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2018 Tampa Bay Lightning Draft Picks

Gabriel Fortier

Basics

Type: 
Prospect
Position: 
Left Wing
Shoots/Catches: 
Left
Height: 
5.10
Weight: 
170
Born: 
02/06/2000
Age: 
18
Hometown: 
LaSalle, PDQ
Acquired: 
Selected by Tampa Bay Lightning in Round 2 (#59) of the 2018 NHL Entry Draft
Last Team: 
Baie-Comeau (QMJHL)
Projects As: 
3rd/4th line forechecker and energy liner

Draft Info

Draft Status: 
Drafted
Draft Year: 
2018
Drafted By: 
Tampa Bay Lightning
Round: 
2
Pick No.: 
59
Draft Team: 
Baie-Comeau (QMJHL)

Contract

Contract Status: 
Unsigned

Bio

Comment: 
expected to return to Baie-Comeau for 2018-19 season
Awards: 

2017-18

  • Hlinka Memorial Gold Medal


2015-16

  • QMAAA Champion
  • Telus Cup Bronze Medal
  • YOG Silver Medal

Scouting Report

Scouting Comments: 

"Smallish winger is not the biggest, fastest, or most skilled prospect, but is a very honest player who hustles his ass off and will never cheat you on effort. Shows a keen awareness all over the ice - knows linemates' position on ice without having to look. Has instant chemistry with any linemates. Makes effective moves in tight on the rush. Fast crossovers generate speed out of his cuts - gains separation easily. Pulls off the offensive zone cycle into the high slot to create opportunities. Despite his size, shows a willingness to drive into coverage. Hard to strip the puck off him - uses his body to protect it well. Effective on the PP and understands passing angles. Creatively switches hands on stick to protect the puck with driving wide. Strong backchecker comes down deep to get into passing lanes. Terrific work ethic in all three zones." - Red Line Report

Statistics

Player statistics powered by www.eliteprospects.com

 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2014-2015 Lac St-Louis Lions Bantam AAAQBAAA24 29 2049 32|        
 2015-2016 Lac St-Louis LionsQMAAA41 18 2947 26|Playoffs17 7 1118 10 
  Lac St-Louis LionsTelus Cup7 2 13 6|        
  Canada U16 YOG6 1 12 0|        
 2016-2017 Baie-Comeau DrakkarQMJHL25 11 617 4|Playoffs1 0 00
 2017-2018 Baie-Comeau DrakkarQMJHL66 26 3359 59|Playoffs5 3 14
  Canada U18Hlinka Memorial5 2 02 0|        

Player statistics © www.eliteprospects.com

Dmitri Semykin

Basics

Type: 
Prospect
Position: 
Defense
Shoots/Catches: 
Right
Height: 
6.03
Weight: 
201
Born: 
02/24/2000
Age: 
18
Hometown: 
Somewhere in Russia, presumably
Acquired: 
Selected by Tampa Bay Lightning in Round 3 (#90) of the 2018 NHL Entry Draft
Last Team: 
Stupino (RUS-Jr)
Projects As: 
Big physical blueliner will some offensive upside

Draft Info

Draft Status: 
Drafted
Draft Year: 
2018
Drafted By: 
Tampa Bay Lightning
Round: 
3
Pick No.: 
90
Draft Team: 
Stupino (RUS-Jr)

Contract

Contract Status: 
Unsigned

Bio

Comment: 
expected to play for SKA St. Petersburg for 2018-19 season unless drafted at CHL Import Draft on June 27, 2018

Statistics

Player statistics powered by www.eliteprospects.com

 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2015-2016 Rus Moskva U16Russia U1636 4 610 64|        
 2016-2017 Rus Moskva U17Russia U1731 8 513 54|        
  Rus Moskva U18Russia U1811 1 34 8|        
 2017-2018 Kapitan StupinoMHL41 8 715 118|        
  Russia U18 (all)International-Jr3 0 11 4|        
 2018-2019 SKA-1946 St. PetersburgMHL- - -- -|        

Player statistics © www.eliteprospects.com

Alex Green

Basics

Type: 
Prospect
Position: 
Defense
Shoots/Catches: 
Right
Height: 
6.02
Weight: 
187
Born: 
06/18/1998
Age: 
20
Hometown: 
Chicago, IL
Acquired: 
Selected by Tampa Bay Lightning in Round 4 (#121) of the 2018 NHL Entry Draft
Last Team: 
Cornell (ECAC)
Projects As: 
Bottom pair stay at home defenseman

Draft Info

Draft Status: 
Drafted
Draft Year: 
2018
Drafted By: 
Tampa Bay Lightning
Round: 
4
Pick No.: 
121
Draft Team: 
Cornell (ECAC)

Contract

Contract Status: 
Unsigned

Bio

Comment: 
expected to return to Cornell for sophomore season

Statistics

Player statistics powered by www.eliteprospects.com

 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2011-2012 CYA Bantam Minor AAAHPMBHL20 5 38 12|        
 2012-2013 Chicago Mission Bantam Major AAAHPBHL18 1 67 4|        
 2013-2014 Chicago Mission U16HPHL U1625 2 46 8|        
 2014-2015 Team White USA-S165 2 13 -|        
  Chicago Mission U16HPHL U1625 1 45 15|        
  Muskegon Lumberjacks USHL3 0 00 0|        
 2015-2016 Team Orange USA-S175 1 45 2|        
  Muskegon Lumberjacks USHL8 0 00 12|        
  Lincoln StarsUSHL29 0 22 8|Playoffs3 0 00
 2016-2017 Lincoln StarsUSHL43 1 1415 6|        
  USA U19WJAC-195 0 11 2|        
 2017-2018 Cornell Univ.NCAA29 2 810 23|        

Player statistics © www.eliteprospects.com

Magnus Chrona

Basics

Type: 
Prospect
Position: 
Goaltender
Shoots/Catches: 
Left
Height: 
6.04
Weight: 
209
Born: 
08/28/2000
Age: 
17
Hometown: 
Somewhere is Sweden, presumably
Acquired: 
Selected by Tampa Bay Lightning in Round 5 (#152) of the 2018 NHL Entry Draft
Last Team: 
Nacka HK J20
Projects As: 
Huge goaltender project

Draft Info

Draft Status: 
Drafted
Draft Year: 
2018
Drafted By: 
Tampa Bay Lightning
Round: 
5
Pick No.: 
152
Draft Team: 
Nacka HK J20

Contract

Contract Status: 
Unsigned

Bio

Comment: 
expected to play for Nacka HK J20 for 2018-19 season; maybe NCAA for 2019-20 season

Statistics

Player statistics powered by www.eliteprospects.com

 Season Team League GP GAA SVS%      Playoffs GP GAA SVS%
 2015-2016 AIK U16U16 Div.117 2.83 .908|      
  AIK U16U16 SM2 3.00 .886|      
  AIK J18J18 Elit5 4.39 .884|      
  AIK J20SuperElit1 8.80 .714|      
 2016-2017 Nacka HK J18J18 Elit13 2.44 .915|      
  Nacka HK J18J18 Allsvenskan12 4.60 .893|Playoffs4 6.54 .860
  Nacka HK J20J20 Elit1 4.09 .826|      
  Nacka HKDivision 10 - -|Relegation0 - -
 2017-2018 Nacka HK J18J18 Elit15 2.13 .931|      
  Nacka HK J18J18 Allsvenskan7 1.14 .954|Playoffs1 3.00 .917
  Nacka HK J20J20 Elit0 - -|      

Player statistics © www.eliteprospects.com

Cole Koepke

Basics

Type: 
Prospect
Position: 
Left Wing
Shoots/Catches: 
Left
Height: 
6.01
Weight: 
185
Born: 
05/17/1998
Age: 
20
Hometown: 
Hermantown, MN
Acquired: 
Selected by Tampa Bay Lightning in Round 6 (#183) of the 2018 NHL Entry Draft
Last Team: 
Sioux City (USHL)
Projects As: 
Bottom six grinder with offensive upside

Draft Info

Draft Status: 
Drafted
Draft Year: 
2018
Drafted By: 
Tampa Bay Lightning
Round: 
6
Pick No.: 
183
Draft Team: 
Sioux City (USHL)

Contract

Contract Status: 
Unsigned

Bio

Comment: 
committed to Univ of Minnesota-Duluth for 2018-19 season

Statistics

Player statistics powered by www.eliteprospects.com

 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2013-2014 Hermantown HighUSHS-MN25 17 1128 12|Playoffs3 0 22
  Hermantown HighMN State3 1 12 0|        
 2014-2015 Team Forest USA-S164 3 14 -|        
  Hermantown HighMN State3 1 12 2|        
  Team NorthUSHS-MN19 4 48 8|Playoffs3 0 11
  Hermantown HighUSHS-MN25 17 1936 12|Playoffs3 3 36
 2015-2016 Team NorthUSHS-MN20 7 714 4|Playoffs3 3 14
  Hermantown HighMN State3 6 511 2|        
  Hermantown HighUSHS-MN24 31 2253 23|Playoffs3 4 04
  Minnesota WildernessNAHL9 2 13 4|Playoffs8 0 00
 2016-2017 Sioux City MusketeersUSHL22 3 25 19|        
 2017-2018 Sioux City MusketeersUSHL60 28 1139 34|        
 2018-2019 Univ. of Minnesota-DuluthNCAA- - -- -|        

Player statistics © www.eliteprospects.com

Radim Salda

Basics

Type: 
Prospect
Position: 
Defense
Shoots/Catches: 
Left
Height: 
6.00
Weight: 
185
Born: 
02/18/1999
Age: 
19
Hometown: 
Pardubice, CZE
Acquired: 
Selected by Tampa Bay Lightning in Round 7 (#206) of the 2018 NHL Entry Draft
Last Team: 
HK Hradec (CZE)
Projects As: 
Project offensive defenseman

Draft Info

Draft Status: 
Drafted
Draft Year: 
2018
Drafted By: 
Tampa Bay Lightning
Round: 
7
Pick No.: 
206
Draft Team: 
Saint John (QMJHL)

Contract

Contract Status: 
Unsigned

Bio

Comment: 
expected to return to Rimouski for 2018-19 season

Statistics

Player statistics powered by www.eliteprospects.com

 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2012-2013 HC Hradec Kralove U16Czech U1611 0 22 10|        
  Kralovehradecky kraj U15MMCR5 0 11 4|        
 2013-2014 HC Hradec Kralove U16Czech U1631 2 57 30|Playoffs4 0 11
  Kralovehradecky kraj U15ODM5 1 01 1|        
 2014-2015 HC Hradec Kralove U16Czech U1630 3 1518 40|Playoffs6 2 79
  HC Hradec Kralove U16Final tournament3 0 22 6|        
  Czech Republic U16 (all)International-Jr17 0 44 14|        
 2015-2016 HC Hradec Kralove U18Czech U1831 6 1319 36|Playoffs3 0 22
  HC Hradec Kralove U20Czech U209 0 11 12|Playoffs1 0 00
  Czech Republic U17WHC-175 0 00 6|        
  Czech Republic U17 (all)International-Jr28 1 45 26|        
 2016-2017 HC Hradec Kralove U18Czech U183 0 33 2|Playoffs6 2 35 14 
  HC Hradec Kralove U20Czech U2035 7 815 50|        
  HC Stadion LitomericeCzech20 0 00 0|Relegation2 0 22
  Czech Republic U18Hlinka Memorial5 0 11 0|        
  Czech Republic U18WJC-185 0 11 8|        
  Czech Republic U18 (all)International-Jr26 3 58 22|        
 2017-2018 Saint John Sea DogsQMJHL62 10 3141 78|        
  Czech Republic U20WJC-207 0 00 4|        
  Czech Republic U20 (all)International-Jr9 0 00 8|        
 2018-2019 HK Hradec KraloveCzech- - -- -|        

Player statistics © www.eliteprospects.com

Ty Taylor

Basics

Type: 
Prospect
Position: 
Goaltender
Shoots/Catches: 
Left
Height: 
6.03
Weight: 
201
Born: 
07/05/1999
Age: 
18
Hometown: 
Richmond, BC
Acquired: 
Selected by Tampa Bay Lightning in Round 7 (#214) of the 2018 NHL Entry Draft
Last Team: 
Vernon (BCHL)
Projects As: 
Big project goaltender

Draft Info

Draft Status: 
Drafted
Draft Year: 
2018
Drafted By: 
Tampa Bay Lightning
Round: 
7
Pick No.: 
214
Draft Team: 
Vernon (BCHL)

Contract

Contract Status: 
Unsigned

Bio

Comment: 
committed to University of New Hampshire for 2018-19 season
Awards: 

2017-18

  • BCHL Best GAA (1.87)
  • BCHL Best SV% (.931)
  • BCHL First Team All-Star
  • BCHL Top Goaltender


2015-16

  • CSSHL Best GAA (1.46)
  • CSSHL Best SV% (.943)
  • CSSHL Champion

Statistics

Player statistics powered by www.eliteprospects.com

 Season Team League GP GAA SVS%      Playoffs GP GAA SVS%
 2013-2014 BCMML Bruins 1U16 Cup- - -|      
 2014-2015 Greater Vancouver CanadiansBCMML0 - -|      
 2015-2016 Delta Hockey Academy PrepCSSHL18 1.46 .943|Playoffs2 3.50 .896
  Richmond SockeyesPIJHL2 3.63 .828|      
 2016-2017 Vernon VipersBCHL29 2.96 .908|Playoffs1 2.17 .857
 2017-2018 Vernon VipersBCHL31 1.87 .931|Playoffs10 2.46 .929
 2019-2020 Univ. of New HampshireNCAA- - -|      

Player statistics © www.eliteprospects.com

AHL Playoff Game Night: 5-6-18 Marlies at Crunch

Flat Crunch get flattened.

Eastern Conference Semifinals

TOR-7
SYR-1

Toronto Leads the Series 3-0

Connor Ingram allowed 7 goals on 30 shots for the loss.

First Period
3:23 TOR Mueller (2), (Holl, Smith)
4:35 TOR Grundstrom (4), (Aaltonen, Johnsson)

Second Period
10:39 TOR Aaltonen (1), (Johnsson, Grundstrom)
14:05 TOR Greening (3), (Gauthier, Engvall)
17:14 SYR Cernak (1), (Verhaeghe, Lynch)

Third Period
8:23 TOR Moore (2), (LoVerde, Pickard)
15:08 TOR Johnsson (2), (Liljegren, Aaltonen)
18:20 TOR Moore (3), (Mueller)

Hard to believe about 24 hours ago the Crunch were a bounce away from making this a very competitive series. Clearly the sting of that Double OT loss carried over to Game Three and now the Crunch are in a seemingly impossible 3-0 hole.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

NHL Playoff Game Day: 5-6-18 Bruins at Lightning

Lightning stay the course and finish off the Bruins.

Eastern Conference Semifinals

BOS-1
TB-3

Tampa Bay Wins the Series 4-1

Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 1 goal on 28 shots for the victory. Didn't face a ton of quality chances until Boston made their late push to equalize and in those moments Andrei was huge.

First Period
19:12 BOS Krejci (3), (McAvoy, Bergeron)(PP)

Second Period
10:43 TB Point (4), (unassisted)
14:00 TB Miller (2), (Kucherov, Stamkos)(PP)

Third Period
18:31 TB Stralman (1), (Hedman)(EN)

Vasilevskiy, J.T. Miller, and Brayden Point were the game's three stars.

What a series by the Tampa Bay Lightning as the exorcised the demons of the past quarter century to humiliate the Bruins in five games. After a horrible result in Game One, Brayden Point's line rebounded to outplay the Bruins' top line and help lead the Lightning into the Eastern Conference Finals. Today, the Lightning showed the maturity to stay the course at 5v5 after a hard luck late power play goal allowed in the First Period. The Lightning kept up the pressure and it was ultimately Point that unlocked Rask and Ondrej Palat who later drew the penalty that led to J.T. Miller's game winning power play goal. Those two players, Point and Palat, had amazing series and played some of the best 200 foot hockey you'll ever see in your life.

Now the Lightning await the winner of the Caps/Penguins series. Who am I rooting for in that encounter? A natural disaster that swallows up both teams, of course.

