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NHL Game Night: 11-3-18 Lightning at Canadiens

Lightning toy with Montreal like a cat toys with a mouse.

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Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed just 1 goal on 35 shots for the victory. Really played solid at several moments of the game, most notably the first half of the First Period and the Second Period, when the team in front of him looked a little disinterested.

First Period
0:58 MTL Domi (7), (unassisted)
13:42 TB Stamkos (3), (Kucherov)
16:24 TB Miller (4), (Stralman)

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
0:52 TB Stamkos (4), (Kucherov, Stralman)
15:57 TB Gourde (5), (Point, Stralman)

Vasilevskiy, Steven Stamkos, and Anton Stralman were the game's three stars.

Tonight was a pretty stark illustration of the talent gap between these two teams. Montreal played really hard tonight for sixty minutes and still got smoked by a Lightning club that, frankly, took half the game off. The First Period was a case study in what good teams can do to frustrate the efforts of upstart underdogs. The Lightning came out really flat and quickly were down 1-0 and getting dominated until Nicolas Deslauriers took an ill-advised boarding call. Stamkos scored just after the end of the expiration of that PP, as good teams do when you give them opportunities, and all of Montreal's hard work went squandered. Vasilevskiy played well in a lax Second Period to preserve the 2-1 lead the Lightning carried out of the opening frame, and then the Lightning decided to finish off the Habs and did so pretty clinically in the Third Period. #Habsband play Taps.

Mathieu Joseph had 2 penalty minutes, 3 shots, and 2 hits in 12:42.

Slater Koekkoek was +1 with 2 shots, 1 hit, and 5 blocked shots in 14:34. Had another pretty good game tonight.

Anthony Cirelli had 3 hits and 2 blocked shots in 14:22. He was also 60% on 15 draws.

Adam Erne had 1 shot and 3 hits in 11:23.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 11-3-18 Senators at Crunch

The Senators: good for what ails you at all levels of hockey.

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Eddie Pasquale allowed just 1 goal on 27 shots for the victory. Bathe in the purifying waters of pure goal support.

First Period
3:37 SYR Verhaeghe (3), (Foote, Conacher)(PP)

Second Period
2:00 SYR Hults (1), (Spencer, Tammela)
7:18 SYR Andreoff (5), (Volkov, Conacher)
7:56 SYR Raddysh (4), (Valleau, Spencer)
16:08 SYR Conacher (2), (Andreoff, Thomas)
16:39 BEL Englund (1),(Balisy, Sturtz)

Third Perod
8:34 SYR Conacher (3),(Andreoff)

Cory Conacher, Andy Andreoff, and the secret weapon, Matthew Spencer, were the game's three stars.

Here come the Crunch, now just one game under .500 despite having several guys nicked up and injured. This sweep of the mini series with Belleville feels like an early season turning point for the club.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

NCAA Game Night: 11-2-18

#2 St. Cloud State Huskies 5 @ Colorado College Tigers 3

D Nick Perbix, STC: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 7 GP, 0-3-3, +8, 4 PIM

The #2 ranked Huskies rolled into Colorado Springs Friday night, opening NCHC conference play against Colorado College. St. Cloud battled back from deficits twice before closing out the 3rd period with a three-goal flurry. The Tigers scored twice in the opening frame to take an early lead to the first intermission. The Huskies would knot the score at 2-2 after goals late in the 2nd and early in the 3rd before Colorado College re-established a 3-2 lead just 32 seconds after the equalizer. The Huskies answered once again, this time with three unanswered to seal their first conference victory of the season. St. Cloud was led by a pair of goals each from Ryan Poehling (MTL, 2017 1st round pick) and Patrick Newell (undrafted). Four Huskies tallied a pair of assists each, including Jake Ahcan (undrafted), Nolan Walker (undrafted), Jimmy Schuldt (undrafted), and Robby Jackson (undrafted). St. Cloud State improves to 6-1 and completes the weekend series against the Tigers in a Saturday night rematch.

Western Michigan Broncos 2 @ #9 Denver Pioneers 5

F Cole Guttman, DEN: 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 8/13 FO
Season Totals: 5 GP, 2-4-6, +8, 4 PIM

Jarid Lukosevicius (undrafted) notched a hat trick for the Pioneers, scoring in each of the three periods, to lead Denver to victory against Western Michigan in their opening NCHC conference match Friday night. Michael Davies (undrafted) and Liam Finlay (undrafted) each tallied a goal and an assist for the Pioneers, and Ian Mitchell (CHI, 2017 5th round pick) added a pair of assists. Lightning prospect Cole Guttman extended his point streak to three games, assisting on Finlay’s 2nd period marker. The Broncos twice tied the game on a pair of Hugh McGing (STL, 2018 5th round pick) goals, but Denver responded with three unanswered to pull away. The Pioneers improve to 4-0-1 and look to finish the sweep against Western Michigan Saturday night.

#4 Minnesota State Mavericks 5 @ #10 Minnesota Gophers 1

D Ryan Zuhlsdorf, MINN: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 4 GP, 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM
’17-‘18 Totals: 38 GP, 0-9-9, +1, 40 PIM

F Sammy Walker, MINN: 0-0-0, -2, 0 PIM, 0 SOG, 5/10 FO
Season Totals: 4 GP, 1-0-1, -1, 0 PIM

The #4 ranked Mavericks won a decisive road win over the #10 ranked Gophers at the 3M Arena at Mariucci behind a two-goal, four-point performance from German Marc Michaelis (undrafted) on Friday night. Minnesota drops to 1-2-1 and rolls into Mankato Saturday night for the back half of the weekend home-and-home non-conference series between these two cross-state rivals.

Yale Bulldogs 2 @ #18 Cornell Big Red 4

D Alex Green, COR: 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 3 GP, 0-1-1, -4, 0 PIM

Bolt prospect Alex Green tallied his first point of the season on a 1st period power play marker by Cam Donaldson (undrafted), as the Big Red opened ECAC conference play with a victory over Yale. Morgan Barron (NYR, 2017 6th round pick) notched a pair of goals to lead the Cornell attack and Yanni Kaldis (undrafted) added a goal and an assist. The Big Red jumped out to a three-goal lead before the Bulldogs battled back within a goal until Barron’s empty netter with 41 seconds remaining sealed the Cornell win. The Big Red improve to 1-2 with ECAC conference play continuing Saturday when Brown visits Lynah Rink in Ithaca.

UMass-Lowell River Hawks 3 @ Maine Black Bears 4

F Ryan Lohin, UML: did not play
Season Totals: 4 GP, 0-1-1, E, 2 PIM

Maine overcame a 2-0 deficit to the River Hawks, reeling off four straight goals to hand UMass-Lowell their 2nd Hockey East conference loss. Lightning prospect Ryan Lohin did not dress for the third consecutive UML game. Sam Knoblauch (undrafted) tallied a goal and an assist for UML, establishing the early two-goal lead, but Maine’s Chase Pearson (DET, 2015 5th round pick) scored twice and Eduards Tralmaks (undrafted) and Adam Dawe (undrafted) each added a pair of assists to lead the Black Bear rally. UML falls to 3-4 on the season, but the River Hawks will have a chance for the split as these two teams tangle once again Saturday night for the back half of the weekend series.

*USCHO poll used for rankings

CHL Game Night: 11-2-18

Ontario Hockey League

Windsor Spitfires 3 @ Kitchener Rangers 0

C/W Alexey Lipanov, KIT: 0-0-0, -3, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 9 GP, 2-2-4, -5, 2 PIM
17-18 Totals (BAR, SBY): 55 GP, 14-25-39, -14, 10 PIM

2018 import pick Kari Piiroinen (2019) stopped all 34 shots he faced for his first OHL shutout as the Spits downed the Rangers in Kitchener, 3-0. Lipanov was on the ice for every goal against Friday, tying for the team worst.

