· No. 59
· More Drouinsanity
· Lightning roller coaster going up again
· New Lightning identity
· Thomas signed; more on the way?
· A Norwegian #BPMailbag
KHL Eastern Conference Finals
(2)Magnitogorsk 3 vs. (4)Ufa 2 (OT)
Magnitogorsk Leads the Series 1-0
Vasily Koshechkin, Magnitogorsk, OT Win, 47/49, 1.34 GAA, .959 sv%
Playoff totals: 8 GP, 7-1-0, 2 SO, 1.35 GAA, .954 sv%
Regular season totals: 50 GP, 22-15-9, 4 SO, 2.12 GAA, .925 sv%
Ex-Blue Jackets pick Sergei Mozyakin scored 9:37 into the second OT of Game One to deliver Magnitogorsk and 3-2 win over Ufa. Mozyakin also had a helper in the win. Ex-Wings second rounder Igor Grigorenko had a goal in defeat for Ufa and ex-Oilers pick Linus Omark added a pair of helpers.
No Drouin, no problem.
Kristers Gudlevskis allowed 1 goal on 29 shots for the victory.
UTI Friesen, (10) (Sautner, Kenins), 4:12
SYR Erne, (12) (Richard, Gourde), 10:37
SYR Vermin, (6) (Peca, Martindale), 19:01 (PP)
SYR Peca, (6) (Tambellini, Vermin), 19:45 (EN)
Joel Vermin and Gudlevskis were the game's first and second stars.
Box score from TheAHL.com.
Erik Condra obliterates everything you thought you knew about this team...
Ben Bishop allowed 2 goals on 25 shots for the win. Honestly, I thought he was fighting it hard tonight and got the benefit of two posts early on. He may need to go back into five-hole rehab after that Helm goal, in fact. Fortunately, the puck luck early on went the Lightning's way and allowed them to settle into a pretty good defensive game that protected Ben while allowing him to drink from the waters of sweet, sweet goal support.
1:47 TB Condra(4), (Palat, Boyle)
9:55 TB Namestnikov(13), (Brown)
0:33 TB Stamkos(34), (Kucherov, Hedman)
8:08 DET Abdelkader(18), (Zetterberg, Kronwall)(PP)
15:25 DET Helm(12), (Datsyuk, Mantha)
17:42 TB Kucherov(28), (Johnson, Stamkos)(PP)
1:03 TB Palat(14), (Johnson, Hedman)
16:56 TB Condra(5), (Boyle)
Erik Condra, Victor Hedman, and Ondrej Palat were the game's three stars. Yes, Erik Condra. And, what should terrify you more about the face that Condra had 2 goals is that he probably should've had 1-2 more. Try to think what a Condra hat trick would've done to the laws of time and space... and then thank your lucky stars tragedy was averted tonight.
Tonight's game was a convergence of them being on their possession game and getting the benefit of a lot of the puck luck. It wasn't a perfect game. They were sloppy at times with turnovers. Bishop was a little off, as noted. Alex Killorn looked like he was Magnus ver Magnussen in one of those strongman competitions pulling a semi truck behind him all game. But, on balance, they were on their possession game forechecking hard, their power play was actually not a liability tonight, and they got some breaks. That's a good formula for beating down a team 6-2, and one you'd hope will be repeated a few more times before all is said and done in the 2015-2016 campaign.
The win vaults the Lightning into a tie with the Panthers atop the Atlantic Division with Tampa Bay holding the big advantage in ROW. More importantly, with 7 games to go in the final 10 game set of the year, the Lightning have a magic number of 7 points to ease into the playoff comfortably. That's what you want. You want to be in comfortably at the end of 80 games with the chance to either go for a banner or rest some guys in the final 2 games of the regular season. The Lightning look to be back on track to do that, only needing to go .500 the next 7 games to hit the season target of 96 points.
Jonathan Marchessault was +1 with 1 shot and 1 blocked shot in 14:22. By my count he's now 2 games away from graduation from prospect status on the website.
TAMPA BAY – The Tampa Bay Lightning have signed defenseman Ben Thomas to a three-year, entry-level contract today, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced.
Thomas, 6-foot-2, 180 pounds, began the 2015-16 season with the Calgary Hitmen of the Western Hockey League. He recorded three assists in 14 games with Calgary prior to being traded to the Vancouver Giants, also of the WHL, on October 27. Thomas skated in 60 games with the Giants, registering eight goals and 25 points with 40 penalty minutes. He led all Vancouver defensemen for goals and ranked second for assists and points.
