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Vermin Motivated By First Taste of NHL Action

By Jeremy Houghtaling

Joel Vermin’s first taste of the NHL only made him hungrier for more.

The forward earned a short stint with the Tampa Bay Lightning last season, and was one of the team’s final cuts from training camp this fall. Sent to Syracuse, Vermin has recorded three points in four games for the Crunch.

Vermin is now working toward getting another call-up and a permanent spot with the Lightning.

“It’s a big motivation, to be honest,” Vermin said of his time with the Lightning last year. “Once I saw how it is, the NHL, it’s like a drug. You want more of it. You use that as motivation if you’re struggling or things aren’t going the way you want them to. It keeps you motivated.”

CHL Game Night: 10-23-16

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Val-d’Or Foreurs 4 @ Halifax Mooseheads 2

W Otto Somppi, HAL: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 4 SOG, 1 Hit, 14/20 FO
Season Totals: 11 GP, 4-5-9, -5, 8 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 59 GP, 13-33-46, -15, 25 PIM

Halifax led 2-0 after one period and 2-1 after two before giving up three third period goals in a 4-2 loss.

Ontario Hockey League

Guelph Storm 4 @ Oshawa Generals 5 (OT)

C Anthony Cirelli, OSH: 1-0-1, -2, 0 PIM, 5 SOG, 18/23 FO
Season Totals: 9 GP, 9-8-17, +11, 6 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 62 GP, 21-38-59, -15 27 PIM

The Gens were down 3-0 after one period, but Cirelli got them on the board 22 seconds into the second period. They’d go up 4-3 before giving up the lead in the final minute. They’d win in overtime.

CHL Game Night: 10-22-16

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Rouyn-Noranda Huskies 5 @ Saint John Sea Dogs 1

W Bokondji Imama, SJ: 0-0-0, -3, 0 PIM, 5 SOG, 5 Hits
Season Totals: 11 GP, 1-2-3, -4, 6 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 48 GP, 7-12-19, -5, 86 PIM

W Mathieu Joseph, SJ: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 0 SOG, 0 Hits
Season Totals: 11 GP, 12-4-16, +6, 11 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 58 GP, 33-40-73, +35, 57 PIM

The Huskies held Joseph to no shots on goal as they shut down the Sea Dogs, 5-1.

Shawinigan Cataractes 4 @ Baie-Comeau Drakkar 1

W Dennis Yan, SHAW: 1-2-3, +2, 2 PIM, 4 SOG, 0 Hits
Season Totals: 9 GP, 10-5-15, +4, 16 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 62 GP, 32-37-69, +8, 86 PIM

Yan extended his goal streak to six games with the game-opening goal Saturday. He’d later add two helpers.

Ontario Hockey League

Ottawa 67’s 3 @ Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 4 (OT)

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 1-0-1, +1, 0 PIM, 5 SOG
Season: 11 GP, 3-6-9, +3, 6 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 44 GP, 13-28-41, -10 19 PIM

Katchouk scored at 2:06 of overtime to give the Soo a win over visiting Ottawa. Former Lightning defenseman Drew Bannister coaches the Greyhounds.

Owen Sound Attack 2 @ Erie Otters 5

W Taylor Raddysh, Erie: 1-1-2, +2, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 10 GP, 9-15-24, +17, 4 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 67 GP, 24-49-73, +19, 18 PIM

Taylor’s brother, Darren, had a goal and an assist from the blueline and was first star for the Otters Saturday in their win over Owen Sound.

Kingston Frontenacs 2 @ Saginaw Spirit 3

W Mitchell Stephens, SAG: 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 8/18 FO
Season Totals: 7 GP, 2-4-6, +2, 6 PIM
2015-2016 Totals: 39 GP, 20-18-38, -3, 14 PIM

Saginaw got its second win of the season against nine losses (1 OTL, 1 SOL).

Western Hockey League (late)

Tri-City Americans 3 @ Kamloops Blazers 4 (OT)

G Connor Ingram, KAM: Did not play
Season Totals: 10 GP, 4-5-0-0, 2.32 GAA, .927 sv%, 0 SO
2015-2016 Season: 61 GP, 34-15-5-4, 2.61 GAA, .922 sv%, 4 SO

Ingram got his first night off since returning to Kamloops from Lightning camp.

