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The Albany River Rats are an ice hockey team in the American Hockey League. They play in Albany, New Yorkmarker at the Times Union Centermarker.

History

The team was founded as the Capital District Islanders (playing at Houston Field Housemarker on campus at RPImarker located across the Hudson River in Troy, New Yorkmarker) in 1990 but changed their name when the New Jersey Devils sold their old affiliate the Utica Devils to become linked with this team.

In 1998, Walter Robb purchased the franchise from original owner Al Lawrence, allowing the franchise to remain in Albany. Garen Szablewski has served as CEO and President of the River Rats for 15 years since 1994.

The Rats' glory days came in the mid to late 1990s making seven consecutive playoff appearances, won 2 division titles, and took home the AHL's Calder Cup in 1995. Also in 1995, their parent club, the New Jersey Devils won the Stanley Cup.

However, wins have declined since the 1997–98 season, the last time Albany won a playoff series. The River Rats finished last in each of the 6 seasons between 2000–01 and 2005–06. A new affiliation with the Carolina Hurricanes beginning in the 2006–07 season brought hope of a return to AHL glory not seen in Albany since the late '90s.

On March 22, 2006, the Devils announced that they were cutting ties with the River Rats after the 2005–06 AHL season, as the parent club announced the purchase of the Lowell Lock Monsters. Despite the move, the River Rats were not relocated. In April 2006, The Carolina Hurricanes signed a one year agreement (with the option to renew for two additional) with the River Rats to be their farm affiliate. Later on, Carolina was joined by the Colorado Avalanche in a one-year partnership agreement. On February 22, 2007, the Carolina Hurricanes and Albany River Rats announced that their affiliation agreement had been extended through the 2008–09 season.

On April 24, 2008, the River Rats lost 2–3 to the Philadelphia Phantoms in the longest game played in AHL history. The Phantoms Ryan Potulny scored 2:58 into the fifth overtime. Albany gave up 101 shots on goal, and goaltender Michael Leighton made 98 saves.

This market was previously served by:

2009 Bus Crash

On February 19, 2009, five people were seriously injured when a bus carrying the team home from a game in Lowell struck a guard rail and rolled on its side on Interstate 90 in western Massachusetts. Nicolas Blanchard, Joe Jensen, Jonathan Paiement, Casey Borer, and the River Rats radio color commentator John Hennessy were taken to Berkshire Medical Center in Pittsfield with "serious" injuries.

Affiliates



Season-by-season results

Regular season

Season Games Won Lost Tied OTL SOL Points Goals

for
Goals

against
Standing
1993–94 80 38 34 8 84 312 315 3rd, North
1994–95 80 46 17 17 109 293 219 1st, North
1995–96 80 54 19 7 115 322 218 1st, Central
1996–97 80 38 28 9 5 90 269 231 3rd, Empire State
1997–98 80 43 20 11 6 103 290 223 1st, Empire State
1998–99 80 46 26 6 2 100 275 230 2nd, Empire State
1999–00 80 30 40 7 3 70 225 250 4th, Empire State
2000–01 80 30 40 6 4 70 216 262 6th, Mid-Atlantic
2001–02 80 14 42 12 12 52 172 271 4th, East
2002–03 80 25 37 11 7 68 197 235 5th, East
2003–04 80 21 39 11 9 62 182 257 7th, East
2004–05 80 29 38 6 7 71 198 248 7th, East
2005–06 80 25 48 4 3 57 206 278 7th, Atlantic
2006–07 80 37 36 4 3 81 246 258 4th, East
2007–08 80 43 30 3 4 93 213 198 3rd, East
2008–09 80 33 40 3 4 73 219 258 7th, East


Playoffs

Season 1st round 2nd round 3rd round Finals
1993–94 L, 1-4, PORT
1994–95 W, 4-0, ADIR W, 4-2, PROV -- W, 4-0, FRED
1995–96 L, 1-3, CORN
1996–97 W, 3-1, ADIR W, 4-3, ROCH L, 1-4, HAM
1997–98 W, 3-0, ADIR W, 4-0, HAM L, 2-4, PHIL
1998–99 L, 3-2, HAM
1999–00 L, 3-2, ROCH
2000–01 Out of playoffs
2001–02 Out of playoffs
2002–03 Out of playoffs
2003–04 Out of playoffs
2004–05 Out of playoffs
2005–06 Out of playoffs
2006–07 L, 1-4, HER
2007–08 L, 3-4 PHIL
2008–09 Out of playoffs


Team records

Single season

Goals: 46 Jeff Williams (1998-99)
Assists: 63 Keith Aucoin (2006-07)
Points: 99 Keith Aucoin (2006-07)
Penalty Minutes: 348 Matt Ruchty (1994-95)
GAA: 2.10 Michael Leighton (2007-08)
SV%: .931 Michael Leighton (2007-08)


Career

Career goals: 155 Steve Brule
Career assists: 214 Steve Brule
Career points: 369 Steve Brule
Career penalty minutes: 1197 Rob Skrlac
Career goaltending wins: 77 Peter Sidorkiewicz
Career shutouts: 8 Peter Sidorkiewicz
Career games: 423 Jiri Bicek


Current roster

As of July 9, 2009. Data taken from AHL website.

Goaltenders


# align=left Player Catches Date of birth Place of birth

31 Mike Murphy R January 15, 1989 Inverary, ON, Canada

35 Justin Peters L August 30, 1986 Blyth, ON, Canada


Defensemen
# align=left Player Shoots Date of birth Place of birth

2 Jamie McBain R February 25th, 1988 Edina, MN, USA

3 Benn Olson L April 29, 1987 Port McNeil, BC, Canada

4 Zack Fitzgerald L May 16, 1985 Two Harbors, MN, USA

7 Brett Carson R November 29, 1985 Regina, SK, Canada

27 Jonathan Paiement L March 7th, 1985 Montreal, QC, Canada

28 Casey Borer L July 28, 1985 Minneapolis, MN, USA

33 Bryan Rodney R April 22, 1984 London, ON, Canada

34 Brett Bellemore R June 25, 1988 Windsor, ON, Canada


Forwards
# align=left Player Position Shoots Date of birth Place of birth

8 Nick Dodge C R May 1, 1986 Oakville, ON, Canada

9 Drayson Bowman LW L March 8th, 1989 Grand Rapids, MI, USA

10 Mike Angelidis C L June 27, 1985 Unionville, ON, Canada

11 Zach Boychuk C L October 4, 1989 Airdrie, AB, Canada

12 Steven Goertzen RW R May 26, 1984 Stony Plain, AB, Canada

14 Matthew Pistilli RW R October 7, 1988 Montreal, QC, Canada

15 Stefan Chaput C L March 11, 1988 Montreal, QC, Canada

17 Jerome Samson RW R September 4, 1987 Greenfield Park, QC, Canada

22 Harrison Reed RW R January 18, 1988 Newmarket, ON, Canada

23 Brandon Sutter C R February 14, 1989 Huntington, NY, USA

24 Pat Dwyer RW R June 22, 1983 Great Falls, MT, USA

25 Chris Terry C L April 7, 1989 Brampton, ON, CAN

26 Nicolas Blanchard LW L May 31, 1987 Granby, QC, Canada

36 Brad Herauf LW L August 24, 1982 Regina, SK, Canada


Staff
Title align=left Staff member
Head coach Jeff Daniels

Assistant coach Geordie Kinnear

Head trainer Brian Maddox


References

  1. [1]


External links




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