Charlotte, 7:00 p.m.

Game 2 – Saturday, Apr. 21 – W-B/Scranton at Charlotte, 6:00 p.m.

Game 3 – Thursday, Apr. 26 – Charlotte at W-B/Scranton, 7:05 p.m.

*Game 4 – Saturday, Apr. 28 – Charlotte at W-B/Scranton, 7:05 p.m.

*Game 5 – Sunday, Apr. 29 – Charlotte at W-B/Scranton, 3:05 p.m.

*if necessary… All times Eastern

Individual game tickets and ticket packages for the 2018 Calder Cup Playoffs are now on sale. With the purchase of a postseason ticket package, fans will receive a $6 food/merchandise voucher for every game played in the playoffs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton fans can secure their seats for every game on the Cup run by contacting the Penguins directly at (570) 208-7367.

You can also request info on Penguins playoff packages and tickets by filling out the form below.

GAME PREVIEW: PENGUINS at BEARS – APRIL 15, 2018

Hershey vs Penguins

The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins 2017-18 regular season wraps up against their instate rival, the Hershey Bears, at Giant Center today at 5:00 p.m.

The Penguins (44-22-6-3, 97 pts, .647%) have secured home ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs, clinching the second spot in the American Hockey League’s Atlantic Division, while the Bears (30-36-4-5, 69 pts, .460%) are last in the same division and will miss the playoffs for the first time in four years.

Today’s game is the 12th and final meeting between the clubs this season.

TIME: 5:00 p.m.
PLACE: Giant Center
WATCHAHLLive.com
LISTENWILK News Radio

SEASON SERIES

DATE HOME ROAD TIME/RESULT
Friday, October 27 WBS Hershey  3-2 WIN
Sunday, November 5 WBS Hershey  2-3 SOL
Sunday, November 12 Hershey WBS  1-5 WIN
Sunday, December 3 Hershey WBS  4-3 OTL
Sunday, December 10 Hershey WBS  1-4 WIN
Saturday, December 30 Hershey WBS  1-2 OT WIN
Wednesday, January 24 Hershey WBS  0-4 WIN
Friday, February 2 WBS Hershey  4-1 WIN
Sunday, February 25 WBS Hershey  3-2 WIN
Sunday, March 18 WBS Hershey  6-4 WIN
Tuesday, April 3 WBS Hershey  5-3 WIN
Sunday, April 15 Hershey WBS  5:00pm

RECENT ACTION

The Penguins and Lehigh Valley Phantoms traded goals in the final two minutes of regulation, but the Phantoms came out on top in a shootout, taking a 2-1 win, on Saturday night at PPL Center. Garrett Wilson cracked the goose egg for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton late in the contest, but the goal was not enough as Chris Conner came back with the equalizer for Lehigh Valley a minute later. Nic Aubé-Kubel scored the only goal of the shootout in the fourth round, granting Lehigh Valley the victory in its final game of the season. Michael Leighton made 30 saves on the night and denied three Phantoms attempts in the shootout, while Alex Lyon turned aside 26 shots in regulation and overtime and went four-for-four on saves in the shootout.

The Bears returned home and wrapped up the season series with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers with a 2-1 win on Saturday at Giant Center. Hershey dictated the majority of play and grabbed an early 1-0 lead with a goal from Jonas Siegenthaler. Mathias Bau scored the game-winner in the second, while Bears goaltender Vitek Vanecek’s work load remained light with only four additional required stops in the second period. Bridgeport ended Vanecek’s bid for his third shutout of the season when Casey Bailey snapped a quick shot past the Hershey netminder at 5:17 of the third period.

PENGUINS NOTES
The Penguins have gone 9-0-1-1 in the season series and have not lost in regulation to the Bears since April 14th 2017

Daniel Sprong established a new franchise record for goals by a rookie with his 31st tally of the season on Friday night in Springfield.

Despite only playing in nine of the 11 matchups between the Penguins and Bears this season, Daniel Sprong leads the series in points with 14 (5+9).

