Hershey Bears vs Bridgeport Sound Tigers Calder Cup playoff preview
The Hershey Bears clawed their way into the playoff hunt after starting the season 0-5. The Bears would use a historic franchise record run of consecutive wins, and consecutive points to do so. Hershey and Bridgeport will face off now for just the second time all time in the Calder Cup playoffs. The last time the Bears and Tigers got together in the playoffs was nine years ago. Back in 2010 Hershey would dispose of the Tigers in five games 4-1. Back then every playoff series was seven games. Now, we will see a best of five, where the first team to three wins will take the series.
Hershey will have a little playoff experience to speak to as the Bears have five players from Hershey’s 2016 Calder Cup finals run, and two players from the Washington Capitals Stanley Cup Finals title team. Forwards Riley Barber, Liam O’Brien (suspended for game one), and Nathan Walker, along with defenseman Tyler Lewington, and team MVP Aaron Ness all played in the finals run for the Bears, while forwards Shane Gersich, and the man who tied game five in the Stanley Cup finals Devante Smith-Pelly played for the Capitals during playoffs last season. DSP, who has 48 games of NHL Stanley Cup playoff experience has never recorded a game in the Calder Cup playoffs. Interesting story line headed into the playoffs for Hershey.
The Bridgeport Sound Tigers ended the AHL regular season with 95 points on the season. While the Hershey Bears finished just one point less at a surprising 94 points. Both teams however did record 43 wins. Hershey and Bridgeport faced-off six times during the AHL regular season, with each team winning three games. Bridgeport would win the season series however due to one of their losses being a shootout loss.
Game 1-Friday, Apr. 19 at Bridgeport, Webster Bank Arena, 7 p.m.
Game 2-Saturday, Apr. 20 at Bridgeport, Webster Bank Arena, 7 p.m.
Game 3-Tuesday, Apr. 23 vs Bridgeport, Giant Center, 7 p.m.
Game 4-Thursday, Apr. 25 vs Bridgeport, Giant Center, 7 p.m. (If Necessary)
Game 5-Saturday, Apr. 27 at Bridgeport, Webster Bank Arena, 7 p.m. (If Necessary)