Just about a month after the NHL started firing on all cylinders again, time to check on the AHL as it hits the 50 game mark. For American Leaguers, this season more than any will be made and lost in the second half. With all the hot shot prospects long promoted back to the majors, the real cream of the AHL crop will inevitably rise to the top.
The P Bruins continue to roll this season, perched comfortably atop the Atlantic Division with a 9-1 record in their last 10 games. Not much change in Providence as the only real departure was the productive Chris Bourque. That keeps the core of the team together for the stretch run. Ryan Spooner leads the way with 37 points through 41 games, while vet Jamie Tardiff has lit the lamp 26 times in 44 games. Carter Camper has also stepped up with 29 helpers on the season. Meanwhile, one-time prospect Jordan Caron continues to disappoint with just 12 points and a negative 6 rating through 38 games. The Svedish Svedsation, Niklas Svedberg continues to impress in his first season overseas, posting a 24-6-2 record with 2 shutouts through 33 starts. He’s also rocking a 2.32GAA and a .921 SV%.
The P-Bruins only continue to improve while their opponents try to adjust to shifting rosters. Good performances down on the farm translates to confidence in depth up in the bigs. The ability to call guys up gives Peter Chiarelli a little leeway approaching the trade deadline. With just 32 games left to go, expect Providence to take control down the stretch and be sitting pretty come playoff time.