The Penguins continue to be tough to beat with a third period lead, going 28-1-1-0 on the season when leading after two frames.

Chris Summers played in the 450th game in his AHL career Saturday night.

BEARS NOTES
Despite their record, Hershey is 20-1-0-2 when they lead after 40 minutes

Chris Bourque leads the Bears in points with 53 (17+36).

Bourque scored three goals last weekend, giving him 196 in his Hershey career. The forward now sits alone in sole possession of seventh place all-time in franchise history in goals.

Defenseman Connor Hobbs has collected five points (1+4) in his past three games. He posted the first multi-point game of his career (1+2) last Tuesday in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, then returned to the ice Saturday in Charlotte with two assists. Hobbs has registered 16 points (3+13) in 42 games during his rookie season.

Captain Garrett Mitchell’s next game will be his 400th AHL game

CONNECTIONS
Penguins forward Christian Thomas spent the 2016-17 season with the Bears, and led the team in goals (24) and power play goals (12).  His goals, assists (25) and points (49) totals were all career highs.

Bears center Zach Sill spent parts of five seasons with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, and ranks sixth on the team’s all-time list with 277 games played. Sill recorded 73 points (33+40) and 315 penalty minutes with the Penguins between 2009 and 2014.

compiled by Jonathan Kliment

PENGUINS ANNOUNCE FIRST ROUND HOME PLAYOFF DATES


The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins announced the team’s home dates for the first round of the 2018 Calder Cup Playoffs. The Penguins’ opponent in the best-of-five Atlantic Division Semifinal series is still unknown, but the team’s first postseason home game will take place on Thursday, Apr. 26.

The Penguins’ first round home games are as follows:

Game 3 – Thursday, Apr. 26 at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza, 7:05 p.m.

*Game 4 – Saturday, Apr. 28 at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza, 7:05 p.m.

*Game 5 – Sunday, Apr. 29 at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza, 3:05 p.m.

*if necessary… All times Eastern

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton will play either the Charlotte Checkers or Providence Bruins in the first round of this year’s playoffs.

Individual game tickets and ticket packages for the 2018 Calder Cup Playoffs are now on sale. With the purchase of a postseason ticket package, fans will receive a $6 food/merchandise voucher for every game played in the playoffs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton fans can secure their seats for every game on the Cup run by contacting the Penguins directly at (570) 208-7367.

The Penguins’ have one more regular season game before they officially begin their quest for the Calder Cup. Their last game is tomorrow, Sunday, Apr. 14, when they face the Hershey Bears at Giant Center.

GAME PREVIEW: PENGUINS at PHANTOMS – APRIL 14, 2018

The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins take on their divisional rival, the Lehigh Valley Phantoms, at PPL Center Saturday at 7:05pm.

The Penguins (44-22-6-2, 96 pts, .649%) are still fighting to secure home ice advantage in the first round of the Calder Cup Playoffs, as they rank second in the American Hockey League’s Atlantic Division. The Phantoms (46-19-5-5, 102 pts, .680%) have already locked up the division title.

Tonight’s game is the twelfth and final meetings between the clubs this season.

TIME: 7:05 p.m.
PLACE: PPL Center
WATCHAHLLive.com
LISTENWILK News Radio

SEASON SERIES

DATE HOME ROAD TIME/RESULT
Friday, October 13 WBS Lehigh Valley 5-0 WIN
Saturday, October 14 Lehigh Valley WBS  3-2 Loss
Friday, November 3 Lehigh Valley WBS  6-5 WIN
Friday, November 22 WBS Lehigh Valley  4-2 WIN
Saturday, December 6 Lehigh Valley WBS  5-0 Loss
Saturday, December 23 WBS Lehigh Valley  3-2 Loss
Wednesday, December 27 WBS Lehigh Valley  4-5 Loss
Wednesday, January 17 Lehigh Valley WBS  4-1 WIN
Friday, January 26 Lehigh Valley WBS  5-2 Loss
Saturday, February 3 WBS Lehigh Valley  2-1 WIN
Sunday, February 18 Lehigh Valley WBS  2-1 WIN
Saturday, April 14 Lehigh Valley WBS  7:05pm

