Flint, Mich. – The Flint Firebirds will play their second-to-last home game of the 2018-19 season Saturday night when they host the Windsor Spitfires. Puck drop is set for 7 p.m. (ET) at the Dort Federal Credit Union Event Center.
Saturday marks the fifth of six total meetings between the two clubs this season, and the third of three games in Flint. The Firebirds have won both home games in the series thus far, and surrendered both road games. The final meeting between these teams will be Thursday night in Windsor.
Windsor enters the contest with a record of 24-32-5-3, ranking them fourth in the West Division and eighth in the 10-team Western Conference. The Spit’s have won three of their past 10 games, and picked up points in six of 10. The Firebirds have won four of their past 10, and picked up points in six games during that stretch. Flint’s record stands at 13-45-6-0.
Most recently, the Firebirds dropped a 3-2 overtime decision in London in front of a sold-out crowd of more than 9,000 fans Friday night (Watch Highlights). Windsor was idle Friday after a 4-3 deficit to the Owen Sound Attack on home-ice Thursday.
On special teams, the Spitfires rank 16th on the power play, scoring on 18.5% of their opportunities. Flint has scored on 14.9% of their chances with the man-advantage, which is 19th in the OHL. Windsor is tied for the league’s sixth-best penalty kill, shutting the opposition down 80.4% of the time. The Firebirds are killing penalties at a 69.4%.
Saturday is Overager Night, Whaley Night and Scout Night! The Firebirds’ two “Overagers,” Hakon Nilsen and Emanuel Vella will be honored prior to the game. In the OHL, an overager is a player that begins the season at 20 years of age. A team is only allowed to have three overage players on their roster after the trade deadline in January, which is their final allowed season in the OHL. Also, all scouts in attendance receive the Firebirds’ official ‘scout patch.’
In addition, the Firebirds are teaming up with the Whaley Children’s Center (WCC) for a donation drive where fans can bring in five or more personal hygiene items to receive a complimentary Silver Level ticket, presented by Genesee Packaging, Inc. and Landaal Packaging and sponsored by Corrigan Moving Systems, Big John Steak & Onion, and Oasis Outsourcing. Proceeds from the Firebirds’ gameday 50-50 raffle will be donated to WCC.
The Whaley Children’s Center is a private agency that focuses on caring for children and families in crisis and has a great need for a variety of personal hygiene products including antibiotic cream, band-aids, Chapstick, children’s chewable Motrin/Tylenol/Pepto-Bismol, disposable cleaning wipes, ethnic hair care products, feminine hygiene products, first aid kits, hair brushes, heat packs, laundry soap & scent boosters, liquid body wash, lotion (hypoallergenic), Nair, paper towel, overnight pads, toilet paper, undergarments, twin XL bedding, etc.
Early bird ticket packages for the Flint Firebirds’ 2019-20 OHL season are on sale now. A $50 deposit reserves your seat for next season! The special early bird price deadline is Tuesday, April 30th and fans can secure their seats for next season at the Dort Federal Event Center Box Office from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday thru Friday. For additional pricing and ticket information, fans can call the box office at (810) 744-0580 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Single game tickets for all Firebirds games are $12 / Bronze, $16 / Silver, $20 / Gold and $26 / VIP seating (Seating Chart). All seats are reserved / assigned seating. Fans can purchase tickets by calling (810) 744-0580, in-person at the Dort Federal Event Center Box Office or online at ticketmaster.com here.
Players to Watch:
Flint Firebirds (13-45-6-0, 5th West Division):
Flint captain Ty Dellandrea (Dallas Stars) leads all Firebirds in offensive production. He has 60 total points (21G, 39A) in 56 contests. Jake Durham and Ethan Keppen are tied for second, each with 55 points in 64 games. Keppen has 27 goals now after finding the back-of-the-net on the power-play in London last night. Durham holds the team-lead in goals-scored with 35.
Riley McCourt leads the blue-liners with six goals and now has 32 points in 46 games. Vladislav Kolyachonok leads the first-year players for the Firebirds 28 total points (4G, 24A) through 50 games-played.
Last night, Emanuel Vella set a new single-game record for Flint goaltenders with 54 saves on 57 shots. He holds a 4.78 goals-against average (GAA) and a .878 save percentage (SAV%) with six wins in 40 appearances. Luke Cavallin has a 5.43 GAA and a .859 SAV% across 34 appearances. Cavallin also has six victories between the pipes.
