December 31, 2021
TONIGHT: It’s the last game of 2021 as the Phantoms travel to Utica, NY to clash with the league-leading Comets who enter play at 18-1-2. The red-hot Phantoms are on five-game point streak at 4-0-1. This is the second game of the season between the Phantoms and the AHL affiliate of the New Jersey Devils. The Comets took an October 29 decision in upstate New York by a 5-2 count. The final game of the calendar year is scheduled for a 5:00 p.m. puck drop.
LAST TIME: Connor Bunnaman extended his goal-streak to three games and Pat Nagle was terrific in a 29-save masterpiece as part of a 2-1 win over Hershey on Tuesday night at PPL Center. Charlie Gerard opened the scoring in the first period with his first goal as a Phantom. Nagle was barely more than three minutes away from his first ever AHL shutout before Ryan Dmowski broke up his blank sheet with just 3:07 left. Hershey put the puck in the net just a half-second after the game ended and the horn had sounded on what WOULD have been the tying goal.
MOVING UP: Five Phantoms have been recalled to the Flyers and the Flyers’ Taxi Squad this week. Felix Sandstrom made his NHL debut on Thursday night San Jose and Gerry Mayhew played his first game as a Flyer on Wednesday night in an overtime win at Seattle. Jackson Cates, Cam York and Kirill Ustimenko also received the call for Philadelphia’s western road swing.
WELCOME: The Phantoms have added goalie Garrett Metcalf on a PTO (professional try out) from the Utah Grizzlies of the ECHL. The Phantoms have also recalled defenseman Ryan MacKinnon from the Reading Royals.
UTICA: The Comets started the season with an AHL all-time record 13-0-0 mark. They enter tonight’s game at 18-1-2. The Comets had games on Monday and Wednesday postponed due to AHL COVID-19 protocols affecting the Comets but are planning on a return to play tonight. The Comets have not played since December 17. Defenseman Reilly Walsh from Harvard leads Utica in scoring with 4-13-17. The Comets rate fourth in the AHL and second in the Eastern Conference at 3.6 goals per game.
POSTPONEMENTS: The Phantoms had two games postponed since they last played on December 21. Their scheduled contest at Hershey on December 22 was postponed due to AHL COVID-19 protocols ffecting the Hershey Bears and the team’s home game at PPL Center on Wednesday, December 29 was postponed due to COVID-19 protocols affecting the Cleveland Monsters. Make-up dates will be determined and tickets for the December 29 game will automatically be good for the make-up date. Fans with questions or wishing to exchange to a different date should contact the Phantoms via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
– The Phantoms are playing their first game since December 21.
– Pat Nagle has served as goalie in each contest of the five-game point streak for the Phantom sincluding three starts and two relief appearances. Nagle is 4-0-2 with the Phantoms.
– Connor Bunnaman is on a three-game goal streak. That’s tied with Max Willman for the longest such streak on the Phantoms this season.
– Cal O’Reilly has a three-game assist streak and also has points in six of the last seven games.
– Maksim Sushko has three goals in the last five games and is also on a three-game points streak (2-1-3).
UP NEXT: The Phantoms ring in the New Year on Saturday at 6:05 p.m. with a PPL Center matchup against the Bridgeport Islanders. $22 lower-level tickets are on sale for this special event.
Fri, Dec 31 at Utica Comets (5:00)
Sat, Jan 1 vs. Bridgeport Islanders (6:05) (PPL Center)
Wed, Jan 5 at Hershey Bears (7:00)
Fri, Jan 7 at Providence Bruins (7:05)
Sun, Jan 9 at Providence Bruins (3:05)
Tickets for upcoming Phantoms game available HERE
Upcoming Home Games:
Saturday, January 1 vs. Bridgeport Islanders (6:05) – Saturday Night Hockey Live with Jeiris Cook Trio
Saturday, January 15 vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (7:05) – United Way Night. BRING PASTA
Sunday, January 16 vs. Toronto Marlies (3:05) – Youth Jersey Night Presented by Service Electric
Sunday, January 30 vs. Hershey Bears (5:05) – Kids Activty Book Giveaway
Broadcast coverage of all Phantoms games, home and away, is available on the Phantoms 365 app and on 1470-WSAN. Fans can watch on AHLTV.com and can listen on their Smart Speakers at: “Play Phantoms Radio 24/7.” Join Voice of the Phantoms, Bob Rotruck, for all the action!
Service Electric Network again provides exclusive television coverage of all Phantoms home games with veteran announcer Steve Degler and Phantoms’ alum Steven Swavely on the call from the booth. Kristi Fulkerson reports from ice level and also from the Chickie’s and Pete’s studio with Dan Fremuth for pregame, intermission and postgame show analysis.