Anthony Cirelli had 2 hits and 1 blocked shot in 13:22. He was also 42% on 19 draws. The Lightning won 55% as a team today and that was a tremendous factor in their ability to win this series overall. They punched well above their weight class in the circles.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

AHL Playoff Game Night: 5-5-18 Crunch at Marlies

Crunch leave Toronto empty handed after double OT thriller.

Eastern Conference Semifinals

SYR-1
TOR-2 (2OT)

Toronto Leads the Series 2-0

Connor Ingram shined allowing 2 goals on 57 shots for the OT loss. He's exceeded expectations as a rookie and continues to make you think his ceiling could be higher than originally thought.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
9:25 SYR Peca (3), (Stephens)

Third Period
6:52 TOR Marchment (2), (Moore)

Overtime
NO SCORING

Double Overtime
15:10 TOR Gauthier (1), (Engvall)

Ingram was the game's second star.

That's a tough one to take, given the Crunch were just a bounce away from putting themselves in a really good position in this series. As it is, there's no need to panic. It's not a series until someone drops a home game. But, it does put a lot of pressure on Syracuse to win the next two tilts at home to get the series back to level.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 5-5-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

#2 Acadie-Bathurst Titan 4 @ #1 Blainville-Boisbriand Armada 0 (Game 2)
Finals
Series tied at 1-1

C Alex Barré-Boulet , BLB: 0-0-0,-2, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 9/12 FO
Playoff Totals: 15 GP, 12-13-25, +13, 12 PIM
Season Totals: 65 GP, 53-66-116, +28, 67 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 65 GP, 29-52-81, +10, 42 PIM

The Titan struck back after a loss to the Armada in Game1, as Evan Fitzpatrick (STL, 2016 2nd round pick) pitched a 27-shot shutout to lead Acadie-Bathurst to a Game 2 victory. Antoine Morand (ANA, 2017 2nd round pick) paced the Titan with two goals, both scored during a three-goal 3rd period. After the teams skated to a 0-0 tie at the 1st intermission. Top-ranked righty blueliner Noah Dobson (2018 draft eligible) finally broke through for the game’s first tally early in the 2nd period, and Ethan Crossman (2018 draft eligible) topped off the Titan 3rd period flurry with the final goal at 24 seconds left in the game. The series flips to Centre régional K.C. Irving in Bathurst for Game 3 on Tuesday night.

Ontario Hockey League

#2 Hamilton Bulldogs 2 @ #1 Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 4 (Game 2)
OHL Finals
Series tied at 1-1

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 5 SOG
Playoff Totals: 20 GP, 16-13-29, +13, 8 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 42-43-85, +53, 30 PIM
’16-’17 Season: 66 GP, 35-29-64, +18, 46 PIM

W Taylor Raddysh, SSM: 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM, 4 SOG
Playoff Totals: 20 GP, 13-16-29, +3, 10 PIM
Season Totals (SSM): 28 GP, 18-21-39, +14, 14 PIM
Season Totals (ER): 30 GP, 15-29-44, +10, 16 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 33-50-83, +24, 30 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals: 58 GP, 42-67-109, +67, 37 PIM

After dropping Game 1 on home ice, the Soo fought back with a strong 2nd period that was the difference maker in the Game 2 equalizer for the Greyhounds. The Soo were paced by a two-goal, three-point night by Morgan Frost (PHI, 2017 1st round pick) and by a 36-save performance by Matthew Villalta (LAK, 3rd round pick). Frost set up top prospect Barret Hayton (2018 draft eligible) for a power play talley early in the first, but Game 1 hero MacKenzie Entwistle (ARI, 2017 3rd round pick) scored a power play marker of his own just 25 seconds before the 1st intermission to knot the score. Bolt prospect Taylor Raddysh would then set up Frost for his power play goal in the 2nd to reestablish the Soo lead, followed by what would eventually be the game-winner by Jack Kopacka (ANA, 2016 4th round pick). Later in the 3rd period, Brandon Saigeon (2018 draft eligible) would notch his 2nd of the series and 14th of the playoffs, a power play goal that would draw the Bulldogs within one, but Frost would seal the victory with an empty net shortie with 14 seconds left in the game. The series moves to Hamilton Monday night for Game 3.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 5-4-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

#2 Acadie-Bathurst Titan 1 @ #1 Blainville-Boisbriand Armada 4 (Game 1)
Finals
Armada leads series 1-0

