Shootout
By Victor Fernandes Erie Times-News staff blogger
Staff writer Victor Fernandes has ice in his veins. Hockey – he plays it, coaches it and provides the region's best coverage of it.   Read more about this blog.
 Phone: 814-870-1716
Posts tagged ‘Andre Burakovsky’
Posted: April 7th, 2014

Western Conference semifinals, Game 4 (best-of-7 series)
No. 3 Erie Otters vs. No. 2 Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds

When: Today, 7 p.m.
Where: Erie Insurance Arena
On the air: WJET-AM/1400, www.ottershockey.com (live stream)
Players to watch

Connor McDavid

Erie – LW Dane Fox (7 goals, 9 assists, 16 points), C Connor McDavid (4-9-13), RW Connor Brown (3-9-12), C Brendan Gaunce (5-7-12), LW Andre Burakovsky (7-1-8), G Devin Williams (7-0-1 record, 1.90 goals-against average, .934 save percentage, 2 shutouts); Sault Ste. Marie – G Matt Murray (4-3-1, 2.63, .914, 1

Matt Murray

shutout), D Darnell Nurse (2-5-7, minus-1 rating), C Tyler Gaudet (2-6-8), LW Michael Bunting (5-1-6), C Jared McCann (2-4-6), LW Sergey Tolchinsky (1-3-4)
Fast facts: The Otters hold a 3-0 series lead for the third time in franchise history. They won the first three games against Windsor and Barrie in the Western finals and league finals, respectively, in 2002. They lost Game 4 on the road both times before winning Game 5 to close out each series. … Williams is one of only five goaltenders in Otters’ history with a playoff shutout. He’s the only one with two. … The Greyhounds have been shut out four times all season. The Otters won three of those games. … Otters F Jake Evans recorded his first OHL playoff point with an assist in the Game 3 win.
Outlook: The Otters have plenty of motivation to close this series tonight – reach the conference finals for the first time since 2002, and avoid a second 1,200-mile round trip to Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.

Series schedule
No. 3 Erie vs. No. 2 Sault Ste. Marie
Otters lead series 3-0

Game 1 – Erie 3, Sault Ste. Marie 1
Game 2 – Erie 4, Sault Ste. Marie 0
Game 3 – Erie 2, Sault Ste. Marie 0
Game 4 – Today at Erie, 7 p.m.
Game 5 – Thursday at Sault Ste. Marie, 7:07 p.m.*
Game 6 – Saturday at Erie, 7 p.m.*
Game 7 – Monday at Sault Ste. Marie, 7:07 p.m.*
* If necessary

- Victor Fernandes

Posted: April 7th, 2014

NHL Central Scouting unveils its final rankings for the 2014 Entry Draft on Tuesday. Erie Otters G Devin Williams may or may not make the list. But he likely impressed a group of scouts that numbered at least 15 with his 29-save effort and second straight shutout in a 2-0 Game 3 win against Sault Ste. Marie.
His teammates also deserve some credit for their strong defensive performance in front of him.
Here’s what D Troy Donnay and LW Andre Burakovsky had to say after the game.
Also, check out head coach Kris Knoblauch‘s post-game news conference…

Posted: April 7th, 2014

Here are the lineups for tonight’s Game 3 between the Erie Otters and Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds (starters to follow)…

ERIE OTTERS
FORWARDS
Fox-McDavid-Brown
Burakovsky-Gaunce-Wigle*
Curtis-Strome-Evans
Wood-Murphy-Betz

DEFENSE
Genovese-Pelech
MacDermid-Abraham*
Dermott-Donnay

GOALTENDERS
Williams*
Dansk

SCRATCHES: D Justin Felker (healthy), C Kyle Pettit (gash across left calf), D Darren Raddysh (healthy), C Quentin Maksimovich (healthy)

SAULT STE. MARIE GREYHOUNDS
FORWARDS
Bunting-Miller-Speers
Mallette-Corson-Goetz
Watling-Gaudet-Dupuy*
Tolchinsky-McCann-Fritsch

