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Tonight’s Matchup: After San Jose downed Bakersfield 5-1 on Saturday night at Rabobank Arena, the two clubs collide again for the second game of a home and road on Wednesday at SAP Center at San Jose. A season ago, the Barracuda went 6-3-0-1 against the Oilers affiliate and 4-1-0-0 at SAP Center at San Jose.
Last Time Out: Josef Korenar made 37 of 38 saves and Jayden Halbgewach, Max Letunov, Cavan Fitzgerald, Nick DeSimone and Francis Perron scored for San Jose in the 5-1 win at Bakersfield. The Barracuda ended the night going one-for-six on the man-advantage, while Bakersfield went zero-for-one, with its only goal coming off the stick of Josh Currie in the final period at full strength.
Scoring in Bunches: A season ago, the Barracuda finished dead last in goals scored (186). Through the first weekend, San Jose’s nine goals through two games ranks them atop the Pacific Division and T-fifth overall in the AHL. The Barracuda are also tied for first in the league with just two goals allowed in their first two games.
Youth Movement: The Barracuda opened up the 2018-19 season with 10 rookies and the AHL’s youngest roster, averaging 22.7 years old. Just 13 players on San Jose’s 25-man opening night roster skated for the Barracuda a season ago.
Currie For Three: On Saturday, Bakersfield’s Josh Currie potted his clubs only goal and now has three points (one goal, two assists) in his first two games of the season. In 32 career games against San Jose, Currie has 26 points (15 goals, 11 assists). Currie netted a pair of hat tricks against San Jose last year and has recorded three of his four career four hat-tricks against the ‘Cuda.
Familiar Face: After failing to reach the Calder Cup playoffs in its first three years as members of the AHL’s Pacific Division, the Edmonton Oilers relieved Gerry Flemming of his duties in Bakersfield and appointed former Sharks and Oilers assistant Jay Woodcroft as the head coach of the Condors this offseason. Woodcroft was an assistant under Todd McLellan with the San Jose Sharks for seven years before following McLellan to Edmonton the last three seasons.
Trading Up: On June 14, Sharks GM Doug Wilson traded forward Adam Helewka to the Arizona Coyotes in exchange for 6-5, 235-pound defenseman Kyle Wood. On September 13, as a part of the Erik Karlsson trade, Francis Perron was acquired from the Ottawa Senators. Thus far, the two have combined for six points (two goals, four assists) in two games and a plus-seven rating.
National Pride: With the offseason signings of Vincent Praplan (Switzerland) and Lukas Radil (Czech Republic), along with the return of Captain John McCarthy, San Jose’s opening night roster was comprised of three different skaters who competed at the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea.