Grand Rapids and Texas Face Off, Both Desperate for Divisional Points

(Credit: Texas Stars)

Update: Joel Kiviranta was reassigned to Texas this morning.

Both the Texas Stars and Grand Rapids Griffins are desperate for some points tonight. With the top of the table locked up by Milwaukee and Iowa and Rockford battling it out for who gets home ice advantage in two and three seeds, the rest of the division is in a heated 5-way battle for the remaining playoff spot.

With the parity of the clubs in question right now, the last spot is anyone's to grab if there is a hot streak to be found. Nearly at the halfway mark, there's enough baked into the standings already though to argue that none of these teams will be able to separate too much from the others. All that makes two divisional points tonight that much more important for both of these competitors.

Former Texas Stars Pat Nagle has been in the pipes for the Griffins over the last few games but was just reassigned to Toledo ahead of the weekend. He only allowed two goals each in his last two outings, a win and a loss. Grands Rapids is in much the same boat as Texas overall on scoring for and against. They can't get the goals when they need them, and they often allow too many when they can. Calvin Pickard is back with the club now and should suit up for the weekend with Filip Larsson.

With the recall of Joel Kiviranta, Texas added Anthony Nellis from Idaho. It's Nellis's first AHL recall and his potential first AHL action. He's got 11-11=22 in 33 games with the Steelheads.

Injuries and callups:
Kiviranta (callup)
Caamano (undisclosed injury)
Mascherin (shoulder)