DEFENSE
Nurse-Ganly*
Jenkins-Gudbranson
Hore-White

GOALTENDERS
Matt Murray*
Brandon Halverson

SCRATCHES: RW Jorgen Karterud, RW Bryan Moore, D David Ecclesd, C Charley Gaaskamp

Check out the latest edition of Knoblauch Korner here

Western Conference semifinals, Game 3 (best-of-7 series)
No. 3 Erie Otters vs. No. 2 Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds

When: Today, 7 p.m.
Where: Erie Insurance Arena
On the air: WJET-AM/1400, www.ottershockey.com (live stream)
Players to watch

Connor McDavid

Erie – LW Dane Fox (7 goals, 9 assists, 16 points), C Connor McDavid (4-8-12), RW Connor Brown (3-9-12), C Brendan Gaunce (5-6-11), LW Andre Burakovsky (6-1-7), G Devin Williams (6-0-1 record, 2.20 goals-against average, .923 save percentage, 1 shutout); Sault Ste. Marie – G Matt Murray (4-2-1, 2.71, .910, 1

Matt Murray

shutout), D Darnell Nurse (2-5-7), C Tyler Gaudet (2-6-8), LW Michael Bunting (5-1-6), C Jared McCann (2-4-6), LW Sergey Tolchinsky (1-3-4)
Fast facts: The Otters are 4-2 in their playoff history when holding a 2-0 series lead. Sault Ste. Marie handed the Otters one of those losses – in the 2000 Western semifinals. … The No. 1 line of Brown, Fox and McDavid combined for three goals and eight assists in Game 2 after totaling one point in Game 1. … Burakovsky has no points in the past three games after contributing six goals and seven points in the first four games against Saginaw in the first round. … Gaunce has points in five straight games and six of seven in the playoffs. … Williams recorded the Otters’ first playoff shutout since 2009 and fifth in franchise history in Game 2. … The Otters are 2-for-10 on the power play and 11-for-11 on the penalty kill in the series. … Nurse, an Edmonton Oilers prospect, has no points and a minus-4 rating in the series. … McCann and D Kyle Jenkins are the only Greyhounds with points in the series.
Outlook: The Otters have never swept a playoff series in their history. They can move one step closer to doing that with a win at home, where they have a 32-3-1 record this season.

- Victor Fernandes

Posted: April 2nd, 2014

Erie Otters RW Andre Burakovsky and C Dylan Strome were named the OHL’s player and rookie of the month for March.
Burakovsky, who joins teammates Connor Brown, Dane Fox and Connor McDavid in winning this honor this season, had 14 goals (a league high), 24 points and a plus-22 rating (also a league high) in 12 games. That stretch included a seven-game point streak and a five-point outing that tied a career high in an 8-4 win over Sarnia in the regular-season finale March 15.
Strome led all rookies with 15 points (2 goals, 13 assists), and added a plus-17 rating, in 12 games. He had a career-best three points in an 11-2 win over Plymouth on March 5.

Posted: April 1st, 2014

Western Conference semifinals (best-of-7 series)

No. 3 Erie Otters vs. No. 2 Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds
Season records: Erie 52-14-2-0, Sault Ste. Marie 44-17-2-5
Season series: Tied 1-1
First-round recap: Erie def. No. 6 Saginaw, 4 games to 1; Sault Ste. Marie def. No. 7 Owen Sound, 4-1
Players to watch: Erie – LW Dane Fox (6 goals, 6 assists, 12 points), C Brendan Gaunce (4-4-8), RW Connor Brown (2-6-8), C Connor McDavid (2-6-8), LW Andre Burakovsky (6-1-7), G Devin Williams (4-0-1 record, 2.97 goals-against average, .893 save percentage); Sault Ste. Marie – G Matt Murray (4-0-1, 2.38, .918, 1

