The Guelph Storm would like to congratulate former goaltender Thomas McCollum on winning the Calder Cup with the Grand Rapids Griffins. On Tuesday night the Griffins won their first Calder Cup defeating former Storm forward Richard Panik and the Syracuse Crunch, 5-2. McCollum played back up to 67’s alum Petr Mrazek. Panik had 6 points in the six game series against the Griffins and 14 in 16 games throughout the 2013 playoffs with the Crunch.
The Grand Rapids Griffins won their first Calder Cup on Tuesday night, defeating the Syracuse Crunch, 5-2, in Game 6 of the American Hockey League’s championship series at the Onondaga County War Memorial at Oncenter.
The Griffins, who led the series 3-0 with two chances to close out the title on home ice, instead celebrated in front of a capacity crowd of 6,375 fans in Syracuse.
It is the first league title in the 17-year history of the Griffins franchise, including the last 12 as members of the AHL and the last 11 as the top development affiliate of the National Hockey League’s Detroit Red Wings.
Tomas Tatar, who scored twice in the Game 6 clincher, won the Jack A. Butterfield Trophy as the most valuable player in the Calder Cup Playoffs after totaling 21 points — including a league-best 16 goals — in 24 games.
Under first-year head coach Jeff Blashill, the Griffins eliminated the Houston Aeros (3-2), Toronto Marlies (4-2) and Oklahoma City Barons (4-3) before defeating Syarcuse in the Finals. Grand Rapids’ 2013 playoff roster featured eight players who appeared in the NHL with the parent Red Wings this season.
After staving off elimination with road wins in Games 4 and 5, the Crunch got on the board first on Tuesday with 2:45 left in the first period as Richard Panik pounced on the rebound of Matt Taormina‘s shot at the top of the crease and buried it behind a fallen Petr Mrazek. It was Panik’s fifth consecutive game with a goal, and his ninth goal of the postseason.
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