The Chicago Wolves had a big weekend as they had a home to home series with the division leader the Grand Rapids Griffins.
The Griffins won 5-4 in overtime Friday night. Petteri Lindbohm put the Wolves ahead at 18:09 left in the third period. But through the efforts of Tomas Nosek, the Griffins tied the game with 49 seconds remaining in the contest. And a minute and fifty one seconds into extra hockey, Evgeny Svechnikov put it past Jordan Binnington for the win. And back at the Allstate on Saturday, the Wolves fell again in overtime.
The Griffins picked up right where they left off Friday night by scoring first not even two minutes into the first period. Tyler Bertuzzi scored his 11th of the season by picking up a rebound and shot it between Ville Husso’s legs.
The Wolves would get two powerplay opportunities later in the period but came up empty. Currently among the best in the league when up a man, the Wolves had plenty of chances but could not find the net.
The Griffins are even better on the powerplay and went up 2-0 with the man advantage in the second period. Eric Tangradi was credited with the goal after redirecting it past Husso.
Samuel Blais put the Wolves on the board at 10:58 in the second period while on the powerplay. Blais rushed into the zone and picked up a loose puck in front of the net and got his 20th of the season. Blais, playing in his first pro season, become the first Chicago Wolves rookie to score twenty goals since Ty Rattie did it back in 2013-2014.
Speaking of Rattie, he scored his first goal Friday night since re-joining the Wolves last month. Rattie got his chance to play for the Blues earlier this season and it did not work out too well. He was put on waivers and claimed by the Carolina Hurricanes. After appearing in just five games with Carolina, only tallying 1 assist, he was waived by the Hurricanes. The former Wolves standout was picked up the Blues and sent to Chicago.
The Wolves tied it up at 13:37 in the third period with a strike from Blais knotting it up at two. The Wolves were getting quality chances all period and Husso made some big stop to keep his team in this one.
Neither team could break the tie in the third period leading to overtime in the final meeting between these two teams in the regular season. And it was Ben Street of the Griffins who shot it past stick side of Husso for the win. The Griffins swept the weekend series and picked up the big win to extend their lead in the central division.
The Chicago Wolves will have two days off before traveling to Cleveland to face the Monsters on Tuesday and Wednesday. They do not return to the Allstate Arena until April 1st when the Monsters come to town.