Oklahoma City Barons at Abbotsford Heat - Saturday, November 10th, 2012
Crowd Swells for Barons and Heat
The Abbotsford Entertainment and Sports Centre is sold-out again tonight, the third sellout crowd for the Heat this season. The 7,046 person capacity crowds have historically been reserved for when the Vancouver Canucks’ affiliate is in town, but the AHL version of the “Battle of Alberta” in the Valley has proven to be a big draw, with some fans even traveling from Alberta via bus and packing the local hotels to watch future NHL stars in action. Following this weekend set, the Heat’s average attendance will be 5,108.
The Heat announced their captain and alternate captains last Friday following a vote by the players and coaching staff.
Captain: Quintin Laing, 33-years-old (Harris, Saskatchewan)
- Quintin Laing is back as captain again this year, after captaining the Heat in both 2010-11 and 2011-12. Laing has played 634 AHL games, as well as 79 games in the NHL over four seasons with the Chicago Blackhawksand Washington Capitals.
Alternate Captain: Joe Piskula, 28-years-old (Antigo, Wisconsin)
- After suiting up for both the 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons with the Heat, Piskula will be an alternate captain for the second straight year. He has played a total of ten games in the NHL with the Los Angeles Kings and Calgary Flames.
Alternate Captain: Steve McCarthy, 31-years-old (Trail, British Columbia)
- Also wearing an “A” in 2012-13 is veteran blue-liner Steve McCarthy, who played for Calgary Flames head-coach Bob Hartley in Zurich last season. McCarthy has played 302 NHL games in his career, dressing for the Chicago Blackhawks, Vancouver Canucks, and Atlanta Thrashers.
The Heat squad of 2012-13 is the of the four-year history of the franchise. With the average age of team members 24.68, the Heat are second only to the Hershey Bears with an average age of 25.41.
Spectacular Penalty Kill Continues
The Heat continued their exceptional short-handed play on Friday night, killing all five Barons’ opportunities with the man-advantage. Abbotsford remains first in the league on the penalty kill with a 44-for-45 record. Heat Assistant Coach and “P.K.-Czar” Cail MacLean was asked earlier in the week about the team’s exceptional short-handed play thus far: “Obviously, goaltending is a big factor with any penalty-kill, when you have success, you have to look at a) the group effort, and a close second is what the goaltenders do out there, because they are always your best penalty killers.” Danny Taylor definitely proved MacLean’s point last night, stopping all 23 shots to earn his first shutout of the season.
The Heat remain at home early next week, facing the Lake Erie Monsters on Tuesday, November 13th and Wednesday, November 14th at the AESC. The Monsters hosted the Heat squad earlier this season for a two game series, with the Heat winning the first game, and losing the second in a shootout. The Heat depart Thursday morning on a five game road-trip, playing Rochester, Toronto, Texas, San Antonio, and Houston, before returning to the AESC to host the Hamilton Bulldogs on November 30th.
Did you know…
The Heat have players from across North America and Europe: one from Saskatchewan, two from Manitoba, two from Europe, five from Alberta, five from British Columbia, six from Ontario, and seven from the United States…
During his pro debut for the Reading Royals in 2004-05, Barry Brust played with Heat Assistant Coach Cail MacLean, who recorded 42 points in 59 games…
Cail MacLean played under Heat Head Coach Troy G. Ward in 2000-01 for the Trenton Titans of the ECHL, where they lost in the Kelly Cup finals…