It’s a seven game series and putting a team away for four games is no simple feat.
Those sentiments were shared by veteran defenceman Mike Komisarek following practice on Thursday, one day ahead of game four. Although he wasn’t part of the Marlies squad that fell in the finals last season, the blue liner knows the feeling all too well. As part of the 2003 Hamilton team, Komisarek advanced to the cup finals. The Bulldogs took the series the distance, but in the end they were shutout in game seven and watched as Houston raised the cup.
Komisarek also believes the Marlies team still has their best hockey ahead of them.
Friday marks game four between the Marlies and Griffins, in a series that marks the first for the once division rivals since meeting in the first round of Toronto’s first even run in 2006. It was a series in which the Marlies only managed a win in game two. A fate their trying to avoid repeating now seven years later.
Here are six things to chew over ahead of puck drop:
- Putting a stamp on his return to the lineup, Ryan Hamilton scored his first of the playoffs in game three
- Greg Scott continues to lead the Marlies with seven goals and nine points through six games
- There are only three players on the Marlies roster with more than a single goal (Scott, Greg McKegg and Will Acton)
- As has been the custom in recent years, the Marlies penalty kill is presently leading the post-season operating at a 90.6% efficiency, a healthy match for the Grand Rapids bottom-third powerplay (16.2%)
- Toronto is 3-0 when scoring first in the 2013 post-season, but is yet to get the initial strike against Grand Rapids
- Tune into all the action starting with puck drop at 7pm on AHL Live
Lineup news and notes should be coming a little closer to game time – so catch me on twitter for the latest (@chansler).
EXPECTED MARLIES LINEUP
IN GOAL: #34 Drew MacIntyre
Ashton – Colborne – Leivo
Hamilton – Zigomanis – Abbott
D’Amigo – McKegg – Scott
Yeo – Acton – Ryan
Ranger – Holzer
Marshall – Komisarek
Mottau – Blacker