GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) The Grand Rapids Griffins return to the American Hockey League's Calder Cup playoffs for the first time since 2009. The Griffins open the Western Conference best-of-five first round at Houston with games Friday and Sunday before returning to Van Andel Arena for game three Wednesday. Games four and and five would also be in Grand Rapids if necessary.
The Griffins are the number three seed in the Western Conference playoffs. "It's nice that we had such a good season and that it's the best this organization has had in a long time," says Landon Ferraro, who was third on the team with 47 regular season points. "But it doesn't really mean anything if we lose in the first round."
The Griffins went 3-2 against the Aeros in the regular season including two road wins. "We've had decent success against them," says first-year head coach Jeff Blashill. "They beat us twice in our building here, we've had success down there. They're a real good team, they play very good defense. They have very fast and skilled forwards. We're going to have to go and execute. It's two real close teams. Whichever team executes better is the one that's going to have success."