C Alex Barré-Boulet , BLB: 1-1-2, E, 0 PIM, 3 SOG, 7/13 FO
Playoff Totals: 14 GP, 12-13-25, +14, 12 PIM
Season Totals: 65 GP, 53-66-116, +28, 67 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 65 GP, 29-52-81, +10, 42 PIM

Bolt prospect Alex Barré-Boulet set up Charles-Antoine Giguere (undrafted) for the game-opening goal just 1:14 into game, and then scored a talley of his own in the 3rd precisely 1:14 after the Titan’s lone goal of the game, a short-handed marker by Justin Ducharme (2018 draft eligible). The Armada built up a three goal lead en route to a Game 1 win in the QMJHL finals. These two teams battle again in Game 2 in Boisbriand on Saturday.

NHL Playoff Game Night: 5-4-18 Lightning at Bruins

Lightning weather the storm, rain down the thunder on Boston in OT.

Eastern Conference Semifinals

TB-4
BOS-3 (OT)

Tampa Bay Leads the Series 3-1

Andrei Vasilevsiy allowed 3 goals on 32 shots for the OT victory. Still don't think we've seen the full array of what he's capable of, and maybe that should give us all some comfort. He's due to get hot any time now.

First Period
4:36 TB Point (3), (unassisted)
9:53 TB Kucherov (6), (Hedman, Stamkos)(PP)
15:28 BOS Pastrnak (6), (Krug, Marchand)(PP)

Second Period
2:04 BOS Bergeron (5), (Krug)(PP)

Third Period
6:36 BOS Bergeron (6), (Marchand)(SH)
12:56 TB Stamkos (3), (Miller)

Overtime
3:18 TB Girardi (2), (Killorn, Gourde)

Dan Girardi was the game's first star.

You had to know Boston was going to play desperate in this one and give the Lightning their best punch. This wasn't the Picasso that Game Three was. There were times (the Second Period) when it hardly qualified as Dogs Playing Poker. In the end, though, the Lightning grinded out a playoff road win by any means necessary, and they overcame a fair measure of adversity along the way to get there. The First Period was surprisingly flat for the Bruins, going down 2-0 early in what really appeared to be an extension of Game Three with the Lightning's speed running afoul of Boston at even strength. Boston's expected best punch didn't come until the Second Period when they outshot Tampa Bay 14-4 and eventually equalized the game. That period may have been Boston's best of this series, outside of the debacle in the Third Period in Tampa in Game One. Tampa Bay got back on their horse in the Third Period only to surrender a lead goal to the Bruins shorthanded. Things looked bleak until a borderline play by Kucherov on the forecheck created a turnover that the slumbering Steven Stamkos blistered past Rask on the one-timer, and we were headed to Overtime. In the extra session, Tampa Bay was under heavy duress early with Boston knowing they needed a quick winner with Krug out injured (ankle/foot) and down to 5 d-men. They weathered a couple of tough shifts by Boston and then started to apply some forecheck of their own to manufacture a greasy goal by Dan Girardi, of all people, and the Lightning are on the precipice of advancing to the Eastern Conference Final (and retiring, mercifully, Rene Rancourt forever).

Boston's faithful will surely flog the fact that Stamkos' goal resulted from an uncalled hold by Nikita Kucherov on the forecheck. Yes, it could've been a call. So could the hook that was put on Kucherov on a breakaway late in the Third Period, as well. I'm amazed that the national hockey media and fans are somehow surprised at the phenomenon of refs swallowing their whistles in the final ten minutes of playoff games. It's only been that way since the dawn of time.

And, to be blunt, nobody from Boston or their water carriers on Bruins Pravda (NBCSN) has the right to lecture anyone about officiating or justice when they continue to look the other way when Brad Marchand does things like he did tonight with an uncalled low bridge hit on Ryan Callahan that he followed up by licking Ryan Callahan on the nose in a resulting scrum. This is a player who, you'll recall, bit a linesman in Game Two. So do you get to lecture us about officiating or justice? Um, no. Brad Marchand should've been suspended after Game Two and he should've been kicked out of the game in Game Four. Point blank. And, if he was wearing a Lightning jersey and not vice versa, we all know he probably would have been. The league, its officials, the national media, and Bruins fans continue to coddle this psychopath and if he played in most any other city in the league he'd have been Sean Avery'ed a long time ago.