Matt Murray

shutout) D Darnell Nurse (2-5-7, plus-4), C Tyler Gaudet (2-6-8), LW Michael Bunting (5-1-6), C Jared McCann (2-3-5), LW Sergey Tolchinsky (1-3-4)
Fast facts: Fox leads the league in playoff scoring, and is tied with Burakovsky for the lead in goals. … Murray earned the league’s player of the week award for totaling a 3-0-0 record, 1.33 goals-against average, .957 save percentage and one shutout in the final three games against Owen Sound. … The Otters won three of four one-goal games, including two of three in overtime, against Saginaw. … The Greyhounds won four straight games after losing the series opener to the Attack. … D Kurtis MacDermid (flu) will play tonight. … C Kyle Pettit (gash across left calf) is listed as day-to-day. … McDavid (28-71-99) and Tolchinsky (31-60-91) ranked among the league’s top 10 scorers in the regular season after finishing among the top three rookie scorers a season ago. … WJET-AM/1400 will broadcast Games 2 through 4 and, if necessary, Games 5 through 7.
Outlook: The Greyhounds have home-ice advantage, but the Otters are a better team when they’re playing at their best – especially in net.
Prediction: Otters in 6 games

Series schedule
No. 3 Erie vs. No. 2 Sault Ste. Marie

Game 1 – Today at Sault Ste. Marie, 7:07 p.m.
Game 2 – Friday at Sault Ste. Marie, 7:07 p.m.
Game 3 – Monday at Erie, 7 p.m.
Game 4 – Tuesday at Erie, 7 p.m.
Game 5 – April 10 at Sault Ste. Marie, 7:07 p.m.*
Game 6 – April 12 at Erie, 7 p.m.*
Game 7 – April 14 at Sault Ste. Marie, 7:07 p.m.*
* If necessary

______________________________________________________________________________

No. 1 Guelph Storm vs. No. 4 London Knights
When: Friday, 7:30 p.m.
Where: Sleeman Centre – Guelph, Ontario
Season series: Tied 3-3
First-round recap: Guelph def. No. 8 Plymouth, 4 games to 1; London def. No. 5 Windsor, 4-0
Players to watch

Zack Mitchell

Guelph – RW Zack Mitchell (2 goals, 6 assists, 8 points), G Justin Nichols (4-1-0 record, 1.81 goals-against average, .941 save percentage, 1 shutout), LW Jason Dickinson (3-4-7), LW Kerby Rychel (1-6-7), D Zac Leslie (0-6-6, +5 rating), D Nick Ebert (4-1-5, +6)
London - C Chris Tierney (3-6-9), C Bo Horvat (4-4-8), C Ryan Rupert (1-7-8), LW Max Domi (2-4-6), D Nikita Zadorov (3-2-5, +4), G Jake Patterson (1-0-0, 3.00, .919)

Jake Patterson


Fast facts: Knights No. 1 G Anthony Stolarz (3-0-0, 2.00, .933) still has to serve the final 7 games of an 8-game suspension for striking Windsor RW Josh Ho-Sang in the back of the head with a stick in Game 3 of their first-round series. … Knights D Zach Bell will miss the rest of the season with a broken leg suffered in Game 4 against the Spitfires. … Storm C Robby Fabbri (45-42-87 in the regular season) missed the final four games of the first-round series reportedly because of a hit to the head from Plymouth D Yannick Rathgeb, who received a 10-game suspension. … LW Brock McGinn (43-42-85 in the regular season) still has to serve the final six games of an eight-game suspension for a hit to the head of Whalers RW Connor Sills in Game 3.
Outlook: Both teams head into the series short-handed, so I’ll stick with my original prediction
Prediction: Knights in 7 games

Series schedule
Game 1 – Friday at Guelph, 7:30 p.m.
Game 2 – Sunday at Guelph, 7 p.m.
Game 3 – Tuesday at London, 7 p.m.
Game 4 – April 10 at London, 7 p.m.
Game 5 – April 11 at Guelph, 7:30 p.m.*
Game 6 – April 13 at London, 2 p.m.*
Game 7 – April 15 at Guelph, 7 p.m.*
* If necessary

