BoltProspects has confirmed that Tampa Bay no longer retains the rights to prospect forward Justin Courtnall, the Lightning's last pick in the 7th round of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft. Courtnall was drafted out of BCHL Victoria and normally would have to be signed two years after his draft date, but it was thought that the Lightning would retain his rights while Courtnall continues his hockey development at Boston University. It's unclear at the time of this report why the Lightning do not retain Courtnall's rights, but it is speculated that perhaps Courtnall is not attending BU on a scholarship and perhaps that is the reason why Tampa cannot retain his rights without a contract. BoltProspects will update this story as more information is revealed.
UPDATE: The loss of Courtnall's rights had nothing to do with whether or not he is on scholarship at BU, but solely because he was not already in an NCAA program when the deadline to sign 2007 draft picks passed.
N.A. Juniors Playoff Game Night: 5/6
Justin Courtnall scored his first goals of the RBC tournament to help Len Barrie's Grizzlies advance to the Final 4 ... Fargo needs a Game 4 win to keep Indiana from hoisting the Cup on North Dakota ice.
N.A. Juniors Playoff Game Night: 5/5
2009 RBC Cup â€“ Round Robin
Victoria Grizzlies 4 vs. Vernon Vipers 5 (OT)
W Justin Courtnall, VIC: 0-1-1, 0 PIM
RBC Cup totals: 3 GP, 0-3-3, 12 PIM
BCHL playoff totals: 14 GP, 2-4-6, 24 PIM
Season totals: 60 GP, 22-41-63, 98 PIM
Host Victoria collapsed for the second time in three RBC games, this time allowing a game tying goal with under two minutes left in the contest, and losing in overtime to the West representative, Vernon. The Grizzlies held a 4-2 lead entering the third period, and were up 4-3 before Mike Collins scored at 18:12 to force overtime. Cole Ikkala scored in the extra session for the BCHL champs. The Grizzlies (1-2) lost their tournament opener when they gave up the game winner shorthanded with just over a second left in the game. Victoria plays East representative Summerside Western Capitals on Wednesday.