By Jim Byers, on 04/24/2012

Houston Aeros (8) at Oklahoma City Barons (1)
Calder Cup Playoffs |  Series “E” Western Conference Quarterfinals Game 4 | OKC leads 2-1
April 24, 2012, 7 pm CDT  | Cox Convention Center, Oklahoma City, OK
Broadcast: KXY 96.1 FM

TONIGHT: The Barons host the Houston Aeros (Minnesota Wild) in the fourth game of an opening-round, best-of-5 Western Conference quarterfinal series. OKC won both games in Houston, 5-0 on Thursday and 4-1 on Friday, before Houston prevailed 1-0 on Sunday at the Cox Center. Sunday’s game marked Houston’s first regulation win over the Barons in 2011-12 spanning 11 games, regular season and playoff. OKC is the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference with 99 points during the regular season, while the Aeros earned a berth on closing day as the No. 8 seed.

SERIES SNIPPETS: OKC has out-shot Houston 116-55 combined through the first 3 games. It’s the highest shot total by the Barons over a 3-game span this season. The Barons are 2-for-14 on the power play this series, but are 0-for-10 since their most recent power play in Friday’s second period. OKC is 9-for-9 on the penalty kill, one of 3 AHL teams at 100 percent to date in the playoffs. The Barons’ 48 shots in Game 1 were the second-most in club history, counting regular season and playoffs. The only game featuring more was a 51-shot, 7-6 shootout win over Toronto Nov. 7, 2010 at the Cox Center, when Linus Omark scored 5 goals. The Barons had at least 1 goal in each of the series’ first 6 periods until being shut out on Sunday.

DANIS VS. HOUSTON: Yann Danis has played every minute of the regular season series and playoffs against the Aeros. He went 7-0-1 with 2 shutouts, a 1.32 goals-against average and .946 save percentage in the regular season, allowing 11 goals and making 193 saves on 204 shots. Adding in the playoffs to date, Danis is 9-1-1 against the Aeros in 2011-12 with a 1.15 GAA and .950 save percentage.

DANIS THE TOP GOALIE: Yann Danis is this season’s winner of the Aldege “Baz” Bastien Memorial Award as the AHL’s outstanding goaltender for the 2011-12 season, as voted by AHL coaches, players and members of the media in each of the league’s 30 cities. Danis’ other accolades this season have included a scoreless period in the AHL All-Star Classic, the first by a goalie in 7 years, and his being named a first-team AHL All-Star. Danis finished second in the AHL in goals-against average at 2.07, trailing only Toronto’s Ben Scrivens (2.04). Danis tied for fifth in wins (26), tied for second in shutouts (5) and tied for eighth in save percentage (.924).

SHUTOUT TALK: Sunday’s 1-0 loss was the fourth shutout OKC has been involved in during its brief, 9-game playoff history in the AHL. The Barons blanked Houston 5-0 in Game 1 of this series. OKC and Hamilton traded 2-0 decisions in last year’s opening-round, best-of-7 series. Last season the Barons did not take part in a 1-0 game. This season, the Barons split 4 games in the regular season that ended 1-0.

GOOD OMENS: By scoring 5 and 4 goals in each of the first 2 games, the Barons improved their combined regular season and playoff record to 23-0-0-0 when scoring 4 or more in a game. Ryan Keller’s 2-goal game on Friday was the 18th by a Baron between the playoffs and regular season. A Baron has not had a hat trick in 2011-12. When the Barons received a goal from a defenseman this season they went 15-2-0-2 and when Philippe Cornet lit the lamp the team went 18-1-0-0 in the regular season.

POWER TRIPS: The Barons went 27-1-2-4 when scoring at least 1 power play goal during the regular season. When they tallied 2 or more in a game, they were 7-0-0-1. When held without a power play goal, the Barons were 18-21-2-1. In this series, OKC won both games where it scored a power play goal.

Series results:
Date        Opp.     Result     OKC Goalie (GA,SV)   Opp. Goalie            Attn.
April 19    @ Hou   W, 5-0      Danis (0, 14)                   Hackett (L)/Brodeur   3,158
April 20    @ Hou   W, 4-1      Dans (1, 19)                   Hackett (L)/Brodeur   4,756
April 22    Hou       L, 0-1       Danis (1, 20)                   Brodeur (0, 31)          2,859

Next 5 games (all times Central):
Date        Opp.          Site                                Time   Broadcast
April 25*   Houston      Cox Center                      7:00     KXY 96.1 FM
* If necessary                                                                          

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