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Game Night 10/8: Lightning at Canadiens

You've got a rookie goaltender in net... you've GOT to give him more than 2 goals of support. TB-2 MTL-3 On the one hand it's gratifying to see Ranger and Artyukhin be two of the best players for the Lightning tonight. On the other, it's frightening that they've been two of the best players for the Lightning both in Montreal and in Toronto. Shot totals were plenty lopsided at 34-19 in favor of the Lightning but scoring chances were pretty much even due to some thoughtless, sloppy play. Paul Ranger ended with an assist, a team leading +2, and 2 shots on goal in 15:39 of ice time. His final shift in the third period epitomized just how well he is playing at both ends of the rink, taking the body to win the puck on a Montreal dump in, keeping a puck in at the Montreal blueline for a shot on goal, then breaking up a 2-on-1 when Boyle was caught pinching to finish the shift off. Evgeny Artyukhin also had an assist and an impressive 5 hits in 17:35 of ice time. The entire rest of the team only had 6 hits combined. On the other side of the coin Nick Tarnasky only played 2 shifts tonight. 2. If that's all he's going to be used I believe the Lightning have an obligation to send him back to Springfield where he can actually play and develop. Brian Eklund stopped 16 of 19 shots faced in the loss. He was also beaten a handful of times and enjoyed the aid of the goalposts to save him. It was a rough spot to put Brian in for his premiere game and all told, he made enough saves to give the Lightning a chance at points. Again, with a rookie netminder in, just two goals is simply unacceptable in terms of support. Game sheet from [url=http://www.nhl.com/scores/htmlreports/20052006/ES020227.HTM]NHL.com.[/url]

Rogers Remains Day-to-Day with Ankle Injury

The Prince George Cougars have confirmed that defenseman Andy Rogers is day-to-day with an ankle injury. Rogers, who nearly made the Lightning out of camp in September and was subsequently signed to a pro contract, has missed the Cougars' last six games. He has three assists in seven games played this year. Rogers missed several games last year for Calgary with a minor ankle injury. This injury could affect his participation in the ADT Canada-Russia Challenge. Rogers was named to Team WHL for the game against Russia in Regina on December 1. He was not named to the WHL squad that will play the Russians in Saskatoon November 30.

CHL Update

Lightning CHL prospects had a mediocre weekend this past Friday, Saturday, and Sunday as only one prospect made a lot of noise. Stan Lascek had a first star, five-point (1+4) night for Chicoutimi against P.E.I. on Saturday. Lascek’s point streak now stands at 11 games. Weekend Wrap-Up: QMJHL As mentioned, [b]Stanislav Lascek[/b] had a goal and four assists to pace Chicoutimi to a 5-2 win over P.E.I. Saturday. He was also plus-two for the game and had a two minute minor penalty. On Friday night, Lascek and the Sagueneens took on Lightning prospect Mark Tobin and the struggling Rimouski Oceanic. Lascek had two assists as Chicoutimi won 5-0. He also had six shots on goal. He is second in the QMJHL in scoring, two points behind teammate Maxime Boisclair. Six of Lascek’s 16 goals have come on the powerplay. Three others were scored shorthanded. Chicoutimi is just two points behind Division-leading Rouyn-Noranda with two games in hand.

TSN: Eklund Starts Tonight

TSN.ca is reporting that Brian Eklund [url=http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/feature/?fid=10460&hubname=]will make his first NHL start tonight against the Montreal Canadiens.[/url] The former 2000 7th round pick was called up last week when Sean Burke strained his groin in a practice session and rumors abound that starter John Grahame may also be ailing, prompting this decision.

Falcons/Lightning Looking to Extend Affiliation

According to the Springfield Republican, Falcons GM/Owner Bruce Landon is preparing to fly to Tampa in early December to hammer out a long term extention for the single affiliation agreement the team has with the Tampa Bay Lightning through the year 2010. The deal would coincide with the length of time left on the Falcons' lease with the newly rennovated Mass Mutual Center. The two organization's current affiliation agreement expires this summer.
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