Saskatoon Blades 1 @ Prince George Cougars 2

D Libor Hajek, SAS: 0-0-0, -1, 2 PIM
Season Totals: 10 GP: 0-6-6, +2, 12 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 69 GP, 3-23-26, -19, 76 PIM

Saskatoon came up a goal short against Brett Connolly’s former club.

NCAA Game Night: 10-22-16

Vermont Catamounts 5 @ No. 20 Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks 2

C Ross Colton, UVM: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 4 GP, 1-0-1, -1, 2 PIM

D Kristian Oldham, UNO: Loss, 11 saves on 14 shots
Season Totals: 2 GP, 1-1-0, 2.42 GAA, .902 sv%, 0 SO

Oldham allowed three goals on 14 shots before being replaced by Alex Blankenburg. Colton was scoreless for the Catamounts.

Clarkson Golden Knights 4 @ No. 5 UMass-Lowell River Hawks 3

ECHL Game Night: 10-22-16

Kalamazoo Wings 4 at Fort Wayne Komets 1

W Brian Hart, KAL, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIMs, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 2 GP, 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIMs, 0 SOG

Other Notables
G Nic Riopel, KAL, W, 60:00 MIN, 41/42, *FIRST STAR*
Season Totals: 2 GP, 2-0-0-0, 0.50 GAA, 0.984 SV%, 1 SO

D Adam Comrie, KAL, 0-1-1, +3, 4 PIMs, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 2 GP, 0-1-1, +3, 4 PIMs, 7 SOG

Nic Riopel follows up last weekend's shutout of Norfolk with a 41 save win against the Komets in front of 7200+ at the Memorial Coliseum in Fort Wayne. Riopel earned First Star honors once again, and now leads the ECHL in both save percentage and goals against average. The K-Wings were propelled by a 3-goal 2nd period and defenseman Adam Comrie had an assist and was +3 in helping hand the Komets their first loss of the season. Former Toronto first rounder Tyler Biggs was signed mid-week by the K-Wings and made his debut scoring a goal and assisting on another. Kalamazoo plays a home-and-home next Friday and Saturday against Wheeling before completing the 3-in-3 on Sunday at home against Allen.

NHL Game Night: 10-22-16 Lightning at Senators

Determined Lightning outclass Ottawa.


Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 1 goal on 28 shots for the victory. He had next to no work for the first half of this game, so when Ottawa made their push toward the end of the Second Period he looked a little shaky, particularly on his rebound control. He collected himself and made some key saves at the start of the Third Period to keep the Sens at bay and eventually allow the Lightning to cruise to the win.

First Period

Second Period
2:36 TB Namestnikov (1), (Palat, Stralman)
6:45 TB Stamkos (3), (Namestnikov, Kucherov)(PP)
15:27 OTT Neil (1), (unassisted)

Third Period
8:02 TB Killorn (4), (Filppula, Garrison)
18:03 TB Filppula (3), (Point)

Vladislav Namestnikov and Valtteri Filppula were the game's first and third stars.

The Lightning showed me something tonight after a bit of a clunker last time out against Colorado. They came into this game... maybe not grumpy... but certainly determined to get the bad taste of that match out of their mouths. They completely dominated the First Period and most of the Second Period to build a 2-0 lead. In the future, you'd hope they'd build up that 3-0 lead to make things easy on themselves, but they did give Ottawa a couple of power plays that allowed the Senators to build some momentum and make a game of it cutting the lead to 2-1. The Lightning showed composure, though, and eventually reasserted their dominance and eventually turned the game into a laugher.

Side note: Stamkos' power play goal was a textbook example of what I was clamoring for last season and what Washington does so well: create a pressure point with Kucherov and Namestinkov on the opposite side of the ice from Stamkos' circle, and allow Steve to drift to the open spots/seams for easy goals away from the play. That's how you make this power play unstoppable if you don't have a quality righty point man who scares people.

