Bertuzzi excited for Calder Cup final

Selected in the 4th round (78th overall) in the 2011 OHL Priority Selection, Tyler Bertuzzi was instantly favourite in the Royal City winning the Fan Club Award in his rookie Season. The Sudbury, Ontario native spent four seasons with the Storm and was a member of the 2013-14 OHL Championship team. Bertuzzi played a total of 201 games for the Storm while recording 72 goals and 100 assists for 172 points.

By Bruce Heidman, Sudbury Star

The Grand Rapids Griffins are on a roll in the American Hockey League playoffs, and local product Tyler Bertuzzi is playing a major role in the team’s success.

Following a great regular season, where the 22-year-old NHL prospect earned a seven-game callup with the Detroit Red Wings, Bertuzzi has averaged a point a game in the post-season, while also serving as a physical presence for his squad.

The Griffins have mowed down the opposition in the playoffs thus far, having swept the Milwaukee Admirals 3-0 in the first round before knocking off the Chicago Wolves 4-1. The Griffins then ousted the San Jose Barracuda in five games to earn a date with the Syracuse Crunch for the Calder Cup final, which begins Friday.

“Coming into this year, we knew we had a team that could go all the way and now we have an opportunity to play in the finals,” Bertuzzi said. “It is big time exciting. I won the OHL championship (with Guelph in 2014) and I’m looking for my first pro championship.”

Bertuzzi had 12 goals and 37 points along with 37 penalty minutes in 48 games played during the regular season, but he has ramped up his play in the playoffs, where he is 11th in league playoff scoring with six goals and seven assists for 13 points in 13 games played, to go along with a plus-four rating and a 30 penalty minutes for the always gritty forward.

“I have been playing pretty good hockey, and with a good team like we have, you have good linemates and we are playing good as a team, and if you play good as a team the points are going to come,” said Bertuzzi, who is fourth in team scoring in the playoffs. “The physical part is still going to stay the same for me, and playoff hockey is harder and tougher to play, but I like that.”

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