Preview: Firebirds Resume Play Hosting Erie Friday
|Erie Otters at Flint Firebirds|
|Date | Time||Friday, Dec. 28th | 7:00 p.m.|
|Location||Flint, Mich. | Dort Federal Event Center (Directions)|
|Tickets||Ticketmaster.com | (810) 744-0580|
|Promotions||– 4 Pack Friday|
|TV||– OHL Action Pak: Rogers TV 454 & Cogeco TV 484 Live (Ontario)
– Broadcast Information
|Video Stream||OHL Live (Free: Friday Only)|
|Radio||WQUS 103.1 FM (Flint & Mid-Michigan) | Pregame Show: 6:30p|
|Radio (Mobile)||US 103 App: Android | iPhone/iPad|
|NHL Scouts Packet||Here|
|Social Media||@FlintFirebirds | Facebook | Instagram|
Flint, Mich. – The Firebirds resume action after the holiday break with back-to-back home games this weekend. First, the Erie Otters are in town for a Friday night tilt. Puck drop is set for 7 p.m. (ET) at the Dort Federal Credit Union Event Center in Flint.
Friday marks the fourth and final meeting between the two clubs this season. All-time, Flint is 4-6-2-3 vs. Erie and are 0-2-1-0 thus far in the season series. In the only meeting in Flint this campaign on Dec. 1, the Firebirds held the lead for all but the final 2:58 of the 60-minute regulation. The Otters eventually tied the contest on an empty-net extra attacker with just 11 seconds remaining, before scoring the overtime winner.
In their final game before the break, Flint earned a decisive 7-1 victory over the Frontenacs in Kingston. Five different players scored for the Firebirds and nine earned at least one point. Flint killed all four penalties while scoring three times on the man-advantage. The Firebirds also outshot the home team 31-28. Jack Wismer and Jake Durham each had three-point nights, logging two goals and one assist. Ethan Keppen, Riley McCourt and Ty Dellandrea each had two points in the contest. Goaltender Emanuel Vella made 27 saves on 28 shots, earning his second victory of the year.
On special teams, Flint is 16th in the 20-team OHL on the power-play at home, scoring on 17.5% of their opportunities. Erie ranks 12th on the road, converting at 17.9% while on the man-advantage. When shorthanded, the Firebirds are ranked 20th on home ice, killing penalties at a rate of 60.9%. The Otters are 20th on the road, killing penalties at a 61.4% clip.
All Friday home games are ‘4 Pack Friday’s,’ featuring (4) tickets, (4) hot dogs and (4) soft drinks, starting at just $60. Single game tickets for all Firebirds games are $12 Bronze, $16 Silver, $20 Gold and $26 VIP seating (Seating Chart). All seats are reserved / assigned seating. Fans can purchase tickets by calling (810) 744-0580, in-person at the Dort Federal Event Center Box Office or online at ticketmaster.com here.
Also Friday only, fans can watch the Firebirds’ home game live online for free by entering promo code FREEOHL18 at www.ohllive.com.
Players to Watch:
Flint Firebirds (4-29-2-0, 5th West Division):
The Firebirds have two players averaging better than a point-per-game this season, both of whom hail from Port Perry, Ontario. Jake Durham holds the edge in goals-scored and total points for Flint. Durham is now tied for the 10th-most goals in the OHL. Through 35 games played, Durham has 22 tallies and 14 helpers. He logged his fifth three-point night of the season in Kingston in the last game before the break. Dallas Stars’ first-round draft pick Ty Dellandrea recorded nine points in his last seven games for the Firebirds. On the season, he has 31 points (13G, 18A) in 29 games. Eric Uba and Ethan Keppen are tied for the third-most points on the squad. Uba has 12 goals and 11 assists in 34 games-played. Keppen has lit-the-lamp nine times and picked up 14 helpers in 35 contests.
First-year forward Jacob Winterton leads all newcomers in goals-scored and points, with seven tallies and 14 total points.
Fedor Gordeev (Toronto Maple Leafs) leads the defensive unit with three goals and 14 assists for 17 points in 30 games-played on the season. First-year defenseman Vladislav Kolyachonok has picked up 13 points in 23 games since joining the Firebirds after the season had started. On December 13, it was announced that Kolyachonok will play in the 2019 Sherwin-Williams CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game. Dellandrea played in the same game one year ago, before being selected 13th overall in the first round of the NHL Draft in June. Kolyachonok is draft eligible this year.
In net, Emanuel Vella holds a 5.06 goals-against average (GAA) and a .869 save percentage (SAV%) in 23 appearances. Vella has backstopped Flint to two wins and one overtime defeat this season. Luke Cavallin has compiled a 5.39 GAA and a .855 SAV% across 19 appearances. He also has two victories and one overtime point earned.
