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Grand Rapids Griffins Win the Calder Cup

Jennifer Leigh

The AHL playoffs are over and your Grand Rapids Griffins have won the Calder Cup after defeating the favorite Syracuse Crunch 5-2 at the War Memorial Arena in New York on Tuesday.

The Griffins jumped out to a 3-0 series lead with two wins in Syracuse and one in Grand Rapids before being taken to game six by back-to-back Crunch victories at the Van Andel Arena. After giving up the first goal of the game, the Griffins scored two unanswered goals to take the lead. Syracuse tied it in the third, but Brennan Evans gave the Griffins a lead they wouldn't relinquish before Tomas Tatar and Joakim Andersson added empty-netters.

On their way to the Final, the Griffins defeated the Houston Aeros, the Toronto Marlies, and the Oklahoma City Barons. Each of those series went the maximum number of games. On the other side, Syracuse flew through the first three rounds only losing one game to the Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins in the Eastern Conference Finals.

Tomas Tatar was named the AHL's playoff MVP. He scored 16 goals and was a force for the Griffins. Petr Mrazek also put up a slate of excellent performances, leading the AHL in shutouts during the playoffs. Other standout performances came from Nathan Paetsch, Brennan Evans, Joakim Andersson, Gustav Nyquist, Tomas Jurco, Jeff Hoggan, and Jan Mursak.

Congratulations to the Griffins for their series victory.