2023 Central Division Semifinals PreviewBy: Manitoba Moose Staff | Published: April 25th 2023
The Manitoba Moose begin their quest for the Calder Cup on Friday, April 28 on home ice at Canada Life Centre. The Moose and Admirals clash in the best-of-five Central Division Semifinals.
Game 1: Friday, April 28, 7 p.m. CT – Canada Life Centre – TICKETS
Game 2: Sunday, April 30, 2 p.m. CT – Canada Life Centre – TICKETS
Game 3: Wednesday, May 3, 7 p.m. CT – UWM Panther Arena
Game 4*: Friday, May 5, 7 p.m. CT – UWM Panther Arena
Game 5*: Saturday, May 6, 6 p.m. CT – UWM Panther Arena
Experience the Calder Cup Playoffs:
Live at Canada Life Centre
Tickets for Moose home games are available at MooseHockey.com/TICKETS. 2023 Calder Cup Playoff ticket packages, which guarantee seats for all Moose home games, are available at MooseHockey.com/PLAYOFFS. Fans are encouraged to wear their playoff whites. Check out Jets Gear at Canada Life Centre, as well as TrueNorthShop.com, for limited edition Moose Playoff apparel and get loud with Moose-branded clappers handed out at home games.
Moose on 680 CJOB and AHLTV
Listen to coverage of every Central Division Semifinals game on CJOB.com/sports and the Winnipeg Jets App. Inaddition, Game 1 and Game 2 will be carried live on 680 CJOB. You can also watch all the road and home action live with a subscription or day pass to AHLTV. Coverage begins 30 minutes before Game 1 and 15 minutes prior to puck drop for Game 2 through Game 5.
Playoff Series Primer:
The Manitoba-Milwaukee Matchup
The Moose and Admirals met eight times during the regular season. Manitoba accumulated a 4-2-1-1 record against Milwaukee. Alex Limoges (2G, 5A) and Ville Heinola (7A) both led the Moose with seven points against the Admirals. Wyatt Bongiovanni paced the antlered ones with five goals against their divisional rival. On the other side, Luke Evangelista led all skaters in the season series with 10 assists in eight games against the Moose. The Moose power play scored on seven of its 21 attempts for a 33.3 percent success rate. Meanwhile, the penalty kill stopped 22 of 27 Milwaukee man-advantages to operate at 81.5 percent.
The teams previously clashed in last year’s Division Semifinals. Milwaukee captured the series in five games. The clubs also faced off in 12 regular season meetings during the 2021-22 campaign meaning the Moose and Admirals have battled 25 times the past two seasons coming into this series.
The Moose lineup features two 50-point players for the first time since the 2018-19 season. Alex Limoges led the team with 54 points (20G, 34A) in 63 games. Jansen Harkins picked up three points in the final game of the season to close with 50 points (25G, 25A) in 44 games. Limoges posted the most points by a Moose player since the 2018-19 season. Meanwhile Harkins is the first player to record at least 25 goals and 25 assists in a season since Buddy Robinson in the 2017-18 campaign. Harkins’ 1.14 points per game average ranked seventh in the league among players with at least 30 games played.
Leon Gawanke enjoyed a historic campaign for the Moose, becoming the first defenceman in franchise history to record 20 goals in a season. The Berlin, Germany product’s 20 tallies also tied him for the league-lead among defenders. Gawanke finished the season with 45 points (20G, 25A), to lead Moose blueliners for the third time in his four seasons with the club. Manitoba featured three defencemen with at least 35 points as Declan Chisholm wrapped with 43 points (5G, 38A) in 59 games and Ville Heinola finished with 37 points (4G, 33A) in 48 outings.
The Moose set a new franchise record this season for power play productivity. Manitoba scored 53 power play goals on 233 attempts for a 22.7 percent success rate on the man-advantage. The antlered ones’ franchise-high power play ranked fifth in the AHL and second in the division. Meanwhile, the opposing Admirals held the top power play in the league, operating at 24.6 percent. Milwaukee scored 56 goals on 228 opportunities. The Admirals had the least number of power plays in the AHL this season, while the Moose the third-least.
Back for More
The Moose and Admirals clashed in the 2022 Central Division Semifinals with Milwaukee taking the set in five games. This year’s Moose roster features a total of 17 players who were on the club’s 2022 playoff roster. Nine players dressed in the series, while eight did not. Meanwhile, the Admirals have 11 players who were on the roster for that second round matchup. Six participated in the best-of-five series, while five didn’t dress. Moose defenceman Declan Chisholm led all the returning players with seven points (2G, 5A) in five games. Cole Schneider paced the returning Admirals with four points (1G, 3A) in five games.
For more information on the Central Division Semifinals, visit MooseHockey.com and follow along through the Manitoba Moose social media channels on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and Youtube.