NHL: The Firebirds have three players with NHL ties consisting of Dennis Busby (Arizona Coyotes), Ty Dellandrea (Dallas Stars) and Fedor Gordeev (Toronto Maple Leafs). Additionally, five other Firebirds’ players attended NHL Camps this past off-season: Hunter Holmes (Philadelphia Flyers), Riley McCourt (Dallas Stars), Hakon Nilsen (New York Islanders), Connor Roberts (Pittsburgh Penguins) and Emanuel Vella (New York Islanders). In addition, netminder Luke Cavallin, forward Ethan Keppen and defenseman Vladislav Kolyachonok were named to November’s NHL Central Scouting’s North American ‘Players to Watch’ list for the upcoming NHL Draft.
Erie Otters (13-19-1-0, 5th MidWest Division):
Kyle Maksimovich leads the Otters in offensive production with 42 points (16G, 26A) in 33 contests this year. He carries a six-game point streak (3G, 6A) into the game Friday. Gera Poddubnyi ranks second on the squad with 18 goals and 15 assists through 33 games. His 18 tallies are most on the club. Chad Yetman holds the third spot with 24 points in 33 games played. Petr Cajka ranks fourth, and scored a hat trick in Flint on Dec. 1, including the late goal that forced overtime.
Jamie Drysdale was the fourth-overall pick in the 2018 OHL Draft and leads all Erie defenseman and first year players in points with two goals and 16 assists in 28 games played this season.
Between the pipes, Daniel Murphy has appeared in 28 games this season. He holds a 3.92 goals-against average (GAA) and a save percentage (SAV%) of .875 along with 12 victories. The last time Erie was in Flint, Murphy made 22 saves on 24 shots after relieving first-year netminder Noah Battaglia in the first period. Battaglia has made nine appearances this season, picking up one win and posting a 5.16 GAA and a SAV% of .818.
NHL: The Otters are currently playing without any active NHL ties on their squad. Forwards Petr Cajka and Emmett Sproule were listed on the November NHL Central Scouting’s North American ‘Players to Watch’ list for the upcoming NHL Draft.
Notable Otters’ alumni to play in the NHL are Connor McDavid, Connor Brown, Nikita Alexeev, Brad Boyes, Tim Connoly, Mike Rupp, Steve Montador, Carlo Coliaiacovo, Chris Campoli, Jason Ward and Dylan Strome.
Friday evening’s contest can be heard live on the radio throughout Flint & Mid-Michigan on US 103.1 FM, online at www.us103.com or by downloading the US 103 app here. Dominic Hennig will call the play-by-play action with pre-game coverage beginning 30 minutes prior to puck drop at 6:30 p.m.
The game will also be televised live across the province of Ontario on the OHL Action Pak on channel 454 for Rogers TV cable subscribers and channel 484 for Cogeco TV cable subscribers. OHL fans with cable television in Ontario can add the OHL Action Pak to their television plan to catch the Firebirds in action, home or away all season long. Along with Friday’s game, 65 of the Firebirds’ 68 games throughout the 2018-19 season are also scheduled to be televised live across the province of Ontario on the OHL Action Pak.
Friday only, fans can watch the Flint Firebirds home game live online for free by entering promo code FREEOHL18 at www.ohllive.com. All Flint Firebirds home and away games throughout the 2018-19 season can be watched anywhere in the world online on www.ohllive.com or on the OHL Live app. OHL Live is a league video streaming platform that delivers high quality live and on-demand coverage of all regular season and playoff games annually. The cost is $6.99 per game, $69.99 for Flint Firebirds away games only, $179.99 for all 68 home and away Firebirds games and $279.99 for all 1,360 OHL games throughout the 2018-19 season.
Blue Line Club Menu:
Presented by Great Lakes Sandwich Co & Cafe, Friday evening’s dinner menu for the Blue Line Club features cajun chicken pasta, barbecue chicken wings, steamed vegetables, garden salad and dinner rolls with bread. The menu is available to all sponsors and season ticket holders for $18 per person for an all-you-can-eat buffet, $12 for one trip. Dinner RSVP’s are encouraged by emailing Karla Turner at [email protected].
Next Home Game:
The Firebirds are back at it Saturday evening, hosting the Windsor Spitfires on ‘Superhero Night.’ The Firebirds accepted submissions from fans to recognize local superheroes prior to the contest.
All submissions will be printed off and posted on the concourse walls at the Dort Federal Credit Union Event Center for fans to read throughout the Firebirds’ game.
Additionally, the Firebirds have launched a superhero cape donation drive to benefit the Flint Firebirds Foundation, which was created to support education, healthy living and youth sports in Genesee County and surrounding areas. Fans are able to donate $1, $5 or $10 to the foundation and in return, they can write their name on a cape of their choice. Those capes will be on display throughout the Dort Federal Credit Union Event Center for all fans to recognize.
Also, bring out your ‘inner Thor’ as all fans will receive thunderstix courtesy of Dort Federal Credit Union. Popular superheroes will also be available for photos and to interact with on the Dort Federal Credit Union Event Center concourse throughout the game.
Photo Credit: Todd Boone / Flint Firebirds
For more information: