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Lightning Sign DeAngelo to ELC

(Lightning press release)

The Tampa Bay Lightning have signed defenseman Anthony DeAngelo to a three-year, entry level contract, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced today.

DeAngelo, 19, has skated in 22 games this season with the Sarnia Sting of the Ontario Hockey League, recording seven goals and 27 points to go along with 52 penalty minutes. He ranks first for points and is second for assists (20) among all OHL defensemen. The Sewell, New Jersey native also led all OHL defensemen for points (71) and assists (56) last season.

The 5-foot-11, 173-pound defenseman has skated in 203 career OHL games, all with the Sting over four seasons, recording 37 goals and 179 points to go along with 248 penalty minutes. DeAngelo has also appeared in 10 career OHL playoff games, collecting two goals and four points.

DeAngelo was originally selected by the Lightning in the first round, 19th overall, at the 2014 NHL Draft in Philadelphia. DeAngelo was recently named to USA Hockey’s preliminary roster for the 2015 U.S. National Junior Team.

BP Commentary: DeAngelo gets a contract just ahead of USA's camp, much the same as Dana Tyrell got his as he was beginning Team Canada's WJC camp in 2008. The big difference, of course, is Tyrell was signed by Brian Lawton, not Yzerman. Stevie-Y has shown a penchant for getting his first rounders under contract early in their post-draft year to take contract worries away from them.

WJC Update

Today Lightning 2014 first rounder Anthony DeAngelo was named to Team USA's preliminary roster for their development camp. DeAngelo, an offensive defenseman and coveted righty shot, was not invited to USA's summer evaluation camp due to character concerns. This is a positive move for DeAngelo's game and reputation, which he is working to change for the better. USA returns three left-side defensemen, but just one on the right. DeAngelo can step in and provide offense in the top-6, or at least as a power play weapon. The other candidates for the right side are more 2-way defenders, so DeAngelo can help himself by being aggressive offensively in camp.

Joining DeAngelo in USA's camp is 2014 WJC participant Adam Erne of QMJHL Quebec. Erne is a near lock for the team and could be wearing a letter for the team. He is projected to play on USA's first or second line.

NHL Game Night: 12-1-14 Lightning at Rangers

Taking out the trash.

TB-6
NYR-3

Ben Bishop allowed 3 goals on 35 shots for the victory as the Lightning swept the season series against Benedict Arnold and the Rangers 3-0. He also had a helper in tonight's game on top of several sparkling saves that allowed the Lightning to keep contact before eventually pulling away in the Third Period.

First Period
6:32 TB Johnson (7), (Palat, Hedman)
12:14 NYR Hayes (3), (Hagelin, Stempniak)
16:02 TB Connolly (3), (Hedman, Bishop)

Second Period
2:42 NYR Fast (2), (Brassard, Nash)
9:24 NYR St. Louis (10), (McDonagh, Stepan)(PP)
14:23 TB Carle (2), (Johnson, Filppula)

Third Period
5:34 TB Connolly (4), (Stamkos, Hedman)(PP)
6:58 TB Johnson (8), (Kucherov, Gudas)
19:33 TB Palat (6), (unassisted)(SH)(EN)

Brett Connolly, Tyler Johnson, and Victor Hedman were the game's three stars.

That was satisfying. No, not because the Lightning played their best game. They didn't. Their passing wasn't sharp and allowed the Rangers to run up a big shot advantage. Along with a handful of terrible turnovers the Lightning really allowed themselves to be put on the ropes when they fell behind in the Second Period and failed to capitalize on a 5-on-3 advantage. And then Matt stinking Carle scored to tie the game and the Rangers' world started caving in around them.

You see, after getting annihilated in the first two games of the season series, the Rangers decided this was their measuring stick. This was going to be their big moment to show they were ready to run with the big dogs! Ryan McDonagh, who by virtue of being captain of the Rangers evidently immediately became Brian Leetch reincarnate in New York last year, or something equally irrational, was going to return from injury to help the Rangers smite their new tormentors from the South!

BTW, Rangers and fans, for the record, Victor Hedman > Ryan McDonagh. But, I digress.

