WEST VALLEY CITY The Utah Grizzlies spent six of their first eight games of the 2007-08 ECHL season on the road, winning one of the six. But tonight they return to the E Center, where they are 2-0, to open a three-game homestand against 5-2-0 Victoria.
The Salmon Kings, 1-1 on the road, bring a four-game win streak and the league's top power play; scoring co-leader Milan Gajic (14 points); and leading goal-scorer, Ash Goldie (eight goals), to West Valley today, Saturday and Monday, all starting times at 7 p.m.
The Salmon Kings score on a league-best 28.6 percent of their power plays and are in the middle of the pack in penalty killing. Utah is last in penalty killing and 22nd of 25 teams in power-play percentage (10.9).
Utah and Victoria split a pair of preseason games in Utah last month.
Utah could be without the No. 5 scorer in team history. Ryan Kinasewich was called up in the past week to the AHL Bridgeport Sound Tigers, who are affiliates of the New York Islanders, as are the Grizzlies.
He had a game-winning goal in the first of his two games so far there.
Leading Grizzly scorer Scott Burt (11 points) also was called up to Bridgeport this week his first-ever callup but was returned Thursday after being +1 in his first game Wednesday. Burt had a six-game scoring streak for Utah when he was recalled. He had one power-play goal and the team's only short-handed goal plus two power-play assists for Utah, which has just five man-advantage goals.
Tonight the Grizzlies still may be without captain Travis Rycroft, who has a painful "mid-body muscle pull" and missed part of a game on Halloween and both games last weekend just the third and fourth games he's missed since joining Utah three seasons ago. Defenseman Ian Forbes and forward Kazuma Takahashi remain out with injuries.
With five points, center Micheal Haley is third in Utah scoring. Defenseman Andy Sertich has a goal and three assists in his last two games.Six of Ash Goldie's goals came on the power play, and Wes Goldie leads the league in short-handed goals with two. Ash Goldie is the ECHL player of the week after seven goals, two game-winners, in the Kings' 3-0 series with Bakersfield last weekend.