TOLEDO, Ohio — For the first time since June 1, 2019, there will be playoff hockey inside the Huntington Center.
The Walleye ended that season in heartbreak, losing in the Kelly Cup Finals. The next year, a global pandemic shut down the season just before the playoffs were about to start, and last year was wiped out completely.
All of that leads us to this year. The Walleye are the best team in the ECHL. For the third time in franchise history, Toledo won the Brabham Cup, which is awarded to the regular season champion.
If you’re unfamiliar with the 2021-22 Walleye, here are three players to watch during this playoff run:
- Brandon Hawkins is the teams leading goal scorer. He’s a former BGSU Falcon. He tied for the most goals scored in the ECHL this year with 35. That number is also good for second all-time in Walleye history.
- Team Captain TJ Hensick was named All-ECHL First Team this year. He was tied for second in the ECHL in points with 78. He was also the teams representative at the ECHL all-star game.
- Goaltender Billy Christopolous was fifth in the ECHL in Goals Against Average. He’s been a steady force between the pipes all year long.
The Walleye begin their postseason run with a series against the Cincinnati Cyclones.