AHL Conference Finals: Game 3 Previews; both series at 1-1

 

AHL photo courtesy of WikiMediaCommons.

The Eastern Conference and Western Conference Finals have both switched to the lower seed’s venue. Here are the matchups for Game 3:

Eastern Conference Finals: (4) St. John’s IceCaps at (6) Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins

In Game 1, the Penguins were up 3-1 after 2 periods, out-shooting the IceCaps 26-19 in that span. The IceCaps out-shot the Penguins 14-6 but only managed to score 1 in the third, losing 3-2. Having won Game 1, the Penguins shift home-ice advantage to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.

Game 2 showed a desperate St. John’s team, scoring the first 2 goals of the game and out-shooting Wilkes-Barre/Scranton 22-21 after 2 periods. Heading into the third period, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton was down 2-0. The Penguins out-shot St. John’s 14-7 in the third period, but only scored 1 goal, evening the series at 1 game apiece. The Penguins can close the series at home by winning 3 straight.
Game 3 – Wednesday, May 28 – St. John’s at W-B/Scranton, 7:05 PM EST

Western Conference Finals: (1) Texas Stars at (3) Toronto Marlies

The hottest team remaining in the postseason is the Toronto Marlies, who won 7 straight games heading into the Western Conference Finals. The winner of this series will have home-ice advantage against the Eastern Conference winner.

Game 1 included a shot differential of 50-19, but the outcome was different than expected. After 2 periods, Toronto was up 3-0 while being out-shot 29-15 and the trend continued in the third period. The Stars out-shot the Marlies 21-4 but were outscored 2-1, losing 5-1. With the 5-1 victory, the Marlies remained unbeaten in the postseason (8-0) and shifted home-ice to Toronto.

Understanding that giving Toronto a 2-0 lead cannot happen, the Stars played much stronger in Game 2. Texas out-shot Toronto 52-30 and evened the series at 1 with a 6-3 victory. Toronto can close the series at home by winning 3 straight.
Game 3 – Wednesday, May 28 – Texas at Toronto, 7:00 PM EST

 

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