Game Five the Lightning have a glorious opportunity to complete the impressive task of getting through the first two rounds in just 10 games, minimizing attrition and maximizing the conservation of energy that will be needed for the heavy lifting yet to come. And, in Tampa Bay, Jon Cooper will have the opportunity to play with the shiny new toy he was given in Boston now that he'll have last change. Specifically, he knows he can spot the Point line against the Krejci line on and off throughout the game and anytime that matchup came up in Game Three and Game Four the Point line absolutely dominated the matchup and created several goals. Between that and the very real possibility Krug isn't coming back in this series, Sunday has an opportunity to be quite a day in Lightning history.

P.S. Did you see those two laser one-timer goals, Lightning fans? Stop with the hand-wringing about Kucherov and Stamkos. They're going to be fine.

Anthony Cirelli was +1 with 2 hits and 1 blocked shot in 12:35. He was also 36% on 11 draws.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 5-3-18

Ontario Hockey League

Hamilton Bulldogs 4 @ Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 3 (OT) (Game 1)
OHL Finals
Bulldogs lead series 1-0

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 1-0-1, -1, 0 PIM, 6 SOG
Playoff Totals: 19 GP, 16-13-29, +13, 8 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 42-43-85, +53, 30 PIM
’16-’17 Season: 66 GP, 35-29-64, +18, 46 PIM

W Taylor Raddysh, SSM: 1-0-1, E, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Playoff Totals: 19 GP, 13-15-28, +3, 10 PIM
Season Totals (SSM): 28 GP, 18-21-39, +14, 14 PIM
Season Totals (ER): 30 GP, 15-29-44, +10, 16 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 33-50-83, +24, 30 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals: 58 GP, 42-67-109, +67, 37 PIM

MacKenzie Entwistle (ARI, 2017 3rd round pick) scored his second goal of the game just shy of two minutes into overtime for the Game 1 winner, as the Bulldogs steal a road game off the Soo. The Greyhounds spotted Hamilton three goals with Entwistle opening the scoring late in the 1st, followed by goals from Robert Thomas (STL, 2017 1st round pick) and Brandon Saigeon (2018 draft eligible) early in the 2nd. But the Soo would regroup and some familiar faces to Lightning prospect followers would rise up. After Barrett Hayton (2018 draft eligible) broke the seal, Bolt prospects Boris Katchouk and Taylor Raddysh would help spark with rally, scoring in the 2nd and 3rd to eventually force OT. These two teams are back at it Saturday night for Game 3 in Saulte Ste. Marie.

AHL Playoff Game Night: 5-3-18 Crunch at Marlies

Crunch drop opening round of heavyweight matchup with Toronto.

Eastern Conference Semifinals

SYR-4
TOR-6

Toronto Leads the Series 1-0

Eddie Pasquale allowed 5 goals on 20 shots for the loss. Yuck. That stat line may beg for a goaltending change for Game Two.

First Period
8:33 TOR Brooks (1), (Marincin, Marchment)
18:34 SYR Joseph (3), (unassisted)(SH)
19:16 TOR Timashov (4), (Moore, Mueller)(PP)

Second Period
10:55 SYR Verhaeghe (1), (Stephens)(PP)
15:15 TOR Dermott (1), (Johnsson, Grundstrom)(PP)

Third Period
7:56 TOR Marchment (1), (Gauthier, Marincin)
8:53 SYR Lynch (1), (Condra, Volkov)
12:46 TOR Engvall (3), (Moore, Brooks)
18:55 SYR Lynch (2), (Joseph, Verhaeghe)
19:23 TOR Smith (1), (Gauthier)(EN)

Mathieu Joseph was the game's third star.

Toronto draws first blood in what may be, arguably, the de fact Eastern Conference Final in a clash of two AHL titans. But the Crunch should not despair. They can still accomplish what they came to Toronto to do and they actually outshot the high-powered Marlies by a comfortable 32-21 margin (albeit score effects in the Third Period were heavily involved). This feels like a long series going into it, and each team's going to have to weather some haymakers if they want the prize.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

NHL Playoff Game Night: 5-2-18 Lightning at Bruins

Eye opening victory from a resolute Lightning team puts Bruins on their heels.