The Calgary native has appeared in 213 career WHL games with the Hitmen and Giants, recording 22 goals and 90 points. He also played for Team Canada at the 2014 Under-18 World Championships, tallying one assist in seven games en route to earning the Bronze Medal.
Thomas was drafted by the Lightning in the fourth round, 119th overall, of the 2014 NHL Draft.
KHL Western Conference Finals
(1)CSKA 3 vs. (6)St. Petersburg 0
CSKA Leads the Series 1-0
Nikita Gusev, St. Petersburg, 0-0-0, -2, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Playoff totals: 12 GP, 5-9-14, -1, 0 PIM
Regular season totals: 56 GP, 20-29-49, +15, 14 PIM
Isles third rounder Ilya Sorokin stopped all 27 shots he faced for the shutout in CSKA's 3-0 Game One win over SKA. Ex-Senators farmhand Stephane DaCosta had a goal in the match for CSKA. Nikita Gusev played 20:10 in the loss.
Matt Taormina’s role with the Syracuse Crunch includes a little bit of everything.
The defenseman is one of the team’s main power play quarterbacks, a top penalty killer, a workhorse on the blue line during 5-on-5, and a veteran presence in the room. Taormina’s play has earned him a spot in the AHL All-Star Classic, as well multiple call-ups to the Tampa Bay Lightning this season.
In his seventh full pro season, Taormina still lets his play do most of the talking.
“His best asset as far as being a role model for the players is how he approaches the game during practice and in the games,” Crunch head coach Rob Zettler said. “He’s not a real vocal guy who’s loud and in people’s face. He just does his job.”
Ontario Hockey League
Ottawa 67’s 4 @ Oshawa Generals 2
C Anthony Cirelli, OSH: Did not play
Season totals: 61 GP, 21-36-57, -16, 27 PIM
2014-15 totals: 68 GP, 13-23-36, +34, 22 PIM
The Gens kept a lot of their regulars out of the lineup in preparation for the playoffs. Oshawa will play top-seeded Kingston in the first round.
Windsor Spitfires 6 @ Sarnia Sting 3
W Cristiano DiGiacinto, WSR: 0-0-0, +1, 2 PIM, 3 SOG
Season totals: 63 GP, 16-26-42, +15, 105 PIM
2014-15 totals: 63 GP, 21-24-45, -16, 100 PIM
Windsor heads into the postseason with a win after beating Sarnia. The Spits will play the Rangers in the first round.
Bolstered by an strong performance on the power play, the Crunch pulled away in the second period.
Syracuse scored four times in the middle frame and netted three goals with the man-advantage, as the Crunch routed the St. John’s IceCaps, 6-2, at the Onondaga County War Memorial Sunday.
“We had some early kills which were really good, and our power play came through,” Crunch head coach Rob Zettler said. “I think we were 3-for-3 on the first three of them, so that was a good thing that changed the game for us. I thought our guys played well and there was a number of guys who stepped it up tonight in a big game for us in a three-in-three.”
IceCaps crushed under an avalanche of multi-point nights by Syracuse.
Kristers Gudlevskis allowed 2 goals on 24 shots for the victory. Bath in the waters of sweet, sweet goal support, Kristers. Savor it.
STJ Hudon, (21) (Holloway, MacMillan), 1:23
SYR Gourde, (11) (Blujus, Richard), 7:10
SYR Tambellini, (24) (DeAngelo, Gourde), 14:25 (PP)
SYR Richard, (10) (DeAngelo, Tambellini), 9:16 (PP)
SYR Gourde, (12) (Koekkoek), 10:46
SYR Drouin, (6) (DeAngelo, Richard), 12:31
STJ Hudon, (22) (Ellis, Holloway), 14:49 (PP)
SYR Drouin, (7) (McGinn, Vermin), 19:45 (PP)
Yanni Gourde, Tanner Richard, and Jonathan Drouin were the game's three stars. Jeff Tambellini and Anthony DeAngelo also had multi-point nights, with DeAngelo breaking the 40 point plateau for the season with his 3 assists.
Syracuse continues to hover just on the outer edge of the playoff picture with just 11 games left in their regular season. Their 6-2-1-1 record in the last 10 games and back-to-back wins have given them a chance, but they'll need to keep up the pace to make it to the dance.
Box score from TheAHL.com.