AHL Today: IceCaps, Bears extend streaks, Barberio making mark in Tampa

AHL Today is a roundup of the night that was, the day ahead, and anything you may have missed. Your quick look at what’s going on around the league.


To Watch:

  • Empty schedule tonight. Falcons fans can watch Tim Erixon, who has been recalled from the Springfield Falcons, and will suit up tonight for the Columbus Blue Jackets as they take on the Carolina Hurricanes.

Last Night:

  • ST. JOHN’S 3, PROVIDENCE 1: For the fourth game in a row, Michael Hutchinson got the call between the pipes. His third start in three nights, the 23-year-old Barrie, Ont. native stopped 34 shots, the only chink in his armour being a Matt Lindblad goal halfway through the first period. With the win, Hutchinson and the IceCaps extended their winning streak to four games, and will put the streak on the line on Friday when they take visit Lewiston to take on the Portland Pirates.
  • HERSHEY 2, WILKES-BARRE/SCRANTON 0: The Bears, without head coach Mike Haviland, pushed their win streak to five. Before the game, Scott Stuccio tweeted that Haviland would be unavailable due to a medical issue, but we’ve yet to discover what exactly kept Haviland away from the team. Here’s hoping it’s nothing serious. As for the game, let’s turn it over to Chirps From Center Ice:
    The Penguins lose 2-0 to the Hershey Bears in a game which, if a power play goal here or there go in, then maybe the result is a little different. The Pens were 0-for-7 on the power play tonight, 0-for-15 for the weekend.”


Alex Petrovic (D) From: Florida Panthers To: San Antonio Rampage
Tim Erixon (D) From: Springfield Falcons To: Columbus Blue Jackets

News & Notes:

  • A positive story from Haviland being unavailable: Bears defenceman Patrick Wellar, who was sidelined after taking a shot from Syracuse’s Eric Neilson during a fight on Saturday, was patrolling the bench as an assistant. [PennLive.com]
  • Former Crunch defenceman Mark Barberio is making his mark with the big club, and it’s turning some heads, including Jon Cooper, Tampa’s head coach, who wants the young defenceman in the lineup. [Syracuse.com]
  • Heat fans shouldn’t expect to see Michael Ferland back in the lineup. [FAN960]



Barberio signs one-year deal with Lightning

The Tampa Bay Lightning announced today that they’ve come to terms with defenceman Mark Barberio on a one-year deal that will keep the 23-year-old with the organization in 2013-14.

A Montreal native, Barberio has spent the last three seasons with the Lightnings top affiliates in Norfolk and Syracuse. In a combined 215 regular season games between the two clubs, the offensive defenceman has tallied 30 goals and 104 assists.

Described by EliteProspects as having a heavy shot and the tools to become a talented offensive defenceman, the scouting and statistics site also cites a need for the 2012-13 AHL All-Star to improve on his own end of the ice.

In 18 playoff games with the Crunch last season, Barberio thrilled Syrcause fans with an outstanding 15 points (3-12). While the Crunch came up short of having their roster repeat as Calder Cup Champions — the team had done so before, under the Norfolk Admirals banner — Barberio was still able to give them something to cheer about and look forward to, as he lead all defenceman in scoring in the playoffs.

Financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed, but the contract is a two-way pact that will see Barberio in the AHL for a good amount of time.

JT Brown gets new deal with Crunch

JT Brown has signed a one-year, two-way deal that will keep him with the Syracuse Crunch through next season.

Brown, who came to the Crunch last season, gets a new deal on the heels of a season that saw him put up ten goals and 18 assists in 51 games with the Lightning’s top affiliate. At 23 years old, Brown signed a two-year deal with the Lightning in March 2012 after his NCAA career came to an end.

In two seasons in the NCAA, both spent with the University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs, Brown tallied 84 points (40-44) in 71 career games. In his first season with the Bulldogs, he helped the team win the NCAA Championship.

Brown’s last contract paid him $70,000 in the AHL, and saw him get a hefty pay raise — he made $925,000 with Tampa Bay — in the NHL. Terms of his new deal have not been released.

UPDATED: Sexton leaves Crunch, heads to Europe

Dan Sexton has reportedly signed a contract with a European club.

Sexton, a 26-year-old from Apple Valley, Minn., had a meteoric rise through the ECHL, AHL, and onto the NHL’s Anaheim Ducks roster, but it appears he’s onto new endeavours.

A veteran of 144 games, Sexton was an offensively gifted forward. Through his AHL career, Sexton posted 36 goals and 64 assists while playing with the Manitoba Moose, Norfolk Admirals, and Syracuse Crunch. During his most recent stint with the Crunch, Sexton helped the team make its way to the Calder Cup finals. In 18 postseason games, Sexton had six goals and six assits.

Though the Lightning submitted a qualifying offer to the winger, he’s decided to look for work elsewhere.

UPDATE: According to The Post-Standard’s Syracuse.com Hockey Twitter feed, Sexton will suit up with TPS of the SM-Liiga.