Mar 5, 2013; Newark, NJ, USA; Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Ondrej Palat (74) skates with the puck against the New Jersey Devils during the third period at the Prudential Center. Tampa Bay Lightning defeat the New Jersey Devils 5-2. Mandatory Credit: Jim O

One Game Away: Syracuse Crunch Lead Series 3-1 Against the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins

It all comes down to this. The Syracuse Crunch, the American Hockey League affiliate of the Tampa Bay Lightning, has been powering their way through the Calder Cup Playoffs this year. Now, with the Crunch scheduled to take the ice at the War Memorial Arena tonight at 7:00 p.m. in Syracuse, they could indeed be just one game away from the Calder Cup Final.

They went undefeated in their first two series, first against the Portland Pirates, then the Springfield Falcons. The Crunch’s lone loss this playoff series came at the hands of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins with a finals score of 4-2 in Game 1 of the series on May 25th.

Should the Crunch defeat the Penguins tonight, they will advance to the Final Round of the Calder Cup Playoffs for the first time in franchise history. However, this is not a first for some of the members of the Crunch. As you will recall, many of these same guys, like Radko Gudas and Tyler Johnson, suited up for the Norfolk Admirals when they raised the Calder Cup last season.

There are currently 11 players on the Crunch with at least 2 or more goals in the Playoffs this season. However, there is no one even remotely close to the numbers posted by center Tyler Johnson. The 5’10” center from Spokane, WA has registered an amazing 9 goals and 7 assists for a total of 16 points to go along with his plus-12 rating.

The only player to top Johnson in overall points his Ondrej Palat. With his 4 goals and amazing 15 assists, he currently leads the Crunch, as well as the AHL, with 19 points and a plus-11 rating.

Can’t make it to Syracuse, but still want to stay up to date on the game? Never fear! We have you answer right here. You can listen to The Score 1260, the radio home of the Syracuse Crunch, on iHeartRadio. Pregame coverage will start at 6:45 p.m. EST.

Do you think the Crunch can lock up the series tonight and head on to the Calder Cup Finals, or will the Penguins put up a fight and extend the series to another game? Who do you think will be the MVP of the series for the Crunch? Sound off in the comments below and let us know what you think!


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Tags: 2013 Calder Cup Playoffs Syracuse Crunch Tampa Bay Lightning

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