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PREVIEW: Vancouver Giants at Kamloops Blazers (Game #47)

Derek Guscott

Tonight in Kamloops the Vancouver Giants take to the ice in search of their third straight victory, and second in as many days against the Kamloops Blazers. Last night at the LEC the Giants were full marks in a 5-4 overtime victory. It marked the first victory of the season for the G-Men against Kamloops. A win tonight and some standings help could vault the Giants back into a tie for a top-three playoff spot in the B.C. Division.

KAMLOOPS BLAZERS

OVERVIEW:

Head Coach: Shaun Clouston

Record: 32-12-2-1

Home Record: 18-4-0-1

Last 10: 8-1-1-0

Record vs. VAN: 4-0-1-0

Goals For/Goals Against: 203 GF/116 GA (+87)

Power Play: 25.8% (3rd)

Penalty Kill: 88.0% (1st)

Leading Scorers: Zane Franklin (26-48-74) Orrin Centazzo (34-32-66), Connor Zary (30-34-64)

ANOTHER BIG NIGHT FOR ZARY:

Last night the Blazers were led offensively by 2020 NHL Draft prospect Connor Zary. The 2001-born forward from Saskatoon scored twice and added an assist for Kamloops, bringing his goal total to 30 and his point total to 64. Zary leads all Blazers with three goals and eight assists for 11 points against Vancouver this season. He has 17 points in his past eight games altogether.

HOME COOKING:

The Kamloops Blazers have won six straight games at home dating back to the start of 2020. They’ve accumulated 18 home victories which is the second most in the entire WHL. The only team that has more home wins than Kamloops is Portland (20). In three previous home meetings against the Giants, Kamloops is 3-0.

KAMLOOPS NOTES:

  • Dylan Garand has played every second of hockey for the Blazers against the Giants. His record is 4-0-1-0 with two shutouts, a 1.56 goals-against average and a .938 save percentage.
  • The big three of Orrin Centazzo, Zane Franklin and Connor Zary have combined for 12 goals and 15 assists against the Giants.
  • The Kamloops Blazers power play has gone 9/25 against Vancouver in five games.

 

VANCOUVER GIANTS

OVERVIEW:

Head Coach: Michael Dyck

Record: 21-20-3-2

Road Record: 11-10-1-2

Last 10: 4-4-1-1

Record vs. KAM: 1-3-1-0

Goals For/Goals Against: 118 GF/122 GA (-4)

Power Play: 17.0% (17th)

Penalty Kill: 80.2% (9th)

Leading Scorers: Tristen Nielsen (20-24-44), Eric Florchuk (16-21-37), Justin Sourdif (15-19-34)

ERIC ‘SCORE’CHUK:

Last night’s overtime winning goal came courtesy of Eric Florchuk who continues to impress in his early tenure with the Giants. In nine games with the G-Men, Florchuk has posted five goals and eight assists for 13 points. His three-point outing effort last night against Kamloops marked his second since joining the Giants. For the season he’s got 16 goals and 21 assists to his credit.

ANOTHER ‘POWER’FUL NIGHT:

Since the trade deadline the Vancouver Giants power play is now 12/32 and clicking at a 37.5 percent clip. The Giants scored twice on the power play in the second period of last night’s game as part of a four goal outburst. Eric Florchuk has been especially dangerous on the power play with a goal and six assists for seven points over the course of nine games. The Giants power play improved to 3/20 on the season against Kamloops.

VANCOUVER NOTES:

  • When Tristen Nielsen records  two-or-more points the Giants are 9-0.
  • Bowen Byram has now managed a goal and three assists for four points in four games against Kamloops.
  • Justin Sourdif and Tristen Nielsen both lead the Giants with 11 road goals scored.
  • 10 of Tristen Nielsen’s 20 goals this season have come in the third period.
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