Posted: March 27th, 2014

The Erie Otters could learn their opponent in the Western Conference semifinals tonight. If Sault Ste. Marie beats Owen Sound at home in Game 5, the third-seeded Otters will face the No. 2 Greyhounds, with the Soo having home-ice advantage. The Otters would face fourth-seeded London only if Owen rallies to beat the Soo in their series. The Knights completed a sweep of Windsor with a 4-3 win Thursday.
* Devin Williams has proven he deserves to be the No. 1 goaltender until he cools off. Saginaw could have taken the lead on several occasions in regulation, and he turned the Spirit away – including a dive across the crease that kept Cody Payne from scoring into an open net late in the third period.
* The Otters and Spirit went to OT three times in their five-game series, which tied Erie’s franchise record for OT games in a series. In the 2005 playoffs, the Otters and Kitchener had three OT games in a six-game series won by the Rangers.
* RW Andre Burakovsky had a 10-game, goal-scoring streak dating back to the end of the regular season snapped Thursday.
* LW Dane Fox leads all scorers in the postseason with 12 points (6 goals, 6 assists). He’s tied with Burakovsky for the lead in goals. Fs Brendan Gaunce (4 goals, 4 assists), Connor Brown (2 goals, 6 assists) and Connor McDavid (2 goals, 6 assists) had eight points apiece.

Check out post-game interviews with head coach Kris Knoblauch, OT hero Michael Curtis and winning G Devin Williams.

Western Conference
No. 1 Guelph vs. No. 8 Plymouth

Game 1 – Guelph 5, Plymouth 2
Game 2 – Guelph 3, Plymouth 0
Game 3 – Plymouth 2, Guelph 1
Game 4 – Guelph 7, Plymouth 2
Game 5 – Today at Guelph, 7:30 p.m.
Game 6 – Sunday at Plymouth, 4 p.m.*
Game 7 – Tuesday at Guelph, 7 p.m.*
Guelph leads series 3-1

No. 2 Sault Ste. Marie vs. No. 7 Owen Sound
Game 1 – Owen Sound 5, Sault Ste. Marie 4, OT
Game 2 – Sault Ste. Marie 7, Owen Sound 3
Game 3 – Sault Ste. Marie 5, Owen Sound 3
Game 4 – Sault Ste. Marie 2, Owen Sound 0
Game 5 – Today at Sault Ste. Marie, 7:07 p.m.
Game 6 – Sunday at Owen Sound, 2 p.m.*
Game 7 – Tuesday at Sault Ste. Marie, 7:07 p.m.*
Sault Ste. Marie leads 3-1

No. 3 Erie vs. No. 6 Saginaw
Game 1 – Erie 4, Saginaw 3
Game 2 – Erie 4, Saginaw 3, OT
Game 3 – Saginaw 7, Erie 6, OT
Game 4 – Erie 7, Saginaw 3
Game 5 – Erie 3, Saginaw 2, OT
Erie wins series 4-1

No. 4 London vs. No. 5 Windsor
Game 1 – London 6, Windsor 1
Game 2 – London 6, Windsor 3
Game 3 – London 10, Windsor 2
Game 4 – London 4, Windsor 3
London wins series 4-0

Eastern Conference
No. 1 Oshawa vs. No. 8 Mississauga

Game 1 – Oshawa 6, Mississauga 0
Game 2 – Oshawa 3, Mississauga 2, OT
Game 3 – Oshawa 6, Mississauga 5, 2OT
Game 4 – Oshawa 4, Mississauga 3, OT
Oshawa wins series 4-0

No. 2 North Bay vs. No. 7 Niagara
Game 1 – North Bay 4, Niagara 0
Game 2 – Niagara 3, North Bay 2
Game 3 – Niagara 2, North Bay 0
Game 4 – Niagara 5, North Bay 3
Game 5 – Today at North Bay, 7:30 p.m.
Game 6 – Sunday at Niagara, 2 p.m.*
Game 7 – Tuesday at North Bay, 7 p.m.*
Niagara leads series 3-1

