Maine Hockey Journal

Game Day Blog: Atlantic Division Semifinal Game 1 – Portland @ Providence

Providence, RI — Portland and Providence kick off their Atlantic Division semifinal tonight at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center in Rhode Island’s capital… It marks the rivals’ fourth playoff clash in the last six years; the Pirates ousted the Bruins in 2004 (division qualifying series), 2006 (division semifinals) and 2008 (division finals)…

This series features four of the AHL’s top seven rookie scorers in the regular season in the Pirates’ Tim Kennedy (18-49-67) and AHL Rookie of the Year Nathan Gerbe (30-26-56) and the Bruins’ Brad Marchand (18-41-59) and Mikko Lehtonen (28-25-53)… Pirates forward Mathieu Darche racked up a team-high nine goals and 13 points in 10 regular-season meetings with Providence; Darche shows 25 points (10-15-25) in 37 career AHL playoff games and won the Calder Cup with Milwaukee in 2004… Johnny Boychuk led all league defensemen in goals (20), assists (45 – tied) and points (65) for the Bruins…

Providence was an impressive 27-12-0-1 at home during the regular year…

Portland has lost four consecutive Game 1’s, including all three last postseason.

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