AHL Game Night: 11-2-18 Senators at Crunch

Crunch hold tight in Third Period of wild, high-scoring affair.

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Connor Ingram allowed 4 goals on 32 shots for the victory.

First Period
7:42 SYR Yan (2), (Katchouk, Raddysh)(PP)
8:57 BEL Sturtz (1), (LaBate, Leier)
15:56 SYR Verhaeghe (2), (Barre-Boulet, Thomas)
19:16 BEL Tambellini (4), (Murray, Percy)(PP)

Second Period
0:48 SYR Volkov (1), (Katchouk)(PP)
4:38 SYR Andreoff (4), (Foote, Verhaeghe)(PP)
11:13 SYR Volkov (2), (Thomas, Raddysh)
16:38 BEL Tambellini (5), (Carey, Murray)(PP)
16:52 BEL Batherson (5), (Balcers, Sieloff)

Third Period
NO SCORING

Alexander Volkov, Ben Thomas, and Boris Katchouk were the game's three stars. Volkov, who was among the last cuts from the Lightning's camp, had been notably absent from the goalscoring ledger throughout the early parts of this AHL campaign. Good to see him open his 2018-2019 account tonight and good to see fellow prized prospect Boris Katchouk go get a couple of helpers to boot.

Hopefully this starts the climb back up the mountain for the Crunch. They've got at least two games in hand on the rest of the North Division, so if they can string some W's together, they can quickly climb to the middle of the divisional pack with teams like the Sens.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

CHL Game Night: 11-1-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Saint John Sea Dogs 1 @ Rimouski Oceanic 9

D Radim Salda, RIM: 1-1-2, +1, 2 PIM, 0 SOG, 0 Hits, *Second Star*
Season Totals: 6 GP, 3-3-6, -2, 6 PIM
17-18 Totals (SJ): 62 GP, 10-31-41, -37, 78 PIM

Playing against his former team, Salda had a goal and an assist and Alexis Lafreniere (2020 eligible) had two goals and an assist to lead the Oceanic to a crushing 9-1 win over visiting Saint John. With the two points, Salda is up to a point-per-game pace on the season after sitting out the first few weeks due to IIHF transfer issues. If you don’t know the name Alex Lafrenier yet, get to know it. Lafreniere is expected to be the first overall pick in 2020. He broke Sidney Crosby’s rookie goal record last year.

NHL Game Night: 11-1-18 Predators at Lightning

Details matter a lot against really good teams.

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Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 3 goals on 23 shots for the loss. I didn't think any of the three goals were his fault. Ultimately he lost a duel with the reigning Vezina winner.

First Period
6:02 NSH Turris (3), (Ekholm, Jarnkrok)
19:53 NSH Josi (3), (Johansen, Ellis)

Second Period
14:21 TB Koekkoek (1), (Killorn, Cirelli)

Third Period
16:42 NSH Jarnkrok (3), (Johansen)
17:36 NSH Salomaki (2), (Hartman, Turris)(EN)

Mathieu Joseph was the game's second star.

The better team was in the blue jerseys tonight. Even with Hedman out of the lineup the Lightning outshot/outpossessed Nashville by a 43-24 margin. But, tonight was another reminder that details matter against good teams and when they've got a goaltender playing well they only need you to make a handful of mistakes to steal a win. In that respect, although I don't think the intensity was quite to a playoff level, this was kind of like a low scoring, high stakes playoff game. Late in the First Period, all it took was for Steven Stamkos to switch off mentally for a second in defensive zone coverage and, boom, there's the GWG. So, I'd say the coaching staff got a handful of things to really harp on in video session, but the overall effort was good and the team shouldn't get too down on themselves.

Joseph was -1 with 4 shots and 3 hits in 13:39. He set up the only Lightning goal with some tenacious forechecking and had a couple of good chances on his own. His line was one of the two lines that was really playing extra well tonight.

