5 Keys to Game 1 of the OHL Championship Series Presented by Mercedes-Benz Burlington
Game 1 at Sault St. Marie: Soo 3 – Hamilton 4 OT
Game 2 at Sault St. Marie: May 5th at 7:07 pm
GP: 16 G: 9 A: 18 PTS: 27
GP: 19 G: 16 A: 13 PTS: 29
- Taking Care of the Puck
As seen throughout the regular season and playoffs, both the Bulldogs and Greyhounds are very fast and skilled teams. If one team is careless with the puck, the other team will quickly turn that around and create a scoring chance off of it. In Game 1, the Bulldogs were good at limiting their mistakes, while at the same time taking advantage of the uncharacteristic high number of giveaways by the Greyhounds.
- Discipline & Penalty Kill
The tougher the competition has gotten, the better the Bulldogs’ penalty kill has been. In the first 2 rounds the Bulldogs penalty Kill was 75.61% and the team averaged 4.1 powerplay opportunities against them. Through the last 5 games the team has reduced their short-handed opportunities to 3.5 while killing penalties at an 85.71%. Game 1 saw the Bulldogs keep the Greyhounds to just 2 power play opportunities, giving up only 2 shots and not allowing a goal.
- Who’s Hot?
Entwistle scored the opening goal in Game 1 and then later added the overtime winner. The Arizona Coyotes prospect has been a steady goal scoring presence for the Bulldogs, with 3 goals in his past 3 games, and 6 in his last 7. He was named the first star of the game in Game 1 for his clutch performance.
This is Raddysh’s 3rd trip to the OHL Championships, with his first 2 coming with the Erie Otters. Raddysh is on a 5 game point streak that has seen him score 4 goals and add 3 assists. Raddysh tied up the game at 3-3 in Game 1. It was his career high 13th goal of the post season.
- Scoring Chances
The Bulldogs were outshot 31-30 in Game 1, however a closer look at these shots shows that the Bulldogs actually had the edge in shots. Of the Bulldogs’ 30 shots, only 9 of them came from low danger scoring areas, meanwhile of the Greyhounds’ 31 shots, 15 of them were from low danger scoring areas. If the Bulldogs can keep the Greyhounds to the outsides and not allow them to move in to high danger scoring areas, Kaden Fulcher will be able to take whatever the Greyhounds throw at him.
- Flying out of the Gate
The 1st period of Game 1 saw Hamilton control the game, outshooting the Soo 14-6, and taking a 1-0 lead with 2:33 remaining in the 1st period. The Bulldogs are 10-1 in these playoffs in games when they score first, and have won 10 in a row when they have done so. Nicholas Caamano, Matthew Strome