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Logan Mailloux’s magic leads London to their fourth win in a row

A natural hat trick is tough to come by.

A natural hat trick that happens with three consecutive power play goals is rare.

A natural hat trick with three power play goals that is completed with a lacrosse shot is a feat unto its own.

Logan Mailloux made it happen Saturday night in Erie.

Mailloux’s deluge in the final 20 minutes helped to lift the London Knights to a 5-1 victory over the Erie Otters at Erie Insurance Arena on Saturday night.

Toss in the fact that it was Star Wars night and things just seem to have been that much more surreal.

Mailloux scored at 8:03, 16:26 and 17:28 of the final period. He now has four goals in his past two games and 17 on the year.

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Ryan Winterton helped to open the scoring in the first period when he picked off a puck in centre ice and zipped a pass ahead to Easton Cowan at the Otters blue line. Cowan skated into the Erie zone on the left side and snapped his 13th goal of the season over the glove of Nolan Lalonde just two minutes and 18 seconds into the game. The goal gave Cowan his 30th point on the year.

The Otters goal came short-handed at 12:16 of the first when Pano Fimis stole a puck deep in London territory and spun a pass in front to Noah Sedore to make it 1-1.

Sean McGurn broke the tie in the second period when he put on an exhibition in determination. The London co-captain got to a loose puck in centre ice on a penalty kill, poked it around a defender and somehow managed to control the bounces while fending off whacks and hacks from two Erie pursuers all the way to the Otter net. By that point McGurn had been fouled enough that a penalty was upcoming against the Otters but the call was never needed because McGurn finished the job by putting a shot past Nolan Lalonde for his 19th goal of the season. That gave the Knights a 2-1 lead.

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Knights goalie Zach Bowen made 24 saves for his tenth consecutive win. Bowen is 10-1 on the year.

London outshot Erie 29-25.

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Stan Butler made his coaching debut for the Otters against the Knights. Butler was hired on Jan 26. He has 737 career OHL victories.

All-Star weekend in the NHL

Former Knights Matthew Tkachuk and Mitch Marner were reunited and led the way at the 2023 NHL All-Star 3-on-3 tournament.

Tkachuk had five points in Team Atlantic’s semi-final victory and then added another goal and two assists in the final as they defeated Nathan MacKinnon and Team Central 7-5. Marner had three assists and Red Wings captain Dylan Larkin recorded a hat trick for Team Atlantic.

Tkachuk and Marner won the Memorial Cup playing in London, Ont., in 2016

Londoner Nick Suzuki won the Pitch ‘n Puck event that put players on the golf course with hockey pucks and hockey sticks. They had to go from tee to green using a white puck and were then able to switch to golf balls from there.

Suzuki tapped in for birdie like he was finding a teammate back door at the net and walked away with the inaugural title for an event that may or may not ever happen again. Brock Nelson edged Londoner and former Knight Nazem Kadri in the final of the Accuracy Shooting event and former Knight Mitch Marner was a runner-up in the Breakaway Contest.

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Milestone watch

London Knights head coach Dale Hunter is 12 wins away from 900 career victories. Hunter is just 21 wins away from tying the late Bert Templeton for 2nd place all-time. Former Ottawa 67’s head coach Brian Kilrea is the winningest coach in OHL history. Kilrea amassed 1194 victories in his career.

Knights goalie Brett Brochu is just two wins away from tying Gene Chiarello for second place in all-time wins by a London goalie. The OHL began tracking goalie wins in the 1979-80 season. Brochu’s three saves in the shootout against the Kingston Frontenacs on Jan. 28 gave the overage netminder 81 career wins. Brochu is 11 wins away from Michael Houser for top spot on the Knights list.

Former London forward Patrick Kane is 25 points away from 800 in his career.

Up next

London will host the Flint Firebirds on Monday, Feb. 6 for Mitch Marner Bobblehead night.

The first 2,000 fans inside Budweiser Gardens will receive a Mitch Marner bobblehead.

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The Knights and Firebirds have split the two games they have played against one another this year with each team winning i the other’s team’s building.

London will host Kitchener on Wednesday, Feb. 8 for the Don Brankley Hall of Fame induction game that will honour three new members of the hall: Dan Maloney, Rick Green and Dennis Wideman.

Coverage of both games will begin at 6:30 on 980 CFPL, at http://www.980cfpl.ca and on the Radioplayer Canada app.

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