NHL: The Firebirds have two players with NHL ties consisting of Dennis Busby (Arizona Coyotes) and Ty Dellandrea (Dallas Stars). In addition, Luke Cavallin, Kyle Harris, Ethan Keppen, Vladislav Kolyachonok, Eric Uba, Cody Morgan, Emmet Pierce and Jacob Winterton are eight first-time eligible skaters for the upcoming NHL Draft in June. Cavallin, Keppen, Kolyachonok and Uba were among the 50 OHL Players in NHL Central Scouting’s Midterm Rankings ‘Players to Watch’ list for the upcoming NHL Draft.
Despite Flint playing in just their fourth season in the OHL, Alex Nedeljkovic (Carolina Hurricanes) and Kole Sherwood (Columbus Blue Jackets) are two former Firebirds to play in the NHL. Ty Dellandrea (Dallas Stars), Vili Saarijarvi (Detroit Red Wings) and Jalen Smereck (Arizona Coyotes) have played in NHL pre-season contests.
Windsor Spitfires (24-32-5-3, 4th West Division):
Third-year forward Cole Purboo leads the Spit’s with 51 points (27G, 24A) through 64 games-played. Curtis Douglas (Dallas Stars) is second with 25 goals and 49 total points in 63 contests. Daniel D’Amico is third with 46 points (21G, 25A).
Adam Jean-Luc Foudy, younger brother of London’s Liam Foudy, tops the freshmen class for the Spitfires. He has 6 goals and 39 assists in 59 games. Connor Corcoran (Vegas Golden Knights) leads the rearguards with 31 points (9G, 22A).
Between the pipes, netminder Colton Incze has eight wins in 30 appearances. He carries a 3.44 goals-against average (GAA) and a save-percentage (SAV%) of .891. First-year goaltender Kari Piiroinen has a 4.50 GAA and a .867 SAV% in 24 appearances.
NHL: The Spitfires have two players with NHL ties, consisting of Curtis Douglas (Dallas Stars) and Connor Corcoran (Vegas Golden Knights). In addition, defenseman Lev Starikov and netminder Kari Piiroinen were named to November’s NHL Central Scouting’s North American ‘Players to Watch’ list.
Notable Windsor alumni to play in the NHL include Ed Jovanovski, Matt Cooke, Cory Stillman, Jason Spezza, Steve Ott, Jason York, Josh Bailey, Tim Gleason, Mike Rupp, Cam Fowler, Taylor Hall, Adam Henrique, Kyle Wellwood, Todd Warriner, Steve Downie, Jamie Allison, Ryan Ellis and Firebirds’ head coach Eric Wellwood.
Saturday evening’s contest can be heard live on the radio throughout Flint & Mid-Michigan on US 103.1 FM, online at www.us103.com or by downloading the US 103 app here. Dominic Hennig will call the play-by-play action on the Flint Firebirds Hockey Radio Network. Pregame coverage will begin 30 minutes prior to puck drop at 6:30 p.m.
Saturday’s game will also be televised live in Windsor on YourTV channel 11 / 700 (HD) for Cogeco TV cable subscribers. Additionally, the game will be televised live throughout the province of Ontario on the OHL Action Pak on channel 445 for both Rogers TV and Cogeco TV cable subscribers. OHL fans with cable television in Ontario can add the OHL Action Pak to their television plan to catch the Firebirds in action, home or away all season long. Along with Saturday’s game, 65 of the Firebirds’ 68 games throughout the 2018-19 season are also scheduled to be televised live across the province of Ontario on the OHL Action Pak.
All Flint Firebirds home and away games throughout the 2018-19 season can be watched anywhere in the world online on www.ohllive.com or on the OHL Live app. OHL Live is a league video streaming platform that delivers high quality live and on-demand coverage of all regular season and playoff games annually. The cost is $6.99 per game, $69.99 for Flint Firebirds away games only, $179.99 for all 68 home and away Firebirds games and $279.99 for all 1,360 OHL games throughout the 2018-19 season.
Blue Line Club Menu:
Presented by Great Lakes Sandwich Co & Cafe, Saturday evening’s dinner menu for the Blue Line Club features meatloaf, redskin potatoes, macaroni and cheese, beef stroganoff, steamed green beans, garden salad, dinner rolls with butter and assorted desserts. Saturday’s menu is available to all sponsors and season ticket holders for $12 per person. Dinner RSVPs are encouraged by emailing Karla Turner at email@example.com.
Photo Credit: Todd Boone / Flint Firebirds Hockey Club
For more information:
Director of Broadcasting & Communications
Flint Firebirds Hockey Club