Calgary Wranglers series preview: Kicking off 2024 against the Firebirds

Photo credit:Terence Leung/Calgary Wranglers
Paige Siewert
6 months ago
The Calgary Wranglers start 2024 with a two-game home series against the Coachella Valley Firebirds. Monday’s game is the only action in the AHL and despite the fact these two teams saw a lot of each other last year, this is only their second and third match-up this season. Coachella Valley hasn’t been as dominant this year sitting seventh in the Pacific Division. The division-leading Calgary Wranglers are the favourites in this series but they still can’t take this team lightly. Especially with their history. 

Projected lineups

Adam Klapka – Cole Schwindt – Matt Coronato 
Dryden Hunt – Clark Bishop – Emilio Pettersen
Alex Gallant – Ben Jones – William Stromgren
Lucas Ciona – Ilya Nikolaev – Mitch McLain
Jonathan Aspirot – Ilya Solovyov 
Yan Kuznetsov – Mark Pysyk
Will Riedell – Brady Lyle
Dustin Wolf
Oscar Dansk

Coachella Valley

Forwards: Luke Henmanm, John Hayden, Kole Lind, Max McCormick, Cameron Hughes, Ian McKinnon, Andrew Poturalski, Ryan Winterton, Tucker Robertson, Ville Petman, Marian Studenic, Jeremy McKenna, Shane Wright, Jacob Melanson, Logan Morrison 
Defencemen: Peetro Seppala, Cale Fleury, Mitch Reinke, Gustav Olofsson, Ville Ottavainen, Ryker Evans, Jimmy Schuldt, Connor Carrick
Goaltenders: Cale Morres, Ales Stezka, Jack LaFontaine


Matt Coronato – 21GP, 10G, 15A
Ben Jones – 29GP, 11G, 12A
Emilio Pettersen – 29GP, 6G, 16A
Coachella Valley
Max McCormick – 25GP, 11G, 12A
Cameron Hughes – 27GP, 6G, 16A
Kole Lind – 26G, 5G, 16A

Notes and expectations

The Firebirds got a notable reinforcement prior to this series. Ryker Evans returned to the team off an NHL call-up with the Seattle Kraken. The Calgary native has played in nine NHL games this year including the Kraken’s game against the Flames on Dec. 27. The left-handed defenceman has four points in the NHL this season and eight points in 18 games in the AHL this year.
Another name on the opposing end of this series that is of interest is Shane Wright. The 2022 fourth-overall draft pick is still very much in a developmental stage in his professional career. The hype around him was very high, especially last season as he sold out the Saddledome in his first appearance in Calgary. This year, he has played in three games with the Kraken and 24 games with the Firebirds. He sits at 17 points with 10 goals and seven assists in the AHL. He’s someone with something to prove and is going to be interesting to watch on the other end. 
On Calgary’s end, no transactions have taken place since their last series against the Abbotsford Canucks however, their NHL prospects are coming off of a pair of outstanding performances. Matt Coronato had a four-point night with two goals and two assists on Friday and Dustin Wolf is coming off of a 37-save shutout. Both these performances followed an overtime loss the night prior. 
It is no secret these two sit on the cusp between the NHL and AHL and big performances at their current team help them inch closer to their next call-up. Coronato overtook the team scoring lead after their last game as he now has a two-point lead on the previous leader, Ben Jones. Now, a four-point night isn’t a regular standard for Coronato but with 25 points in 21 games in this league, he’s going to be on the scouting report for the opposition. 
This series kicks off on Monday afternoon for a 1:00 p.m. MT puck drop. The team has already announced this game is in high demand and they are opening up tickets to the second level as a result. This will be another back-to-back for Calgary with game two taking place on Tuesday evening at 6:00 p.m. MT. You can catch these games live, stream them on AHL.tv or follow along with the Fan960 radio broadcast. FlamesNation contributors Mike Gould and I will have updates on X (formerly Twitter).

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