Friday, September 22, 2017 – Flint Firebirds (0-0-0-0) vs. Kitchener Rangers (0-0-0-0) – 7:30pm
Home Game: 1 Season Game: 1
12 THINGS TO KNOW BEFORE TONIGHT’S GAME
Compiled by: Alyscia Warner, Communications Manager
1) Today marks the first of four meetings between the Kitchener Rangers and the Flint Firebirds. The Rangers were 1-2-1-0 vs. the Firebirds last season.
2) The Kitchener Rangers and Flint Firebirds also faced off in the first game of the regular season last year, a 4-2 win for the Rangers here at The Aud on September 23, 2016.
3) The Rangers skated to a 2-3-0-1 record in the 2017-18 preseason, while the Firebirds finished 1-4-0-0.
4) The Rangers named Connor Bunnaman the 53rd captain in team history prior to the game on Friday.
5) Kitchener finished sixth in the western conference standings in 2016-17 with a record of 36-27-3-2 and 77 points. They were eliminated in the opening round of the 2017 OHL Playoffs (4-0) by the Owen Sound Attack.
6) Flint was seventh in the conference at regular season’s end, finishing six points back of the Rangers (72) with a record of
32-28-3-5. They were ousted by the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds in the opening round in five games.
7) The Firebirds and London Knights completed a trade on Tuesday, with the Firebirds’ acquiring defenceman and Toronto Maple Leafs draft pick Nicolas Mattinen. In exchange, London received two 2nd round picks (FLT ’19, NIA ’20), a 3rd round pick (FLT ’18) as well as a conditional 3rd round pick (FLT ’19) if Mattinen plays an OA season for Flint next year.
8) The Firebirds had five players who participated in preseason play attend NHL camps: Luke Kirwan (CLB), Ryan Moore (NYR), Nicholas Caamano (DAL), Fedor Gordeev (TOR) and Nicolas Mattinen (TOR). All have been returned to Flint.
9) The Rangers had six players who participated in preseason play attend NHL camps: Connor Bunnaman (PHI), Connor Hall (PIT),
Luke Richardson (BOS), Logan Stanley (WPG), Greg Meireles (STL) and Rickard Hugg (WPG). Stanley has not yet returned to Kitchener.
10) Friday could potentially mean the OHL debut for 13 players. Seven Firebirds players have yet to suit up (Ethan Keppen, Kyle Harris, Jack Wismer, Nikita Alexandrov, Marcus Gretz, Zack Pilon, Luke Cavallin) while Jack York, Adam Liška, Rickard Hugg, Grayson Ladd,
Anthony Dumont-Bouchard and Mike Petizian await their first game for the Rangers.
11) Since relocating to Flint two seasons ago, the Firebirds record in their season opener is 2-0-0-0. The Rangers record in season openers in the last ten years is (8-1-1-0). Last season was the first season opener win for the Rangers since 2013-14.
12) Did You Know?: The record for most goals in a game by a single player is five for both franchises.
Dwight Foster (‘76-77), Al MacInnis (‘82-83), David Bruce (‘83-84), John Tucker (‘83-84) and Jeff Noble (‘87-88) each did it for the Rangers, while Kole Sherwood accomplished the feat last season (‘16-17) for the Firebirds.