The second half is underway in the AHL season and the Providence Bruins are fighting for their playoff lives. Although there are still more than two months to go, the Providence Bruins would be at home watching the postseason if the season ended today. Providence is currently the Eastern Conference’s 10 seed with a record of 23-19-5-1. The 52 points they have are three points behind the eight seed and the six seed. Five teams are competing to be the last playoff berth.
Alexander Khokhlachev continues to pace Providence in scoring. The young center currently has 33 points (11g and 22a) to lead his club. Seth Griffith has performed admirably in Pastrnak’s absence. Griffith, who has spent a lot of time in Boston this season, has 14 points (7g and 7a) in only 13 AHL games, with a +7 rating. Although Griffith isn’t quite as exciting as Pastrnak and doesn’t have the NHL potential, he can still make things happen offensively.
He will be needed by Providence, as Providence has several other contributors who are sidelined due to injuries. Khokhlachev was unable to play yesterday because of a lower-body injury. His status is unknown. Bobby Robins, Matt Lindblad and Joe Morrow are also still out injured. Morrow will likely find out the extent of his injury over the coming days. Morrow suffered a severe injury to his knee in Friday’s win over Manchester (4-2). He hit the ice with such pain that he could not move. Morrow has suffered other injuries to his knees, and his MRI results, which were scheduled for yesterday, are not yet available.
Top prospect Malcolm Subban, a Boston native, has been recalled and is now enjoying his first NHL season. Niklas Svedberg, Boston’s backup goalie, is currently on a conditioning program with Providence. Subban will be replaced with Boston once it is over. Svedberg played three games for the P-Bruins and was a 2-1 goalie with a save percentage 90%. Subban and Jeremy Smith have both played at very high levels this season. Goaltender play has been strong throughout the season. Subban, despite being only 9-10-2, has a solid save rate of 92.1% with a GAA just 2.47. Smith is their top goalie with a save percentage at 92.7%, and a 2.22 GAA.
Providence, who has split their games this weekend, will be looking to get two points today at home against the Springfield Falcons. They are currently the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference.