Cyclones Game Preview - Cincinnati at Toledo
October 19, 2012 | View Comments
TOLEDO WALLEYE (1-0-0-0)
Click here for tonight's game note packet
DATE: Friday, October 19, 2012
TIME: 7:05pm ET
SITE: Huntington Center - Toledo, OH
WEBCAST: CyclonesHockey.com (America One)
Cincinnati Cyclones: Florida Panthers, Nashville Predators
Toledo Walleye: Detroit Red Wings, Chicago Blackhawks
NEXT HOME GAME
Saturday, October 20 vs. Trenton - 7:30pm
KIDS EAT FREE NIGHT
TONIGHT'S MATCHUP: Cincinnati opens up North Division play tonight as they visit the Toledo Walleye for the first of eight regular season meetings. Over the years, the Cyclones and their I-75 rivals have engaged in a evenly-matched series; since the 2006-07 campaign, Cincinnati has compiled a 26-25-2-1 record against Toledo. Last year, the Clones went 7-5-1 against the “Fish.”
SCOUTING THE WALLEYE: Nick Vitucci’s club looks to rebound from their worst season since returning to ECHL play in 2009-10. Last year, the Walleye finished with a 28-38-2-4 record - which placed last in the North Division and 11th out of 12 Eastern Conference teams. Like the Cyclones, Toledo has only played in one game thus far - a 4-1 win over Kalamazoo last Saturday. Both of their top two point-getters from a year ago have returned; Joey Martin led the team in 2011-12 with 49 points (22 goals, 27 assists) in 63 games - 16 of them coming against Cincinnati. Kyle Rogers, meanwhile, compiled 44 points (20 goals, 24 assists) in 72 games for the Walleye last season. Between the pipes, Toledo has a pair of rookie goaltenders. Petr Mrazek, a 5th Round Draft Choice by the Detroit Red Wings, is coming off of a three-year career in the OHL where he posted a career goals-against average of 2.87. He is joined by fellow rookie Kent Simpson, who spent his entire amateur career in the WHL with the Everett Silvertips.
Plenty of Triple-A Talent: Thanks to the NHL lockout, Cincinnati fans are getting a chance to see some “next-level” talent at U.S. Bank Arena this season. 12 different Cyclones are currently Florida/Nashville prospects under AHL or NHL contracts. In addition, the Clones have added fifth-year pro Francois Bouchard to their roster - who sports more than 261 AHL games and 121 career points. He will be playing in his first ECHL game tonight after spending his entire playing career at the Triple-A level.
Killing Spree: Another strong point for the Cyclones in 2011-12 was their penalty kill. They finished sixth in the ECHL with an 84% kill rate - extinguishing 237 goals on 282 chances. On home ice, they were even more successful; at U.S. Bank Arena they held the third-best home penalty-kill rate in the league - clicking at 86.5%. Last Saturday, they killed off four out of five penalties against the Nailers.