RECENT ACTION
The Penguins held on to secure two important points in the standings with a 3-2 triumph against the Springfield Thunderbirds on Friday night at MassMutual Center. Daniel Sprong opened the game’s scoring at 15:50 of the first period. Teddy Blueger and Zach Trotman also tallied, with Trotman scoring the game winner at 11:33 of the final frame. The win gave the Penguins a season sweep of Springfield. Tristan Jarry made 28 saves for the victory.

Danick Martel scored twice and Isaac Ratcliffe buried his first professional goal Friday evening, as the Lehigh Valley Phantoms downed the visiting Bridgeport Sound Tigers, 5-2, inside PPL Center. Reece Willcox and Mike Vecchione rounded out the scoring for the Phantoms in front of goaltender Dustin Tokarski, who turned aside 29 of Bridgeport’s 31 total shots.

PENGUINS NOTES
Daniel Sprong established a new franchise record for goals by a rookie with his 31st tally of the season last night.

Despite only playing in nine of the 11 matchups between the Penguins and Phantoms this season, Jean-Sébastien Dea is tied for the lead in points in the series with 10 (5+5).

The Penguins continue to be tough to beat with a third period lead, going 28-1-1-0 on the season when leading after two frames.
Chris Summers next game will be his 450th AHL game

A point in tonight’s game secures home ice advantage for the first round of the Calder Cup Playoffs for the Penguins.

PHANTOMS NOTES
With Friday’s triumph, the Phantoms have posted their highest point total (102) since the Philadelphia Phantoms ended the 2004-05 campaign with 103 standings points before capturing the 2005 Calder Cup Championship.

Friday’s victory also continued Lehigh Valley’s recent stellar play on home ice, as the Phantoms earned their sixth straight home victory and the 16th win over the team’s last 19 games at PPL Center (16-1-2).

Friday’s game marked the ninth multi-point effort and fifth multi-goal game this season for Martel, who has now matched his career high for points in a single season (40).

CONNECTIONS
Phantoms left winger Chris Conner played 87 games with Wilkes-Bare/Scranton from 2009-2011 and 2013-14 registering 76 points (28+48) during his tenure.

Phantoms defender Will O’Neill also played for the Penguins for one season tallying 50 points (8+42) in 2015-16.

Phantoms right winger Colin McDonald played 68 games in a Wilkes-Barre/Scranton uniform in 2011-12 with 49 points (14+35) to his credit.

Penguins left winger Tom Sestito played 46 games for the Phantoms from 2010-2013 when the team was located in Adirondack. He accumulated 20 points (11+9)

Penguins goaltender Michael Leighton also played for the Adirondack Phantoms from 2010-2013 playing in 88 games and recording seven of his AHL career leading 50 shut outs there.

Compiled by Jonathan Kliment

GAME PREVIEW: PENGUINS at THUNDERBIRDS – APRIL 13, 2018


The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins continue their quest for home ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs against the Springfield Thunderbirds, Friday night at Mass Mutual Center.

The Penguins (43-22-6-2, 94 pts, .644%) still hold the second spot in the Atlantic Division with a three-point advantage over Providence, while the Thunderbirds (32-34-5-2, 71 pts, .486%) are in the seventh spot in the same division, but carry a three-game winning streak into tonight’s game.

Friday’s game is the fourth and final meeting between the clubs this season.

TIME: 7:05 p.m.
PLACE: Mass Mutual Center
WATCHAHLLive.com
LISTENWILK News Radio

SEASON SERIES

DATE HOME ROAD TIME/RESULT
Wednesday, December 13 WBS Springfield 4-2 WIN
Friday, January 5 WBS Springfield 6-3 WIN
Wednesday, February 3 Springfield WBS 3-1 WIN
Friday, April 13 Springfield WBS  7:05pm

RECENT ACTION
The Penguins exploded with offense in the first period, and leaned on their goaltender in the later stages of the game, to secure a 5-2 win over the Bridgeport Sound Tigers at Webster Bank Arena on Sunday. Anthony Peters recorded 41 saves for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton while Adam Johnson scored twice 1:17 apart midway through the opening frame. Christian Thomas and Patrick McGrath tacked on tallies at 12:41 and 16:03 of the first period, respectively, and Gage Quinney notched a goal of his own to round out the scoring.

