Providence Bruins

Apr 4, 2017

P-BRUINS WEEK IN REVIEW 3/28/17 – 4/4/17

Providence, RI – There are just six games remaining for the Providence Bruins and the team can taste a fifth straight berth in the Calder Cup Playoffs. The team won two of three games over the weekend to take four of a possible six points. Providence began with a dominant 4-1 win over Albany Friday, a game that saw Sean Kuraly net the team’s first penalty shot goal since 2011. The eyes of the hockey world were upon the team Saturday, as rookie sensation Charlie McAvoy made his professional debut for the club in a 3-2 loss at Springfield. Providence finished out their weekend strong, dominating Hartford 4-1 in McAvoy’s first game in front of the home fans.

The P-Bruins sit in third place in both the Atlantic division and Eastern Conference with a record of 41-20-5-4 and 91 points. In a tight race, their magic number to clinch a playoff spot sits at seven as they sit firmly in the driver’s seat. Still, the team can finish anywhere from second to fifth place, with the latter meaning they would fail to get into the playoffs.

After missing six games due to injury, Jordan Szwarz netted goals in each of the team’s games this weekend including two Saturday in Springfield. He now leads the P-Bruins in goals (21), assists (31), points (52) and penalty minutes (72), something no player has ever done in franchise history. He wasn’t the only Bruin with four points on the weekend, as Alex Grant and Austin Czarnik each had a goal and three assists. Grant now ranks second among defensemen with 17 goals and fifth in scoring with 46 points. Szwarz was not only Bruin to score in each weekend game either, as Danton Heinen registered assists in each of the three games. Zane McIntyre continued his stellar season with two more wins in net. He allowed one goal in each of his starts, saving 59 of 61 shots. He continues to lead the AHL with a 1.91 GAA and a 93.4 save percentage. He was recalled on an emergency basis March 28, but was returned later that night.

The big transaction of the week was obviously McAvoy, as the 14th overall pick in the 2016 NHL draft signed a 3-year entry level deal with Boston and reported to Providence on an ATO March 29. Brown University standout Mark Naclerio was sent down to Atlanta March 28 and Yale product Mike Doherty was released to make room on the roster for McAvoy, who registered two assists in two games this weekend. Due to injuries at the NHL level, Kuraly was recalled on an emergency basis April 1 and scored his first career point (an assist) in Boston’s 3-2 win over Chicago.

This weekend’s set of games will not be easy, as the P-Bruins face off with teams that have a lot to play for. The begin a home-and-home series with Bridgeport at 7:05pm Friday at the Dunk as the two division rivals will fight it out for playoff positioning. After returning from Bridgeport Saturday night, the team welcomes Wilkes-Barre Scranton to the Dunk at 3:05pm for a faceoff against the first place Penguins.

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The Providence Bruins are the American Hockey League affiliate of the NHL’s Boston Bruins, playing their home games at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center in Providence, RI. Spanning more than 20 years, the Boston/Providence affiliation is one of the longest and most successful player development partnerships in professional hockey history.

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