The St. John’s IceCaps kick off the Calder Cup Playoffs tonight at Mile One Centre after clinching a berth on the final night of regulation.
It took all 76 games, but a 4-1 win over the Toronto Marlies last weekend punched St. John’s ticket to the playoffs, drawing the Syracuse Crunch in Round 1.
“The playoffs, yeah,” Zach Redmond said with a smile. “We’re anxious. We want things to get underway.”
It’s the first time the IceCaps seen playoff hockey since their magical run to the finals in 2014, ultimately losing to the Texas stars. Zach Redmond was on that team and is hoping for some deja vu this time around with the Canadiens franchise.
“Everyone knows how this place can get, the atmosphere it brings,” Redmond boasted of Mile One. “We’re hoping for a great crowd and deep run.”
Dating back to the Hamilton Bulldogs tonight’s game is the first playoff game a Montreal Canadiens farm team has played since the 2010-2011 season.
The Syracuse Crunch carry some corps players from the franchise’s past years like former captain Gabriel Dumont and propsect Michael Bournival.
“They know us, we know them,” said current captain Max Friberg. “We played them eight times, good games. It will be a tough series.”
The two teams split their season series four games a piece with Syracuse outscoring St. John’s 28-26.
Puck drop Friday and Saturday night is 7:30 p.m.