The Thunderbirds dominated the action from start to finish in a 2-0 win over the Hartford Wolf Pack on Sunday night at the XL Center. Harri Sateri finished with 26 stops in the shutout win. Joel Lowry and Anthony Greco provided the offense for the Thunderbirds. Springfield’s offense ended the night with 48 shots.

PENGUINS NOTES
The Penguins clinched a playoff berth for the 16th straight season last Saturday evening. The 16-year postseason streak is the longest current streak in the AHL.

Garrett Wilson’s 40 points this season are a new career high.

With 30 goals on the season, Daniel Sprong has tied the franchise record for most goals by a rookie, set by Michel Ouellet in 2003-04.

Sprong’s goal output this year marks the first 30-goal season by a Penguin since Chris Minard (34) in 2008-09.

THUNDERBIRDS NOTES
Anthony Greco is atop the AHL with most shorthanded goals (6) and leads the AHL in shots with 244.

Springfield is tied for third in the AHL in power play opportunities (327), but they also top the league for the most shorthanded goals against with 14.

Harri Sateri was 3-0-0 in three starts on the road for Springfield last week, stopping 82 of 84 shots for a 0.67 goals-against average and a .976 save percentage, which earned him player of the week honors.

Curtis Valk leads the Thunderbirds in both points (59) and assists (40). His lead in both categories is in double digits over the next closest Thunderbird.

CONNECTIONS
Forward Bobby Farnham spent parts of three seasons (2012-15) with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, recording 39 points (17+22) and 666 penalty minutes in 191 games.

Defenseman Tim Erixon spent two seasons (2015-17) with the Penguins, recording 37 points (7+30) in 119 games.

TOM KOSTOPOULOS – A CELEBRATION


Tom Kostopoulos’ final regular season home game was successful and exciting (a 7-4 win over the Binghamton Devils on April 7, 2018), as well as emotional and memorable, thanks to some of the events going following the captain’s announcement that this would be his final season.

We’ve collected some of the highlights of the night in photos and videos to share with fans.  Take a look back at TK’s big night, and celebrate the career of this Penguins legend.
First, our pregame tribute video to TK.


Here’s a look at some of the non-game events that occurred during the evening, including all of Tom teammates donning 29 jerseys in warm ups, the pregame awards ceremony, and postgame reaction from the Devils and Penguins.


And here’s a selection of photos from around the arena.  Click on the thumbnail below to reveal a larger look.


If you weren’t at the final regular season home game, you still have a chance to see TK in action, as the Penguins have clinched their 16th straight Calder Cup Playoffs appearance.  Dates and an opponent are still to be determined, but we’ve got playoff packages on sale now, which feature a $6 food/merchandise voucher for each home game.  If you’d like more information, just fill in your contact info in the form below, and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

 

GAME PREVIEW: PENGUINS vs SOUND TIGERS – APRIL 6, 2018


The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins continue their final home stand of the year against their divisional foe, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza.

The Penguins (41-21-6-2, 90 pts, .643%) continue to seek points as they look to secure the second playoff position in the Atlantic Division, while the Sound Tigers (35-27-5-3, 78 pts, .557%) sit just outside of a playoff spot in the same division.

Todays’ game is the fifth of six meetings between the clubs this season.

