The Afternoon Shift – Oct. 29

Jiri Hudler's 2004 jersey: boo-tiful or frightful?/Photo by Mark Newman

The Griffins are enjoying another solid start to their season, continuing a longtime trend of successful Octobers. Grand Rapids has reached Halloween with a winning record in each of the previous seven seasons and in 10 of the last 11 years, with a 0.500 mark in 2002 serving as the only exception during that span. With a current record of 4-2-0-1, the Griffins can extend those streaks by earning at least one point during their two-game weekend home set that begins tonight against Oklahoma City.

The Griffins have been scary-good on special teams during the early going, tying for the AHL’s best power play (29.0%) and most shorthanded goals (3) while boasting the third-ranked penalty killers (92.7%). While it’s obviously much too early to project things over an entire season, it’s a very welcome and refreshing change so far from the 2009-10 campaign, when Grand Rapids ranked 17th on the power play (17.1%) and 26th in penalty killing (80.1%).

Kudos to the coaching staff, the PK unit and prolific point producers such as Cory Emmerton, Ilari Filppula, Derek Meech and Jan Mursak for making the Griffins’ special teams a force to reckon with.

Today’s Griffins links:

AHL/opponent links:

Alumni news and notes:

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