29 December 2008

WOLVES WEEKLY PRESS NOTES FOR DEC. 29

Wed., Dec. 31
at Manitoba Moose (21-9-0-1)
MTS Centre
4 p.m.

Fri., Jan. 2
vs. Rockford IceHogs (16-12-0-3)
Allstate Arena
7:30 p.m.

Sat., Jan. 3
at. Rockford IceHogs (16-12-0-3)
Rockford MetroCentre
7 p.m.

WEST SIDE STORY

The Wolves are tied for third place in the West Division with 38 points (18-13-1-1) through 33 outings this season; the West Division is currently the most tightly contested division in the AHL, with first and sixth place separated by a six-point margin; Chicago has notched a .545 winning percentage (11-9-1-1) against division rivals this year.

WOLVES HEADLINES

--- Joe Motzko: Ranks first on the team and second in the AHL with 20 goals in 33 games this season ... Leads the team and shares ninth in the AHL with 33 points ... Paces the club and shares second in the AHL with nine power-play markers ... Tallied six points (4G, 2A) in his last four games, which includes potting a goal in all four contests ... Ranked third on the Wolves and 14th in the AHL with a career-high 70 points in 72 games last season

--- Jeff Hamilton: Leads the team with 17 assists and ranks second with 22 points and five power-play goals despite appearing in just 21 games this season ... Tallied at least one point in 14 of his 21 outings with the Wolves, which includes four multiple-point outings - three of which were three or more ... His average of 1.05 points per game ranks first on the team ... Recorded eight points (3G, 5A) during a season-high six-game point streak from Dec. 13 to Dec. 26 ... Posted nine goals, 15 assists and 24 points in 58 games with the NHL's Carolina Hurricanes and nine points (3G, 6A) in nine AHL matchups with the Albany River Rats last year

--- Brett Sterling: Ranks second on the team with nine goals and third with 20 points in 21 games ... Ranks fifth with 11 assists and is tied for the team lead with two game-winning goals ... Netted five points (2G, 3A) in his last four games ... Recorded a goal in three NHL games with Atlanta this season ... Ranked second on the Wolves with 38 goals and 71 points in 70 contests last year

--- Ondrej Pavelec: Leads the AHL with a 2.07 goals-against average and ranks third in the circuit with a .925 save percentage ... Posted a 6-5-1 record in 12 matchups with the Wolves this season ... Appeared in 11 NHL outings with Atlanta this year, registering a 3-6-0 record with a 3.55 goals-against average and .884 save percentage ... Recorded a 33-16-3 record in 52 outings with the Wolves last season ... Led rookie goaltenders and ranked second in the league with 33 wins, the second most in franchise history

--- Spencer Machacek: Shares first among Wolves rookies and sixth on the squad with 14 points (5G, 9A) in 30 outings this season ... Ranks seventh on the team with nine assists and shares second with a +9 plus/minus rating ... Led the Vancouver Giants (WHL) with 33 goals and 78 points, which ranked 14th in the league, in 70 regular-season games last season

WOLF TRACKS

--- The Wolves have held their opponents to 88 goals through 33 outings this season (2.69 per game), which ranks second in the American Hockey League and includes allowing two or fewer goals in 19 contests (14-4-1-0).

--- Chicago lost for just the second time this season when entering the third frame with the lead on Saturday; the Wolves have posted an .882 winning percentage when leading after two periods this season (15-2-0-0).

--- The Wolves have allowed 21 goals in the second period this year, the fewest in the AHL; Chicago is outscoring opponents by 12 markers in the middle frame this season.

--- The Wolves have potted 11 man-advantage markers in the last 10 games; Chicago ranks 28th in the league with an 11.7 percent efficiency rating on the power play (21 of 179).

--- Chicago has allowed a power-play goal in five straight games, including a season-high four to Milwaukee on Saturday; the Wolves rank 28th in the league with an 80.4 percent efficiency rating on the penalty kill (148 of 184).

ANTE UP FOR THE ARMED FORCES

--- The Wolves will be collecting various items to be mailed to troops serving overseas during home games on Fri., Jan. 2, Wed., Jan. 7 and Sat., Jan. 10. Donation suggestions include: iTunes Gift Cards, new DVDs, phone cards, new video and computer games and other gift certificates. Everyone who brings in an item will receive a raffle ticket for a chance to win a 2008-09 team signed helmet and other Wolves prizes

WOLVES REWIND (0-2-0-0)

Sat., Dec. 27 Milwaukee 5, (at) Chicago 3,
--- The Wolves carried a 3-0 lead into the third period before the Milwaukee Admirals' offense awoke and sunk the ship with five third-period goals to steal a 5-3 victory at the Allstate Arena Saturday night
--- Forwards Spencer Machacek, Joe Motzko and Steve Martins potted goals for Chicago
--- Goaltender Ondrej Pavelec posted 20 saves in the loss, which includes holding the Admirals scoreless for the first 44:48 of the game

Fri., Dec. 26
(at) Rockford 6, Chicago 2
--- The Wolves fell behind 1-0 just 23 seconds into the contest and never could recover as the Rockford IceHogs skated off with a 6-2 victory at the Rockford MetroCentre Friday night
--- Forwards Joe Motzko and Brett Sterling tallied markers for Chicago
--- Goaltender Ondrej Pavelec turned aside 16 of 21 shots