Connolly, Brett

Bolts Send Three Top Prospects Back to Juniors

TAMPA BAY – The Tampa Bay Lightning reduced their preseason roster by three today, Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced. The Lightning now have 49 players remaining on their exhibition roster as the team prepares for the final contest on its four-game road trip tomorrow night in Calgary.

The three players who have been reassigned to their junior clubs are as follows:

RW Carter Ashton -- Regina (WHL)
RW Brett Connolly -- Prince George (WHL)
RW Richard Panik -- Belleville (OHL)

NHL Preseason Game Night: 9/23/10 Lightning at Oilers

Yeah, we at BoltProspects always liked Magnus Paajarvi in his draft year.

TB-2
EDM-5

Dan Ellis allowed 5 goals on 21 shots for the loss. Ugly stat line.

First Period
TB 4:33, Jones 1 (Purcell, Persson)
EDM 15:09, Paajarvi 1 (Belle, Plante)
EDM 18:34, Cogliano 1 (PP) (Foster, Paajarvi)

Second Period
EDM 6:50, Paajarvi 2 (PP) (Penner, Plante)

Third Period
EDM 7:57, Hall 1 (PP) (unassisted)
EDM 9:52, Paajarvi 3 (SH) (Foster)
TB 17:19, Ashton 1 (PP) (Wright, Clark)

Not an entirely surprising outcome, I suppose, considering Edmonton had most of its regular skaters going against the Lightning's lower liners, AHLers, and prospects. The only thing really concerning is to allow 5 goals on 21 shots in that scenario. Still, I wouldn't read much into tonight unless they get blown out in Calgary against the Fighting Feasters on Saturday with most of the regulars in.

Carter Ashton had 1 goal and was +1 with 1 shot and a slashing minor in 13:26. I'm of the opinion it would behoove the Lightning to, at the very least, use the 9 game tryout on Ashton. If he can stick on the team and develop over the course of the year, he could give the Lightning a lot of roster flexibility in February.

Brett Connolly was even with 1 shot in 12:13. I think he'll get a contract and then be ushered away to Prince George fairly soon.

Radko Gudas was even with 1 shot in 13:51. I doubt he makes it past the first round of cuts. He needs to get stronger and he needs some seasoning in Norfolk.

Johan Harju was -1 with 1 shot in 13:20. He got more ice time than the 9:30 Linus Omark got for the Oilers. I expect him to be on the bubble another week.

Blair Jones was -1 in 12:53. He could not duplicate what he did against the Hawks, which is the story of Blair's pro career. Probably on the bubble another week.

Vladimir Mihalik was -1 with 1 shot and a hooking minor in 16:43. He might survive the first round of cuts, but I doubt he survives the second.

Niklas Persson had 1 assist and was +1 with 2 shots in 16:09. Niklas seems to be on track to make the team. In fact, he might be the first of the bubble guys to move into the safe column.

Dana Tyrell was even with 2 shots in 14:02. He'll stay on the bubble another week, I think.

Michael Vernace was -1 with 1 shot in 22:02. He got a ton of ice time given Boucher's familiarity with him, but he was awful, by all accounts.

Box score from Yahoo! Sports.

Barberio, Giliati Score in Team Black Shootout Win

2008 draft pick Mark Barberio scored an unassisted goal 40 seconds into the 2nd half of Sunday's training camp scrimmage to give Team Black a 2-0 lead. Team Black had posted the only marker in the 1st half as 2010 1st rounder Brett Connolly and Martin St. Louis assisted on a Steven Stamkos tally. Prospect Stefano Giliati, an off-season acquisition from Toronto in the Matt Lashoff trade, opened the scoring for Team White with assists from 2006 draftee Kevin Quick and Dominic Moore. Simon Gagne then netted his first goal in a Lightning jersey, the equalizer for Team White, with assists from James Wright and 2009 1st rounder Carter Ashton.

Ashton, Juraj Simek, Niklas Persson, Connolly, and Marc-Andre Pouliot all missed shootout attempts before former Bolt and training camp invitee Eric Perrin won the match for Team Black in the shootout. Mike Smith stopped 20 of 22 for Team White, while Dan Ellis stopped 18 of 20 for Team Black.

Lightning Finish Fourth at Traverse City

Despite the setback, the Lightning have proven they are back when it comes to drafting quality prospects.

TB-3
CAR-4 (OT)

Jaroslav Janus allowed 4 goals on 34 shots in the overtime loss.

First Period
TB - Butcher (Marks, Zahn) 5:42
CAR - Kennedy (PP) (Skinner, Caria) 17:59

Second Period
TB - Butcher (PP) (Janosik, Tyrell) 2:14
CAR - Shugg (Caria) 18:27

Third Period
CAR - Staal (unassisted) 7:47
TB - Wright (Connolly) 11:27

Overtime
CAR - Skinner (Dalpe) 3:36

The Lightning finished 2-1-1 in the four games they played in the tournament. James Wright finished tied for third in the tournament in scoring with 6 points, just 1 point back of Carolina's Jeff Skinner and the Rangers' Derek Stepan. The centerman had 3 goals and was +4 in 4 games. Brett Connolly finished tied for eighth in scoring with 4 points, including 2 goals.

Full Lightning tournament statistics are available here.

Box score from Pointstreak.

Detroit Experiences Panik Attack in Lightning Traverse City Win

Panik wakes up from his game one slumber.

TB-4
DET-3 (SO)

Jarsolav Janus stopped 40 of 43 shots in regulation and overtime before stopping 14 of 16 shooters in the marathon penalty shot session for the win.

First Period
TB - Panik (Wright, Zahn) 4:23
DET - Coetzee (Tatar) 5:56

Second Period
TB - Tyrell (Marks) 3:09
TB - Wright (Connolly) 7:26

Third Period
DET - Tatar (PP) (Macek, Ferraro) 2:46
DET - Parkes (Raedeke) 3:27

Overtime
NO SCORING

Shootout
TB - Panik, Panik, Butcher
DET - Smith, Ferraro

Richard Panik had a goal and scored two of the Lightning's three goals in the shootout. The Lightning's unlikely hero was tournament tryout and former Canucks draft pick Matt Butcher. Dana Tyrell also emerged to score his first goal of the tournament.

Two games in, Brett Connolly and James Wright are tied with several others for second in the tournament in scoring with 3 points each.

The Lightning will face Dallas' prospects in the final game of the round robin phase. They may end up facing 2010 first round pick Jack Campbell in the process, with the stakes being a spot in the knock-out round.

Box score from Pointstreak.

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