Halfway through the opening 10 game segment of the season, Tampa Bay has a brisk 8 points. They need just 4 over the next 5 games to stay on minimum playoff pace. When you get off to a hot start like this, though, it's a perfect opportunity to put the hammer down and bank some insurance points to cover any potential bumps in the road as the season drags on.

Brayden Point had a helper and was +2 with 1 shot, 1 hit, and 1 blocked shot in 14:35.

Box score and extended statistics from

AHL Game Night: 10-22-16 Crunch at Penguins

Crunch offense shut down for the first time this season.


Adam Wilcox allowed 3 goals on 31 shots for the loss.

First Period

Second Period
8:11 WBS Porter (1), (Archibald, McNeill)(SH)
10:30 WBS Porter (2), (unassisted)(SH)
10:51 SYR Conacher (2), (Thomas, Erne)(PP)

Third Period
15:45 WBS Simon (1), (Porter, Gardiner)

Needless to say, when you give up a pair of shorthanded goals as a team you probably deserve to lose. For a team this stacked to be sitting at .500 now is a little bit of a splash of cold water. We'll see how the team responds.

Box score from

Liiga Game Day: 10-22-16

KooKoo 2 vs. SaiPa 3
Saku Salminen, SaiPa, 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season totals: 12 GP, 1-1-2, -6, 25 PIM

Saku Salminen was -1 in 8:02 of ice time in SaiPa's 3-2 win over KooKoo. Ex-Oilers pick Curtis Hamilton had 1 goal and 1 assist for SaiPa in the win. It was a rare positive result for SaiPa, which currently labors in 13th place on the 15-team Liiga table, one spot ahead of KooKoo

KHL Game Day: 10-22-16

Omsk 2 vs. St. Petersburg 3 (SO)
Nikita Gusev, St. Petersburg, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season totals: 23 GP, 9-17-26, +18, 4 PIM

Nikita Gusev scored on his only attempt of the penalty shot session to help SKA to a 3-2 Shootout win over Avangard Omsk. Gusev played 15:07 in the match. Living legend Pavel Datsyuk had a helper in the contest and potted the SO winner for SKA.

ECHL Game Night: 10-21-16

Fort Wayne Komets 1 at Kalamazoo Wings 1

W Brian Hart, KAL, 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIMs, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 1 GP, 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIMs, 0 SOG

Other Notables
G Nic Riopel, KAL, DNP
Season Totals: 1 GP, 1-0-0-0, 0.00 GAA, 1.000 SV%, 1 SO

D Adam Comrie, KAL, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIMs, 6 SOG
Season Totals: 1 GP, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIMs, 6 SOG

G Pat Nagle, FW, W, 60:00 MIN, 33/34
Season Totals: 3 GP, 3-0-0-0, 1.33 GAA, 0.953 SV%, 0 SO

D Dan Milan, FW, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIMs, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 3 GP, 0-1-1, +2, 2 PIMs, 2 SOG

Former Lightning prospects Pat Nagle and Dan Milan along with their Fort Wayne Komets spoiled Kalamazoo's home opener Friday night in front of 2300+ fans at the Wings Event Center. It was also the season debut for Lightning prospect winger Brian Hart and Syracuse Crunch depth defenseman Adam Comrie after both were reassigned from the Crunch earlier in the week. Nagle continued his hot start to the 2016-17 season with the Komets, allowing just 4 goals in 3 games. K-Wings goalie and Lightning camper Joel Martin also continued his solid start to the season, having allowed just 3 goals in 2 games. Nic Riopel is expected to be in net Saturday for the K-Wings on the backside of the home-and-home with the Komets.

Nagle signed an entry-level contract with Tampa Bay out of Ferris State in 2011, and helped lead the Florida Everblades to the 2011-12 Kelly Cup Championship. This marks Nagle's third-straight season with the Komets and has posted a 54-19-10 career record with Fort Wayne. Milan, who signed a three-year entry-level contract with Tampa Bay in 2011, is reunited with Nagle after playing together for the 2012-13 Everblades. Milan camped with the AHL Wilkes Barre/Scranton Penguins after being acquired by the Komets this summer from the Wichita Thunder.

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