No. 3 Kingston vs. No. 6 Peterborough
Game 1 – Kingston 4, Peterborough 1
Game 2 – Kingston 5, Peterborough 3, OT
Game 3 – Kingston 4, Peterborough 2
Game 4 – Peterborough 3, Kingston 1
Game 5 – Today at Kingston, 7 p.m.
Game 6 – Sunday at Peterborough, 7:05 p.m.*
Game 7 – Tuesday at Kingston, 7 p.m.*
Kingston leads series 3-1

No. 4 Barrie vs. No. 5 Sudbury
Game 1 – Barrie 3, Sudbury 2
Game 2 – Barrie 4, Sudbury 3, OT
Game 3 – Barrie 6, Sudbury 4
Game 4 – Sudbury 2, Barrie 1
Game 5 – Today at Barrie, 7:30 p.m.
Game 6 – Sunday at Sudbury, 7 p.m.*
Game 7 – Tuesday at Barrie, 7:30 p.m.*
Barrie leads series 3-1

* If necessary

Posted: March 27th, 2014

SAGINAW, Mich. – Here are a few thoughts on the Erie Otters’ pivotal Game 4 win over Saginaw on Wednesday night at Dow Event Center…

* Kudos to the team’s head athletic trainers, including the Otters’ Scott McLay, and the EMTs on hand for getting Kyle Pettit‘s medical situation – the 2nd-year forward’s left calf was gashed open by a skate blade – under control so quickly. Given what happened, it could have much worse. Instead, Pettit was able to celebrate the win with his team in the dressing room after the game.
* I was told the Otters wear cut-resistant Kevlar socks. So it will be interesting to find out if the sock helped keep the cut on Pettit’s leg from being worse…
* Head coach Kris Knoblauch said the gash on Pettit’s leg wasn’t as bad as the injury London G Anthony Stolarz suffered earlier this season that sidelined him for six weeks.
But Pettit will be missed if he has to sit out any length of time. The Otters were a different team – and not always in a good way – while Pettit was out with an upper-body injury, and F Jake Evans was out with with a sprained knee, at the end of the regular season. Pettit is solid at both ends of the ice, especially on the penalty kill and and as the third option behind C Brendan Gaunce and LW Dane Fox on faceoffs.

Andre Burakovsky

* Special teams have been a big part of the Otters-Spirit series. The Otters took control of the series Wednesday night with a pair of power-play goals and a 6-for-7 showing on the penalty kill. They overcame a stretch of six straight short-handed situations by killing off the final five chances.
* Andre Burakovsky continued his hot start to the playoffs with his sixth goal of the series. He also continued building a case for him to earn a spot in the NHL with the Washington Capitals next season, or at least in the AHL.

Posted: March 26th, 2014

Here are the lineups for tonight’s Game 4 between the Erie Otters and Saginaw Spirit…

ERIE OTTERS
FORWARDS
Fox-McDavid-Brown*
Evans-Gaunce-Wigle
Curtis-Strome-Burakovsky
Maksimovich (OHL playoff debut)-Pettit-Betz

DEFENSE
Pelech-Raddysh (OHL playoff debut)*
MacDermid/Genovese-Abraham
Dermott-Donnay

GOALTENDERS
Williams*
Dansk

SCRATCHES: D Justin Felker, RW Patrick Murphy, D Darren Raddysh

SAGINAW SPIRIT
FORWARDS

Locke/Alexeev-Kontos-Cairns (former Otter)
Moutrey-Kea-Sadowy*
Lodge-Stephens-Payne
Clarke-Bennett-Addison

DEFENSE
Ringuette-Sefton*
Callaghan-Graham
Prophet-DeSousa

GOALTENDERS
Paterson*
Serebryakov

SCRATCHES:D Ryan Orban, D Michael Holmes

OHL playoffs at a glance
Western Conference quarterfinals, Game 4 (best-of-7 series)
No. 3 Erie Otters vs. No. 6 Saginaw Spirit

