Fresh off a 5-1 victory in the Rabobank Arena on Saturday night, the San Jose Barracuda will look to open their season with three straight wins — something they have never before accomplished in franchise history — against the last team they beat, the Bakersfield Condors.
The Condors will get some reinforcements tonight, with Ethan Bear returning from the Edmonton Oilers after being scratched for their first game of the season. They also conducted a bit of a goalie swap, as Shane Starrett comes up from the Wichita Thunder and Dylan Wells goes down.
The Barracuda are missing one of their best scorers so far in Dylan Gambrell, who is still on a road trip with the mother club. His 3 points (2 goals, 1 assist) in the Barracuda’s season-opener puts him third on the Cuda in scoring, behind Francis Perron (2 goals, 2 assists) and Nick DeSimone (1 goal, 3 assists). Other multi-point performers so far include Maxim Letunov, Jayden Halbgewachs, Vincent Praplan and Kyle Wood.
Bakersfield’s scoring is a little more spread out. Over two games so far, center Brad Malone leads the team with 4 points (1 goal, 3 assists). Forwards Josh Currie and Cameron Hebig each have 1 goal and 2 assists apiece.
A familiar face also returns to the SAP Center: former Sharks assistant coach Jay Woodcroft will be behind the bench for the Condors tonight as their new head coach, after being “demoted” in the past off-season.
No word on tonight’s starters yet, but I’d expect Antoine Bibeau and Al Montoya to get the nods in goal. Look for Tim Clifton to draw in as well on the fourth line after Gambrell’s call-up on Saturday evening.
The puck drops at 7:00 p.m. Pacific at the Tank. You can catch the action live on the new AHLTV.