Marlies set to take on Griffins in Michigan

The Toronto Marlies will take to the ice Saturday night at 7 p.m. to face the Grand Rapids Griffins at Van Andel Arena.

This will be the second of six meetings between the clubs this season.

In their first encounter, the Marlies (3-3-1) edged out the Griffins 3-2 in a tightly-played contest at Ricoh Colisuem on Oct. 10.

Forward Andre Deveaux scored with 36 seconds to play in the third period as the Marlies clawed back from a 2-0 deficit.

On Thursday evening Toronto lost its second game of back-to-back contests against the Abbotsford Heat by a score of 5-3.

NCAA college product Tyler Bozak picked up the first goal of his AHL career, while Jiri Tlusty, and Dale Mitchell also scored for the Marlies.

Markham resident, Mike Zigomanis who was signed on Monday to a professional try-out contract, picked up his first assist in a Marlie uniform.

“We were sloppy in our own zone,” Marlies head coach Dallas Eakins told the Canadian Press after the loss.

“We were chasing pucks behind our net and we don’t normally do that.  We just made some real bone-headed mistakes in our own zone and that was the difference to me.”

Grand Rapids (1-4-0), the affiliate of the Detroit Red Wings, sits in the basement of the North Division and has lost four straight games.

It has been outscored by a 20-11 margin in the season’s early going and its special teams rank a lowly 27th in the AHL.

Former Marlies Kris Newbury and Jeremy Williams will be in the Griffins lineup to face the Marlies, while Michael Nylander, who was demoted yesterday by the Washington Capitals, will also be playing for Grand Rapids.

Griffin rookie forward Tomas Tatar picked up his first AHL assist in his debut last Sunday.

Tatar, 18, was selected 60th overall by the Red Wings in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft and he is the youngest player skating in the AHL this season.

Marlies assistant coach Derek King played four seasons for the Griffins (1999-2000; 2002-2004) tallying 73 goals and 130 assists in that span.

He ranks third on their all-time goals list, fourth in assists and points, and second with a plus-71 rating.