When: Today, 7:11 p.m.
Where: Dow Event Center – Saginaw, Mich.
On the air: WFNN-AM/1330, www.ottershockey.com (live stream)
Series record: Erie leads 2-1
Players to watch
Erie – LW Dane Fox (3 goals, 3 assist, 6 points), LW Andre Burakovsky (5-0-5), C Brendan Gaunce (2-3-5), RW Connor Brown (1-3-4), C Connor McDavid (0-3-4), G Devin Williams (2-0-1 record, 3.44 goals-against average, .879 save percentage); Saginaw – G Jake Paterson (1-1-1, 4.53, .901), C Kristoff Kontos (1-6-7), C Eric Locke (2-3-5), C Jimmy Lodge (2-2-4), LW Luke Cairns (2-1-3, former Otter), RW Cody Payne (2-1-3)
Fast facts: The Otters had a 10-game winning streak dating back to the final eight games of the regular season snapped in the Game 3 loss on Monday. … The seven goals in Game 3 were the second-most allowed by the Otters this season (8 vs. Windsor on Sept. 28). … The Otters are 3-9 when allowing five goals or more this season. … The Otters, who led the league with 170 goals against in the regular season, have allowed 13 goals in the first three games of this series. … Kontos is tied for the league lead with seven points in the playoffs, one ahead of Fox. … Burakovsky leads the league with five goals. … The Otters have outshot Saginaw 142-91 in the series. … Erie has played two overtime games in the series, one shy of tying the franchise record of three set in 2005 and matched in 2011. … The Otters are 10-9 all-time in overtime games in their playoff history.
Outlook: Payne’s overtime winner Monday kept the Otters from taking control of the series. Now the Spirit can do the same with the next two games at home.

Series schedule
No. 3 Erie vs. No. 6 Saginaw
Otters lead series 2-1

Game 1 – Erie 4, Saginaw 3
Game 2 – Erie 4, Saginaw 3 (OT)
Game 3 – Saginaw 7, Erie 6 (OT)
Game 4 – Today at Saginaw, 7:11 p.m.
Game 5 – Thursday at Saginaw, 7:11 p.m.
Game 6 – Sunday at Erie, 6 p.m.*
Game 7 – Monday at Erie, 7 p.m.*

Posted: March 24th, 2014

SAGINAW, Mich. – Tonight’s wild back-and-forth between the Erie Otters and Saginaw Spirit has left the Otters with a 2-1 series lead in this Western Conference quarterfinal series heading into Game 4 on Wednesday at Dow Event Center.
Head coach Kris Knoblauch wasn’t happy with his team’s subpar defense, while Oscar Dansk wasn’t happy with his performance in his OHL playoff debut – five goals against on 25 shots.
Dansk doesn’t warrant all of the blame. The Otters had breakdown after breakdown against the Spirit, which got more production from the No. 1 line of Kristoff Kontos (2 assists), Eric Locke (goal) and former Otter Luke Cairns (assist) and also had big nights from Jimmy Lodge (2 goals, assist), Dylan Sadowy (2 goals) and OT hero Cody Payne.
The Otters were in rhythm offensively, led Brendan Gaunce (2 goals, assist) and Andre Burakovsky, who scored two more goals to give him five in three games.
Dylan Strome had another solid game with two assists.
But their offensive play wasn’t good enough to overcome the Otters’ play at the other end of the ice. Now they to get back to work at practice Tuesday.
They have plenty work on…

- Victor Fernandes

Posted: March 22nd, 2014

Andre Burakovsky had 41 goals, 46 assists and 87 points in his first OHL season. That was more than Tim Connolly (30 goals in 1997-98) and current teammate Connor McDavid (41 assists and 66 points in 2012-13).
But since the OHL doesn’t recognize Burakovsky as a rookie because he’s 18 years old (a year older than the maximum age allowed for rookie status), club officials have decided to do the same. Burakovsky would have led all rookies in all three categories if not for that rule.

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