TIME: 7:05 p.m.
PLACE: Mohegan Sun Arena
WATCHAHLLive.com
LISTENWILK News Radio
TICKETS: 570-208-7367 or at the Mohegan Sun Arena Box Office

SEASON SERIES

DATE HOME ROAD TIME/RESULT
Saturday, October 28 Bridgeport WBS/td> 2-5 WIN
Saturday, December 16 Bridgeport WBS 3-2 OT Loss
Wednesday, January 3 WBS Bridgeport  3-2 OT WIN
Sunday, March 25 WBS Bridgeport  3-6 Loss
Friday, April 6 WBS Bridgeport  7:05pm
Sunday, April 8 Bridgeport WBS  3:00pm

RECENT ACTION

The Penguins fended off a late comeback attempt by the Hershey Bears to defeat their I-81 rival, 5-3, at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza on Tuesday night. Tristan Jarry backstopped Wilkes-Barre/Scranton to victory and the Penguins improve to 9-0-1-1 against the Bears this season. The Penguins saw Teddy Blueger, Garrett Wilson, Sam Lafferty, Daniel Sprong, and Jean-Sébastien Dea all score, as Hershey had goals from Connor Hobbs, Anthony Peluso, and Mathias Bau. Jarry made 30 saves in the win for the Penguins.

The Sound Tigers scored twice on the power play Tuesday morning to earn a 3-2 win against the Providence Bruins at Webster Bank Arena. Travis St. Denis netted the game-winner midway through the third period, while Casey Bailey and Kellen Jones also beat goaltender Dan Vladar. Eamon McAdam made 23 saves to guide the Sound Tigers to their fourth win in the last five games. The Sound Tigers finished the game 2-for-5 on the power play, while its penalty kill went 1-for-1.

PENGUINS NOTES
Daniel Sprong was named to the AHL’s All-Rookie Team on Wednesday, and leads all rookies in goals scored (28) and is second in points (57). He is just four points behind Manitoba Moose forward Mason Appleton’s total of 61, despite playing in 12 fewer games.

Sprong’s 28 goals are tied for seventh among all AHL scorers, and his five game-winning tallies are tied for 11th.

Sprong now has points in ten of his past eleven games, totaling seven goals and six assists in that span.

Sam Lafferty recorded his first professional goal in the Penguins win over the Hershey Bears on Tuesday. Lafferty has three points (1+2) in eight games with the Penguins since signing an amateur tryout contract on March 7 after the completion of his senior season at Brown University.

The Penguins have lost only twice when leading after two periods and have a 25-1-1-0 record in that situation.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton has the second-best home record in the AHL at 25-9-1-1 (.722%). Only the Lehigh Valley Phantoms have a better mark at 25-6-3-2 (.764%).

The Penguins lead the season series over the past five years with a 13-7-2-0 record against the Sound Tigers.

SOUND TIGERS NOTES
Travis St. Denis leads the Sound Tigers with 44 points (23+21)

Bridgeport also comes in with the division’s best penalty kill percentage (84.6%).

The Bridgeport Sound Tigers have four players with over 400 games of AHL experience on their active roster
Bridgeport’s Power Play has gone 24% against the Penguins this season

CONNECTIONS
Penguins Defenseman Kevin Czuczman spent two seasons with the Sound Tigers from 2014-16 accumulating 22 points (5+17) and 151 penalty minutes.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s Defenseman Andrey Pedan also spent time in Bridgeport from 2012-15 totaling 42 games for 15 points (5+10).

TOM KOSTOPOULOS TO RETIRE FOLLOWING 2017-18 SEASON


Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins captain Tom Kostopoulos has announced that he will retire from playing following the 2017-18 season, his 19th season of professional hockey.

“I’ve been lucky to make a living playing the game I love for the past 19 seasons,” said the 39-year old Kostopoulos. “I’ve enjoyed every minute of it, but I’m looking forward to spending more time with my wife, Lisa, and kids, Lily and Luc, away from the rink.”

“No player has meant more to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, or represented the organization better, than Tom Kostopoulos,” said team CEO Jeff Barrett. “His commitment to the team, his teammates, the fans and the local community make him a truly unique individual, and one we are extremely lucky to have known for almost 20 years.”