Slater Koekkoek had a goal and 3 shots in 17:21. He's rounding into form nicely now that the rust has fallen off.

Anthony Cirelli had a helper, 2 hits, 1 blocked shot, and was 90% on 10 draws in 13:50. As noted, his line played really well tonight.

Adam Erne had 1 shot, 2 hits, and 2 blocked shots in 11:59.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

CHL Game Night: 10-31-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Gatineau Olympiques 2 @ Baie-Comeau Drakkar 5

C/W Gabriel Fortier, BC: 0-1-1, -1, 2 PIM, 0 SOG, 6/11 FO, 0 Hits
Season Totals: 17 GP, 8-14-22, +11, 9 PIM
17-18 Totals: 66 GP, 26-33-59, -11, 59 PIM

Fortier and the Drakkar broke open a 1-1 game with four goals before Gatineau closed out the scoring. Fortier continues to plug along at more than a point-per-game pace. The B-C captain had points in 10 of 12 games in October with two of those games being multi-point efforts (2, 4).

NHL Game Night: 10-30-18 Devils at Lightning

In the most desperate of moments, the Lightning deploy their secret weapon.

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Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 3 goals on 30 shots for the victory. May all your days be blessed with goal support.

First Period
1:01 NJ Wood (1), (Vatanen, Mueller)
5:04 NJ Zajac (3), (Wood)
7:30 TB Coburn (1), (Point, Gourde)
13:30 TB Coburn (2), (Paquette, Erne)

Second Period
0:31 TB Point (7), (Gourde, Johnson)
6:33 TB Kucherov (4), (McDonagh, Stamkos)(PP)
8:08 TB Stamkos (2), (Kucherov, Point)(PP)
16:47 NJ Palmieri (9), (Hall, Butcher)(PP)

Third Period
3:40 TB Johnson (5), (Point, McDonagh)
5:02 TB Kucherov (5), (Miller, Stamkos)
5:51 TB McDonagh (1), (Point, Gourde)

Brayden Point, Braydon Coburn, and Nikita Kucherov were the game's three stars.

Coming off a 7-1 defeat on the road the Lightning found themselves down 2-0 after struggling with early turnover issues. In the darkest hour and the bleakest night, the Lightning did the unthinkable. They pressed the red button. They deployed the secret weapon. The doomsday device. Braydon Coburn. And when the smoke cleared, and the damage was tallied and totaled, 8-3 Lightning.

The Lightning showed remarkable poise that a less experienced and talented team might not have shown coming off a big clunker and falling into a big early hole. It says a lot about the Lightning that they were able to crawl out of the gutter and they were able to do so by playing the right way. To get to 44 shots on goal even without Victor Hedman in the lineup is wonderful. Put aside the eight goals, because a lot of nights the goaltending in this league simply won't give you the payoff like that. 44 shots shows you the Lightning got their possession game rolling, and that's a recipe for sustainable success.

Mathieu Joseph had 1 shot and 4 hits in 14:23.

Slater Koekkoek was +1 with 2 penalty minutes, 3 shots, 3 hits, and 4 blocked shots in 15:11.

Anthony Cirelli had 2 shots and 2 hits in 15:12 and was 57% on 14 draws.

Adam Erne had a helper and 2 shots in 12:05.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

CHL Game Night: 10-30-18

Ontario Hockey League

Guelph Storm 6 @ Kitchener Rangers 2

C/W Alexey Lipanov, KIT: 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG, 0/2 FO
Season Totals: 9 GP, 2-2-4, -5, 2 PIM
17-18 Totals (BAR, SBY): 55 GP, 14-25-39, -14, 10 PIM

Lipanov has points in two straight games and might be starting to heat up. He’s capable of being a point-per-gamer in the OHL. Since you asked, Nate Schnarr (Coyotes) had two assists for Guelph.

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