Week in Review
Last week's record2-0-0
Last 10 games7-3-0
Checkers 6, Belleville 1In their first-ever trip to Belleville, the Checkers’ offense struck early and often in a rout of the Senators. Nick Schilkey, Andrew Poturalski and Phil Di Giuseppe all lit the lamp within four minutes of each other during the first half of the opening frame, giving the visitors a comfortable lead right out of the gate. The home squad responded in the second, but Charlotte’s attack didn’t slow down, quickly answering with another pair of goals to wrap up the second. Andrew Miller notched one more for the Checkers in the final frame to seal the lopsided 6-1 victory for Charlotte. Alex Nedeljkovic made 28 saves between the pipes for the Checkers and moved to 6-0-0 on the season. Full recap
Checkers 2, Belleville 1The following night’s rematch was largely void of the offensive fireworks from Friday. Former Checker Ethan Werek gave Belleville their first lead of the weekend with a first period strike, an advantage that would hold until the third frame when Phil Di Giuseppe sniped a wrister top shelf on the power play to even the score. The Checkers rode that momentum for the remainder of the period and finally broke through in the last five minutes of regulation, when Valentin Zykov swooped in on a breakaway and converted for what would hold as the game-winning goal. Jeremy Smith’s 21 stops were enough to pick up the victory, snapping a three-game losing skid for the veteran netminder. Full recap
Three Stars Of The Week
Tyler Ganly0g, 2a
Phil Di Giuseppe2g, 1a
Valentin Zykov2g, 1a
EXPLOSIVE OFFENSEAfter another outburst on Friday, the Checkers have now scored at least five goals in six of their 11 games played this season. Charlotte is putting up 3.91 goals-per game, the second-highest average in the AHL, and has the third-highest overall goal total this season, with the two clubs ahead of it – Laval and Lehigh Valley – having played two more games.
The Checkers reached the five-goal plateau 10 times during the entirety of last season.
Z LIGHTS IT UP
Valentin Zykov set a career high in goals last season with 16, and looks to be well on his way to shattering that this year. The third-year pro has racked up a team-best seven goals through the first 11 games of this season, tying him for third in the AHL. With eight points in his last five games, Zykov has stormed his way to second on the club in scoring, trailing Lucas Wallmark by just one point.
- Injuries Shake Up Charlotte Blue Line Ahead Of Road Trip Read More
Last Week's News
Zykov’s seven goals are the second-most through the first 11 games of the season in franchise history, trailing only Drayson Bowman, who notched nine goals through the first 11 games of the 2012-13 season.
HOT STARTThe Checkers are off to their best start in franchise history this season, acquiring 16 of a possible 22 points to begin the campaign. That eclipses the 2012-13 season when they nabbed 15 points through the first 11 games. Charlotte’s 16 points are the second-most in the AHL this season, while the two clubs with 18 points in the standings – Toronto and Lehigh Valley – have played one and two more games, respectively.
ROAD WARRIORSWhereas last season the Checkers were nearly unbeatable at home, this year’s version of the team has been impressive on the road. Charlotte is 6-1-0-0 away from home this season, tied for the most wins on the road league wide.
By comparison, the Checkers won 12 games on the road all of last season and didn’t pick up their sixth until Jan. 10.
NED STAYS PERFECTIt was another start and another win for Alex Nedeljkovic on Friday as he stopped 28 shots to move to 6-0-0 on the season. The second-year pro is just two wins shy of his season total as a rookie last year, a campaign that didn’t see him record his sixth win until Jan. 21 – his 19th appearance.
Two netminders have gone as long or longer before recording their first loss of the season – Michael Leighton, who started 6-0-0 in 2016-17, and Daniel Altshuller, who went 7-0-1 to begin the 2015-16 campaign.
- Lucas Wallmark is tied for fourth in the league in scoring and tied for third in assists
- Valentin Zykov is tied for ninth in the AHL in scoring, tied for third in goals and ranked fourth in shooting percentage
- Warren Foegele is tied for the league lead in shorthanded goals and points and tied for third among league rookies in goals
- Alex Nedeljkovic is tied for the league lead in wins and ranks 11th in goals-against average
- Brenden Kichton missed 2 games starting Nov. 3
- Jake Chelios missed 2 games starting Nov. 3
- Oct. 30: (C) Janne Kuokkanen assigned to Charlotte (AHL)
- Nov. 2: (D) Josiah Didier recalled by Charlotte (AHL)
- Oct. 31: (C) Patrick Brown recalled by Carolina (NHL)
- Nov. 1: (D) Roland McKeown recalled by Carolina (NHL)
By the Numbers
|CATEGORY||RECORD||AHL RANK||LAST WEEK|
|Goals per game||3.91||2nd||t-3rd|
|Shots per game||29.82||17th||t-23rd|
|Goals allowed per game||2.91||15th||19th|
|Shots allowed per game||30.18||t-17th||t-25th|
|Penalty minutes per game||13.64||9th||t-17th|
|Points||Lucas Wallmark (13), Valentin Zykov (12), Andrew Miller, Phil Di Giuseppe (10)|
|Goals||Valentin Zykov (7), Warren Foegele (6), Phil Di Giuseppe, Andrew Miller (4)|
|Assists||Lucas Wallmark (10), Andrew Miller, Phil Di Giuseppe (6)|
|Power play goals||Valentin Zykov (3), Nick Schilkey, Phil Di Giuseppe (2)|
|Shorthanded goals||Warren Foegele (2)|
|Game-winning goals||Warren Foegele, Valentin Zykov (2)|
|Shots on goal||Phil Di Giuseppe (28), Lucas Wallmark (26), Warren Foegele (25)|
|Penalty minutes||Zack Stortini (23), Trevor Carrick (17), Philip Samuelsson (13)|
|Plus/minus||Philip Samuelsson (+8), Trevor Carrick (+7), Sergey Tolchinsky, Lucas Wallmark (+5)|
|Wins||Alex Nedeljkovic (6)|
|Goals-against average||Alex Nedeljkovic (2.35)|
|Save percentage||Alex Nedeljkovic (.916)|