1. Syracuse Crunch 4-0-0-1 9 Pts – After the Tampa Bay Lightning moved it’s Calder Cup & record setting group from Norfolk, VA to Syracuse NY, the group that was crowed last year’s champs has continued it’s winning ways within the first five games of this season with points in all five games and winning the last four even in dramatic fashion. Syracuse allowed five goals in the first 26:35 of a game vs. the Binghamton Senators before storming back with six unanswered goals of their own to win in overtime at the Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena on Saturday, October 20th . The Crunch also boast 3 players in the top ten in scoring including: 1) Cory Conacher 4+5+9 3) Tyler Johnson 5+3=8 & 9) Ondrej Palat 1+6=7
2. Norfolk Admirals 4-0-0-0 8 Pts – Is there a little magic going on in Norfolk as the former group of players from Syracuse NY have moved down to Hampton Roads with the affiliation swap over the summer and have come out of the box with 4 straight wins vs. Worcester twice and Connecticut twice. It seems that Head Coach Trent Yawney has found away to get production from all four lines that he has put onto the ice led by Kyle Palmieri, Sami, Vatanen, Peter Holland, Corey Elkins, Troy Bodie and Patrick Maroon.
3. Lake Erie Monsters 4-1-0-0 8 Pts – Who are the Lake Erie Monsters? Not many may know, but the Monsters are being backstopped by two rookie net-minders who between the two have only let in seven goals in five games, Sami Aittokallio and Calvin Pickard. Pickard has seen action in three games and has posted two shutouts all ready this season vs. the Toronto Marlies on 10/14 & vs. the Texas Stars 10/21. Last season with the WBS Penguins, Bryan Lerg scored 27 clutch goals and added 25 assists which was a big reason why he was added to the Monsters roster in the off season; the Monsters winning four of it’s first five games with only two points from Lerg makes this start an impressive one and should make the Western Conference watch out because if Lerg starts to add more to the offensive side of the things, the Monsters will be very hard to beat.
4. Abbotsford Heat 3-0-0-1 7 Pts – Whats impressive about the start to the Heat’s season is that in four games, the Heat have only given up seven goals to it’s oppenents like the North Division leading Lake Erie Monsters. Gaining points in all four games is important as the team boasts a top ten scorer in league with Ben Walter 2+5=7; has a rookie help lead the team with points with Sven Baertschi 3+3=6 and getting instant production with four goals from Roman Horak matching his total point all ready from last season.
5. Bridgeport Sound Tigers 3-0-0-0 6 Pts – The much talked about Northeast Division has a team sitting undefeated through three games at the top and before the season started no one would have ever guessed that it would be the Bridgeport Soundtigers. However, that’s ok with the Soundtigers. Most teams will find that when they play the Soundtigers this season that they have some of the best talent in the league with players like Nino Niederreiter who leads the team with 3+2=5; Casey Cizikas 2+1=3 and recently acquired from the WBS Penguins, Brandon DeFazio 2+1=3. Last year, one of the best teams at the end of the regular season has started out 3-0-0-0 back stopped by 3rd year pro, Kevin Poulin.