Barons: Division champion Barons host Houston in final regular season home game at 7 p.m. Friday
Oklahoma City's first-round playoff opponent will be determined over the next three days — and it could very well be the Aeros.
Houston Aeros at Barons
*When: 7 p.m. Friday
*Where: Cox Center
*Tickets: Available at the Cox Center box office. Prices start at $10.
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*Radio: KXXY-FM 96.1
*Scouting report: The division champion Barons (43-21-9) play their final regular-season home game Friday against a team they could face in the first round of the American Hockey League playoffs. Houston (33-24-16) is seventh in the Western Conference and needs to remain in the top eight to qualify. Problem is, the Aeros are tied with Milwaukee, Peoria, Lake Erie and Rochester with 82 standings points. And Charlotte is one standings point behind those teams. A lot will shake out in the next three days as the AHL closes its 76th regular season. ... Oklahoma City is playing for home-ice advantage throughout the conference side of the postseason. The Barons and Toronto Marlies (44-23-7) each have 95 standings points — but the Barons' winning percentage (.651) is slightly better than the Marlies (.642). ... The Barons released rookie defenseman Mike Marcou. ... Yann Danis of the Barons was named AHL Goaltender of the Year. The All-Star has a 25-13-2 record with a 2.13 goals against average going into this weekend. The honor is officially named the Baz Bastien Award. Baz Bastien played for the Pittsburgh Hornets of the AHL from 1945-49 before suffering a career-ending eye injury. Bastien later served as general manager for the Pittsburgh Penguins.
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