* denotes starters
Wood-Mayo (OHL debut)-Hodgson
Scratches: G Oscar Dansk (World Juniors – Sweden), D Adam Pelech (WJC – Canada), RW Andre Burakovsky (WJC – Sweden), C Connor McDavid (WJC – Canada), C Dylan Strome (World Under-17s), C Quentin Maksimovich (healthy)
Scratches: RW Scott Teskey, Paxton Leroux, Radek Faksa (World Juniors – Czech Republic)
Referees: Pat Myers, Brent Coloumbe; Linesmen: Mike Harrington, Ray King
Kitchener Rangers (13-21-0-1) at Erie Otters (29-7-1-0)
When: Today, 6 p.m.
Where: Erie Insurance Arena
On the air: WFNN-AM/1330, www.ottershockey.com (live stream)
Up next: vs. Owen Sound (Friday and Saturday, 7 p.m.)
What to watch: The Otters look to end their first losing streak of the season – three games – against a Rangers club that gave them trouble in their last two meetings. The Otters allowed 12 goals – nearly four goals above their season average of 2.5 per outing – in splitting those two games – a 9-6 home win Nov. 19 and a 6-2 loss in Kitchener this past Saturday. … The Otters lead the Western Conference by four points over third-place Guelph. West Division-leading Sault Ste. Marie is five points back in second. … The Otters are a franchise-record 18-0-0-0 at home, which stands two wins shy of equaling the second-longest home streak in OHL history. The St. Catharines Fincups won 20 in a row from Sept. 24, 1976 to Jan. 18, 1977. The record is 33 straight by the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds in the 1984-85 season. … LW Dane Fox has no points in the last three games. He still leads the league with 41 goals and trails only linemate Connor Brown 71-67 in the race for the scoring title. … G Devin Williams has followed a career-best, 13-game winning streak with three straight losses. … D Jesse Saban and C Trent Fox have joined fellow 2013 draft pick Cole Mayo, a defenseman, in Erie. But there are no current plans for them to dress for games. … The Rangers are last in the West, but they are only three points behind eighth-place Plymouth in the three-team battle for the conference’s final playoff spot. … The Rangers are without leading scorer Radek Faksa (14 goals., 25 points), who’s playing for Czech Republic at the IIHF World Junior Championship. … They have three promising young players in RWs Nick Magyar (10-15-25), Justin Bailey (14-11-25) and Darby Llewellyn (19-5-24).
- Victor Fernandes