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‘I don’t really think it matters who we play’: Calgary Wranglers close to clinching a playoff spot

With their big 2-0 shutout victory over the division-leading Coachella Valley Thunderbirds on Wednesday night, the Calgary Wranglers pulled to within three points of second place in the Pacific Division.

As good as that sounds, the Wranglers are only four points up on Abbotsford for the seventh and final playoff spot in the tight Pacific.

Calgary Wrangler captain Brett Sutter says the team isn’t worried about who it will meet in the 2024 AHL playoffs

Captain Brett Sutter says it doesn’t matter who they face in the playoffs.

“I think you want to put yourself in the best possible position,” said the veteran forward.

“You know, I don’t think it really matters who we play in our division.  I think it’s pretty deep from top to bottom.  But like you say it’s more about us getting our game in order and knowing what it takes to be successful and I think we’re starting to find that niche in our game.”


The Wranglers take on the last-place San Jose Barracuda at the Scotiabank Saddledome on Friday afternoon.

And there’s a possibility they could clinch a playoff spot with a victory.

Forward Mitch McLain says it would be nice to get it done.

“It’s exciting,” he said.

“When you come into the year you want to make the playoffs and it’s one of our goals as a team,” Sutter added. “But we just come in every day and take it one game at a time.  It’s all about winning that next game.”


There’s an exciting promotion for Friday afternoon’s game.  They’re calling it “Kids Friyay”.

Nathan MacDonald is the manager of AHL business operations.  He says they’ve ramped things up for the kids.

“We have free t-Shirts for the first 2,000 kids through the door,” he said.

“We’ve got craft pancakes, Wrangler “W” pancakes and we’ve got face painting and balloon twisting and we have a sponsored kids drawing on the concourse with a big kids activity zone.”

“And then on the way out we have the last of a series of next-gen posters that we’ll be giving out to fans that is featuring Matt Coronato this issue,” he added. “So lots of exciting things and it should be a really fun day.”


They’re almost sold out in the lower bowl and have started selling tickets in the second level of the Saddledome.

McLain says it’s always great to have a lot of kids in the stands.

“When we fill the building and especially with the kids they have a great time during the game and whatever else,” he said.

“One thing I’ve always kept in mind is I was a kid once,” McLain said, “and those guys playing were my heroes — so we have an example to set and we’re going to give them a good show that’s inspiring for them.”

The captain agrees.

“I think the kids are the ones that bring the most energy,” he said.

“So for us to hear them in the crowd screaming and having fun, that’s what brings us the most joy and you remember what it was like being that age and getting to come and have an experience like that. 

“We enjoy days like that,” Sutter added, “and hopefully tomorrow (Friday) is a good one for us.”

Puck drops between the Wranglers and Barracuda is a little after 1:00 pm on Friday. 

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