Eastern Conference Semifinals

TB-4
BOS-1

Tampa Bay Leads the Series 2-1

Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 1 goal on 29 shots for the victory. He didn't have a ton of work, but when a handful of key situational saves were needed he sure as heck made them. He's starting to climb into this series now and assert himself.

First Period
1:47 TB Palat (3), (Johnson, Stralman)
3:19 TB Palat (4), (Hedman, Girardi)
14:12 BOS Bergeron (4), (Pastrnak, Nash)(PP)
16:43 TB Cirelli (1), (Gourde, McDonagh)

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
19:18 TB Stamkos (2), (Miller, Hedman)(PP)(EN)

Ondrej Palat, Vasilevskiy, and Ryan McDonagh were the game's three stars.

That was eye opening. Certainly not what I expected. There was a lot made about the scene shifting to Boston and the Bruins' ability to get the Bergeron line away from the checking of the Point line. It backfired, because the Point line feasted early and often against the Krejci line. It was such a squash Boston had to eventually concede the matchup and move the Bergeron line back on the Point line. It's the only threesome that the Bruins have that skate well enough to nullify what that line does. The problem is, if those two lines cancel the Lightning clearly have the depth advantage. Even with the top Stamkos line lacking effectiveness, the third and fourth lines have a clear quality advantage thus far in the series. And there's the conundrum for the Bruins. Couldn't happen to a nicer bunch of guys.

The other big takeaway from the night was the Lightning really coming into their own defensively as 5-man units. Boston couldn't even get through the neutral zone at key moments of the game and the Lightning were super efficient at moving the puck out of their own zone. Some Bruins fans were even booing their team in frustration as the Lightning continued to choke the life out of their attack. The Bruins coaching staff will make adjustments to get through the neutral zone better, but what you saw tonight was a stunning display of offensive power from a team that didn't do much of that the second half of the regular season.

The Lightning just accomplished what they came to do in Boston. Now they're playing with the house's money going into Game Four. Steal that one and they've got a shot to shorten this series, surprisingly, and set themselves up in a really nice position moving forward. Expect Boston's best shot, though, so Vasilevskiy's going to need to be big for the Lightning to pull the next encounter out.

Anthony Cirelli had his first NHL playoff goal and was +1 with 5 shots in 11:44. He was also 17% on 6 draws. Should've had a second goal after being pulled down chasing a loose puck on a break with an empty net in front of him. He was excellent tonight, even filling some extra shifts with Cedric Paquette serving an extended penalty for a fight.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 5-1-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

#9 Charlottetown Islanders 1 @ #1 Blainville-Boisbriand Armada 6 (Game 7)
Semifinals
Armada wins series 4-3

C Alex Barré-Boulet , BLB: 1-3-4, +3, 0 PIM, 3 SOG, 7/12 FO, *Second Star*
Playoff Totals: 13 GP, 11-12-23, +14, 12 PIM
Season Totals: 65 GP, 53-66-116, +28, 67 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 65 GP, 29-52-81, +10, 42 PIM

The Armada scored early and often, pasting six goals on the scoreboard at the Centre d'excellence Sports Rousseau, punching their ticket to the QMJHL Finals against the Acadie-Bathurst Titan. Bolt prospect Alex Barré-Boulet scored short-handed early in the 1st period in what would be the eventual Game 7 winner, adding an additional three assists to earn a Second Star. Barre-Boulet’s linemate Alexandre Alain (undrafted) notched a hat trick and five points to pace the Armada. Barre-Boulet, Alain, and teammate Drake Batherson (OTT, 2017 4th round pick) own the Top 3 slots in practically every playoff offensive statistical category.

The top-two regular season teams in the Q will square off Friday night in Boisbriand for Game 1. The Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds and the Hamilton Bulldogs, the two best OHL regular season teams, kick off the OHL Finals Thursday in Sault Ste. Marie. Game 1 of the WHL Finals between the Swift Current Broncos and the Everett Silvertips gets underway Friday night in Swift Current.

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