AHL Eastern Conference Final Game 6 Preview | Cleveland Monsters vs. Hershey Bears

Photo by Cleveland Monsters/AHL

Not Done Yet! (2)

In the first 3 games of this series, the Hershey Bears managed to win 2 games in overtime and dominated Game 3. However, the momentum has shifted in favor of the Cleveland Monsters. In Game 4, the Monsters secured a narrow 3-2 win, forcing a Game 5 at home, where they convincingly defeated the Bears with a score of 5-1. Cleveland’s goaltender, Jet Greaves, has been the standout performer, making an impressive 33 saves out of 34 shots in Game 5 against a strong Hershey offense. In addition to outstanding goaltending, Cleveland’s defensive play has been exceptional, with solid checking and effective limiting of Hershey’s offensive zone time. With their backs against the wall at home, Cleveland has responded well, putting pressure on the Hershey Bears, which now have a 3-2 series lead heading into a crucial Game 6 on Monday.

Big Game 6 in Hershey

A crucial game is scheduled to take place on Monday night at 7:00 PM at the Giant Center in Hershey, PA. The Cleveland Monsters aim to push for a Game 7 on Wednesday in the AHL ECF. After being down 3-0 in the series, the Monsters have adopted a one-game-at-a-time approach and have secured two consecutive wins. Hershey needs to regain control of the offensive zone possession, as they have struggled in the past two games. Their power-play has also been ineffective and they must revitalize it to advance to the Calder Cup Final for the second consecutive year.

Cleveland needs to maintain their recent performance, especially with their potential future NHL goalie Jet Greaves. The Monsters should continue to pressure Hershey’s goaltender, Hunter Shepard, who had a challenging Game 5 and was pulled from the game. It is likely that he will start on Monday night, and the Monsters must aim to undermine his confidence once again by exerting immense pressure around the net. Solid defensive play is also crucial, given the speed and potency of Hershey’s offense, as demonstrated in the first 3 games of the series.

The question remains: will Cleveland carry their momentum into Hershey and force a Game 7, or will Hershey shut them down and advance to the Finals?

Players to Watch (Cleveland):

Josh Dunne: 7 Goals, 4 Assists (11 Points) – 2024 Calder Cup Playoffs
Justin Pearson: 2 Goals, 9 Assists (11 Points) – 2024 Calder Cup Playoffs
Jet Greaves: 7-4 Record, 25 GA, 2.19 GAA, 0.927 Save % – 2024 Calder Cup Playoffs

Players to Watch (Hershey):

Hendrix Lapierre: 4 Goals, 9 assists (13 Points) – 2024 Calder Cup Playoffs
Ethen Frank: 9 Goals, 3 Assists (12 Points) – 2024 Calder Cup Playoffs
Hunter Shepard: 9-3 Record, 26 GA, 2.18 GAA, 0.917 Save % – 2024 Calder Cup Playoffs

Where to Listen:

Cleveland (Away) Audio: Fox Sports 1350 The Gambler – All Bets Are On (iheart.com)
Hershey (Home) Audio: ♫ Fox Sports 1460 | Harrisburg – All Sports. All the Time. (iheart.com)

Winners to Face Coachella Valley

The Coachella Valley Firebirds emerged victorious in 5 games over the Milwaukee Admirals in the AHL Western Conference Finals. They will now take a well-deserved break while waiting for the winner of the Eastern Conference Finals. Will they face the Hershey Bears in the Calder Cup Finals for a second year in a row, or will they face a new opponent in the Cleveland Monsters?

Matthew Buhrmann

Writer at Inside the Rink l Covering Cincinnati Cyclones l Student @uofcincy l @Mbuhrmann61 on socials

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