Springfield, which allowed 12 goals in two games against the Checkers just two weeks ago, earned a measure of revenge as goaltender Harri Sateri made 33 saves to earn the shutout. Charlotte now leads the season series 4-3-0, with the home team winning every game thus far.
Alex Nedeljkovic made 17 saves but saw his personal five-game win streak come to an end. As a team, the Checkers have now dropped two straight since putting together a season-long, five-game win streak.
The Checkers’ best opportunity to score came early the second period when Springfield’s Ryan Horvat earned an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for arguing an interference call against teammate Ludwig Bystrom, giving the Checkers a two-man advantage for a full two minutes. The Checkers failed to take advantage of that opportunity, however, with Nicolas Roy taking a high sticking penalty to negate the final 22 seconds.
In a game much tighter than the final score suggests, Charlotte looked like the team most likely to score and thus tie the game in the first half of the third period as they out-shot the Thunderbirds 7-0. Springfield would go against the run of play to score on their first opportunity, getting an odd-man rush as the result of Checkers’ defenseman Jake Chelios going down with an injury in the offensive zone.
Chelios would leave the game immediately following that play and did not return.