IOWA HOCKEY CLASSIC PREVIEW – IOWA WILD VS. GRAND RAPIDS GRIFFINSDec 21, 2019
Iowa Wild (15-11-2-2; 34 pts.) vs. Grand Rapids Griffins (12-15-1-2; 27 pts.)
In the final game before the holiday break, Iowa and Grand Rapids compete in the second of two consecutive meetings between the two clubs. Following a junior varsity and varsity contest of the Des Moines Oak Leafs and Capitals, the Wild vs. Griffins game will conclude the first-ever Iowa Hockey Classic. Iowa heads into the contest in third place in the Central Division with 34 points while the Griffins are in seventh place with 27 points.
The Wild sent the fans home happy with a 4-2 victory against the Griffins in the organization’s Teddy Bear Toss Game. For the second consecutive season, forward Colton Beck scored the goal that made the bears fly. Forward Will Bitten scored his fifth goal of the year and forward Gerry Mayhew added tallies No. 15 and 16 of the season in the contest. Goaltender Kaapo Kahkonen stopped 26 of 28 shots for his ninth victory of the year.
- Forward Colton Beck scored his 100th AHL point in his 300th game in an Iowa Wild sweater Friday night.
- Forward Kyle Rau’s five-game assist streak is tied for the longest active streak in the AHL and his seven assists since Dec. 14 leads all AHL skaters.
- Iowa has allowed a power-play goal in its last four straight contests and seven of its last eight games.
- Friday’s game marked the 10th time this season the Wild have earned the victory while allowing the first goal of the contest.
- Friday’s game was goaltender Jimmy Howard’s first loss at the AHL level since Feb. 4, 2017.
- Grand Rapids has killed off its last 24 penalties.
- Forward Eric Tangradi has six points (4g, 2a) in his six games since returning to the Grand Rapids lineup.
- Detroit loaned forward Joe Veleno and defenseman Moritz Seider to their respective countries for the World Junior Championship on Dec. 18.
The Iowa Wild 2019-20 regular season is presented by MercyOne Des Moines Medical Center and runs from October through April. For more information, please contact the Wild office by calling 515-564-8700 or by visiting www.iowawild.com.