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Sunday Funday: On Sunday, the Barracuda collide with the Ontario Reign for the sixth of eight meetings on the season. San Jose’s only win against the Reign this year came on November 18 at SAP Center (1-0). The Reign have points in five straight games (4-0-1-0) after a 5-4 overtime loss at San Diego on Friday.
Deadline Deals: Last Sunday the Sharks traded the AHL’s Top Goaltender of the Year from a season ago, Troy Grosenick, along with Brandon Bollig to the Nashville Predators in exchange for a sixth-round draft pick in 2018. On Monday, the Sharks continued making deals as they shipped the AHL’s Rookie of the Year from a year ago, Danny O’Regan, along with a pair of conditional draft choices to the Buffalo Sabres for Evander Kane.
Rudy Rocking: Rookie All-Star Rudolfs Balcers has three multi-goal games in his last 10 and now ranks T-13th in the AHL among first-year players in points (34), 14th in assists (20), and T-17th in goals (14). The Latvia native leads the Barracuda in points, T-1st in assists, goals, T-first in power-play goals and T-first in game-winning goals.
Mac Is Back: On Friday, San Jose Barracuda captain John McCarthy returned to the Cuda lineup after skating in five games for Team USA at the 2018 Winter Olympics. McCarthy is in his ninth year of pro hockey, appearing in 88 games with the San Jose Sharks, and 454 games of his 479 AHL career between the Worcester Sharks and San Jose Barracuda. Over the last two seasons, McCarthy had missed just two games with the Barracuda. McCarthy is first on the Barracuda in plus/minus (+6) and T-first in power-play goals (6) this season.
All-Star Antoine: In his fourth professional season, and first within the Sharks organization, AHL All-Star Antoine Bibeau is 15-11-2 in 29 games played with a 2.22 goals-against average and a .923 save percentage. The native of Victoriaville, Quebec is T-sixth in the AHL in shutouts (3), fifth in goals-against average and 7th in save percentage. Friday’s win was Bibeau’s first in his last five starts.
Sommer-Time: San Jose Barracuda Head Coach and Bay Area native Roy Sommer collected the 700th AHL win of his career on Dec. 3 at Bakersfield (2-1). Sommer is the first coach in the 82-year history of the American Hockey League to reach 700 coaching wins. In 2015-16, Sommer surpassed Fred “Bun” Cook as the AHL’s all-time leader in wins and collected his first A.R. Pieri Memorial Award as AHL Coach of the Year in 2016-17. Sommer, who’s in his AHL record 20th season behind the bench for the top affiliate of the San Jose Sharks, coached his 1,500th game in the AHL on Dec. 8 at SAP Center against Tucson.