With their regular season finale in the books, the Milwaukee Admirals finally know who their opponent will be for the first round of the Calder Cup playoffs. Finishing in the 6th spot in the west, the Admirals will face the third-placed Toronto Marlies in a best-of-five series.
The two teams have only played each other twice this season, with the Admirals winning both games. The first meeting came on January 21st, when third-period goals by Colton Sissons and Miikka Salomaki propelled the Ads to a 3-2 victory. The second came on March 22nd, a 5-1 drubbing by Milwaukee. Toronto and Milwaukee have never played each other in the post-season before.
The Marlies won the North division of the Western Conference by 11 points, posting a 45-25-6 record. They are led by T.J. Brennan, the AHL Defender of the Year, who has 25 goals and 47 assists in 76 games this season.
The Admirals have been on a hot streak in April, winning seven of their nine games down the stretch. Six of those victories were by three or more goals. They, like many teams whose NHL affiliates have missed the playoffs, will have their entire lineup at their disposal, including Sissons and Calle Jarnkrok. This is the 12th straight season that the Admirals have made the playoffs.
The series kicks off with Friday and Saturday 7 p.m. games in Milwaukee before heading up to Toronto. The teams will get a few days rest before returning to action on Thursday at 6 p.m. They'll also play in Toronto on Saturday and Sunday at two if necessary.