February may be the shortest month but it also marked the month with the most victories for the Albany Devils. On the month, the A-Devils recorded a ledger of 9-1-1-0. Riding into March with at least a point in each of their past eight contests, Albany boasts the second highest winning percentage in the American Hockey League, at .685. Although they trail the first place Toronto Marlies, the second place Devils still stand at an impressive mark of 33-13-8-0 (74 points). If the Calder Cup Playoffs began today, the A-Devils would have home ice advantage in the first round and host the rival Utica Comets.
Albany sports an AHL best 20-5-3-0 record at home. Conversely, the Devils are 13-8-5-0 on the road. On the power play, the A-Devils rank third (21.2%) in the league with the extra attacker. The A-Devils are even stronger short-handed, ranking first (88.0%) in the league on the penalty kill.
Most valuable player – Mike Sislo
Sislo has a team and league high 14 markers with the extra attacker. Sislo’s 26-tallies lead the club and the league and represent a career best. Plus, Sislo ranks fourth in the AHL with 50-points. Additionally, Sislo ranks first on the squad with those 50-points and has registered five game-winning goals on the campaign. Sislo is also riding a ten-game point streak, equaling Michael Swift’s franchise best run in 2010-11. Within that point-streak, Sislo has registered nine goals and seven helpers.
Best defenseman – Reece Scarlett
On the season, Scarlett is ninth on the club with 19-points. Scarlett picked up his game during the month of February. Scarlett accumulated a plus-nine rating. In addition, Scarlett notched a pair of goals and five helpers. Scarlett also netted an overtime game-winning goal against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Valentine’s Day.
Top rookie – Matt Lorito
Lorito remains a top AHL rookie, tied for third with 43-points. Lorito leads Albany with 31-helpers and is second with those 43-points. In February, Lorito potted two goals and chipped in six assists. Lorito’s goal at Utica, on Feb. 20, was a 3-2 game-winning tally in overtime.
Unsung hero – Paul Thompson
After a slow start, compared to last season, Thompson has picked up his game of late. Thompson has recorded a point in six of his past seven contests, totaling three goals and five helpers in that span. On the season, Thompson has eleven goals, 16-assists and 27-points. Thompson netted four goals and added five helpers in February. Thompson ended February with an exclamation point, earning first star honors at Bridgeport, recording a goal and an assist.
Best game – Feb. 14, 3-2 (OT) win against Bridgeport
Worst game – Feb. 9, 3-2 loss against Providence
Michael Gwizdala covers the New York Islanders for The Hockey Writers. Michael is also an Associate Producer at WNYT NewsChannel 13. Additionally, Michael was once a Media Relations intern for the AHL Albany River Rats. Michael is a graduate of The College of Saint Rose in Albany, NY.