A native of Mississauga, Ontario, Kostopoulos was selected in the seventh round (204th overall) of the 1999 National Hockey League draft by the Pittsburgh Penguins. He made his professional debut with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on October 12, 1999 on the road against the St. John’s Maple Leafs.

Kostopoulos placed second on the Penguins with 26 goals, 32 assists and 56 points as a rookie during the team’s inaugural 1999-2000 campaign, and finished third on the club the following year with 52 points (16+36) while appearing in all 80 regular season games.

In his third season, Kostopoulos paced Wilkes-Barre/Scranton with 27 goals and 53 points in 70 games, and was selected to the Canadian All-Star Team for the 2002 AHL All-Star Classic. He also appeared in 11 contests with the Pittsburgh Penguins, recording a goal in his NHL debut against the Ottawa Senators on December 29, 2001.

Kostopoulos led the team with 42 assists, and ranked second with 63 points, during the 2002-03 campaign, and appeared in eight games with the NHL Penguins. He spent the majority of the 2003-04 regular season with Pittsburgh, posting 22 points (9+13) in 60 games, while also putting up 20 points (7+13) in 21 games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. He then led the AHL club with 23 points (7+16) in 24 postseason games, guiding the Penguins to their second appearance in the Calder Cup Finals.

Kostopoulos suited up for the Manchester Monarchs during the 2004-05 NHL lockout season, recording 71 points (25+46) in 64 contests.

He spent the next seven years exclusively in the National Hockey League, suiting up for the Los Angeles Kings (2005-07), Montreal Canadiens (2007-09), Carolina Hurricanes (2009-10) and Calgary Flames (2010-12). He appeared in his 600th NHL game on March 6, 2012.

Kostopoulos returned to NEPA on January 23, 2013, singing a professional tryout contract with the Penguins. He recorded his 100th goal in a Wilkes-Barre/Scranton uniform on March 1 against the Hershey Bears.

Kostopoulos signed a one-year contract with Pittsburgh after appearing in 17 games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, but was claimed off of waivers by the New Jersey Devils on March 6. He finished out the 2012-13 season by appearing in 15 games with the Devils, picking up one goal and 18 penalty minutes.

The following off-season, Kostopoulos signed an AHL only deal with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, and has spent the past five seasons with the Penguins. He paced the team with 22 goals and 47 points in 2013-14; represented the Penguins at the 2015 AHL All-Star Classic in Utica, serving as team captain for the Eastern Conference; and again led the team with 54 points (24+30) during the 2016-17 season.

Kostopoulos was named the recipient of the AHL’s Fred T. Hunt Memorial Award for sportsmanship, determination and dedication to hockey in 2016, and became just the fourth player all-time to appear in 600 games in both the AHL and NHL when he suited up against the Lehigh Valley Phantoms on February 4, 2017.

Limited to 26 games so far this season, Kostopoulos appeared in his 650th game with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on March 28 against the Providence Bruins.

Fans will have a chance to show Kostopoulos their appreciation, as the Penguins close out their 2017-18 regular season home schedule with games this Friday against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers and Saturday against the Binghamton Devils. Tickets for both games are available at the Mohegan Sun Arena box office, online at TicketMaster.com, or by calling the Penguins at 570-208-7367.

GP

G

A

PTS

PIM

WBS 1999-2004

318

97

149

246

527

WBS 2013-2018

335

88

133

221

362

WBS TOTALS

653

185

282

467

879

MANCHESTER

64

25

46

71

99

AHL TOTALS

717

210

328

538

978

PIT TOTALS

79

10

16

26

76

LA TOTALS

152

15

29

44

173

MTL TOTALS

145

15

20

35

219

CAR TOTALS

99

9

16

25

136

CGY TOTALS

140

11

15

26

101

NJ TOTALS

15

1

0

1

18

NHL TOTALS

630

61

96

157

723

PRO TOTALS

1347

271

424

695

1701

FAN FRIDAY INFO

Would you like more info on tickets for any of our upcoming FAN FRIDAY games? Simply fill in your contact info below, and a Penguins ticket representative will contact you within 48 hours.