This afternoon, it was announced that defenseman Lawrence Pilut and goaltender Jonas Johansson would represent the Rochester Amerks in the 2020 AHL All-Star Game in Ontario, CA. Both players have made significant contributions to help push the Amerks to first place in the North Division with 44 points in 32 games.
For the 24-year-old Pilut, this will be his second trip in as many years. With 20 points in 27 games this season, he ranks second on the team behind veteran blueliner Zach Redmond (who represented the Amerks as an All-Star last season). It will be interesting to see if Pilut remains in the minors leading up to the event. It’s been speculated that he’ll be receiving his first call-up of the season sooner rather than later.
Johansson’s emergence as a top goaltender in the AHL has come as a surprise to many fans of the Buffalo Sabres. In his first full season with the team, the 2014 third-round pick has posted a save-percentage of .933 through 15 starts (good for second in the league). In split duty with Andrew Hammond, the Amerks netminders, paired with an elite defensive corps, have allowed the fewest goals against (74) in the AHL.
Amerks’ head coach Chris Taylor will also be at the event, serving as the bench boss for the North Division team. In his third season behind the bench in Rochester, he’ll look to finally get his squad past the first round of the Calder Cup Playoffs in 2020.
Also appearing in the event are former-Sabres Nathan Gerbe of the Cleveland Monsters, and Matt Moulson of the Hershey Bears. Moulson will serve as captain of the Atlantic Division team.