In an interview for the Springfield Falcons' website, FalconsAHL.com, Springfield Head Coach Steve Stirling has announced that forward Justin Keller will return this weekend after missing over a month with a high ankle sprain. Before his injury, Keller had been playing well on a line with fellow Lightning prospects Blair Jones and Marek Kvapil and the young left winger's return could offer a shot in the arm to the team's anemic offensive attack. In 29 game this season Keller has 9 goals and 17 points with 10 penalty minutes and a -7 rating.
Erik Erlendsson of the Tampa Tribune reports:
First the tradeâ€¦
Lightning have traded Andy Delmore and Andre Deveaux to Atlanta in exchange for Stephen Baby and Kyle Wanvig. All four players will remain in the minors for now, Delmore and Deveaux to Chicago while Baby and Wanvig will be assigned to Springfield.
Of note, apparently Delmore may more than likely stay in the minors as Philadelphia is ready to swipe him off waivers if he is put on recall, so there is a good chance that Delmore wonâ€™t come back to bite the Lightning as a member of the Thrashers this season.
Dane Crowley continued his point-per-game pace since being traded to Everett when he earned an assist in the Silvertips' 4-1 win over Tri-City Wednesday night. Crowley now has 8 points in 8 games with Everett. He was plus-2 Wednesday night, which raises his plus/minus ranking with the 'Tips to plus-14. Everett, who won their 40th game last night, remained the CHL's No.1 ranked team in the rankings released Wednesday. They have been in the top-10 for all 18 weeks of the season.
Vladimir Mihalik was scoreless and minus-1 as Prince George won again on the road, beating Seattle 3-2 in overtime.
In the OHL, the All-Star Game was held Wednesday night and East beat West 13-9. No Lightning prospects were involved in the game. Hunter Tremblay, an undrafted fifth-year player for Barrie, was named player of the game for scoring 3 goals and 2 assists.
There was a comment left a few weeks back in comments regarding the whereabouts of defenseman Jan Zapletal who seemingly disappeared off the face of the earth after spending most of last season with the Vsetin organization in the Czech Republic. Well, Zapletal is playing in the Czech 2.liga (third tier) for VSKA Technika Brno where he has 1 goal and 4 points in 19 games with 28 penalty minutes and an even rating.
Defenseman Marek Posmyk, whom you might remember was acquired along with Mike Johnson in the Darcy Tucker trade many moons ago, is still playing in the Extraliaga for Ceske Budejovice (now going by the name HC Mountfield) where he has 8 goals and 12 points in 36 games with 67 penalty minutes and a -10 rating. Incidentally, looking through the Extraliga leading scorers, I can't believe Robert Reichel is still alive and playing hockey.
In Switzerland, forward Eero Somervuori is still making bank for Ambri-Piotta of the NLA where he is third on his team in scoring behind former Falcons star J.G. Trudel and former Thrasher Hnat Domenechelli. In 40 games Somervuori has 13 goals and 30 points with 16 penalty minutes.
Oh by the way, Sascha Goc is leading his team in scoring in the German DEL. In 30 games with the Hannover Scorpions the oldest of the Goc boys has 16 goals and 38 points with 87 penalty minutes and a +6 rating. I'm half expecting an e-mail from the shadowy Mr. X telling us we might want to put Goc back up on the prospects page too.
RussianProspects.com is reporting Lightning prospects Anton But and Vasily Koshechkin have been named to the Russian roster for the upcoming LG Games. The LG Games are the Swedish leg of the annual Euro Tour which features national teams comprised of the best club team players from Europe. The games will run from February 8th to February 11th.