The Rangers' best punch they could throw, their heavyweight haymaker, was a Second Period where they walked into the locker room tied 3-3. And, at that point, I think everybody in that building knew how the Third Period would unfold. And brother, it did. Martin St. Louis finished the 3 game series with 2 goals and 2 points, 1 more point than Ben Bishop, and a pretty fantastic -6 rating. I can see why Slats threw in the 2 first rounders.

On the Lightning side of the ledger, it was no surprise the Kucherov line continues to dominate the opposition, but Brett Connolly was a revelation with 2 goals and another that got disallowed for being deflected in with a high stick. You're beginning to see the high-end, elite skill Brett was touted to possess when he was selected in the top-10 so many years ago. He's sugar in open ice, although he might still be another word that starts with "s" along the wall. Also of note, Victor Hedman sneezed 3 assists tonight without even trying. It's obscene how easily he's tallied points since about the midway point of last season.

With 25 games played, the Lightning sit at 36 points, meaning with 5 games remaining in segment 3 of the season they're already at the minimum point total they need to be at to comfortably be on pace to make the playoffs. Everything they get in the next 5 games just replenishes and, possibly, expands the bank of insurance points they had coming into this 10-game segment of the season.

Cedric Paquette was -1 with 2 penalty minutes 2 shots and 2 hits in 13:33.

Jonathan Drouin was -1 with 2 shots and 1 blocked shot in 10:19.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

Gourde Named AHL Player of the Month

(AHL Press Release)

The American Hockey League announced today that Syracuse Crunch left wing Yanni Gourde, Hamilton Bulldogs center Charles Hudon and Springfield Falcons goaltender Anton Forsberg have been selected as the CCM/AHL award winners for November.

Gourde, the CCM/AHL Player of the Month, tallied nine goals and nine assists for 18 points along with a plus-13 rating in 13 games for the Crunch during November.

After recording just one assist in eight games during October, Gourde led the entire AHL in scoring in November, beginning with an assist on the go-ahead goal in the Crunch’s 6-3 win at Binghamton on Nov. 1. Gourde notched his first two goals of the season in the third period of a 5-4 win over Norfolk on Nov. 8, helping the Crunch rally from a three-goal deficit, and also had two-goal games on Nov. 15 at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and Nov. 19 at Hartford, both sparking come-from-behind wins as well. Gourde tallied the game-winning goal in the Crunch’s 2-1 win over Utica at the Toyota Frozen Dome Classic inside the Carrier Dome on Nov. 22, and registered his first three-point night of the year with a goal and two assists against the Comets on Nov. 26.

KHL Game Day: 12-1-14

Khanty Mansiysk 3 vs. Magnitogorsk 0
Nikita Gusev, Khanty-Mansiysk, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season totals: 30 GP, 9-7-16, +1, 10 PIM

Vasily Koshechkin, Magnitogorsk, Loss, 19/21, 2.02 GAA, .905 sv%
Season totals: 29 GP, 19-4-4, 3 SO, 1.60 GAA, .939 sv%

Ex-Wild pick and longtime journeyman Barry Brust made 39 saves to lead Yugra to a shutout victory over Magnitogorsk. Ex-Sharks first rounder Lukas Kaspar also had a pair of goals for Yugra in the win. Nikita Gusev was scoreless in 15:48 in the contest.

Chekhov 2 vs. Mytischi 1 (SO)
Dmitry Korobov, Mytischi, 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 4 SOG
Season totals: 19 GP, 1-2-3, -1, 16 PIM

Ex-Sharks pick Harri Sateri made 48 saves and stopped 2 of 3 in the shootout to lead Chekhov to a 2-1 win over Mytischi. Dmitry Korobov played 20:06 in the loss.

Bratislava 5 vs. Novosibirsk 0
Jaroslav Janus, Bratislava, Win, 18/18, SO, 0.00 GAA, 1.000 sv%
Season totals: 14 GP, 4-7-3, 2 SO, 2.21 GAA, .914 sv%

Jaroslav Janus finally got off the bench and stopped all 18 shots he faced for a 5-0 blanking of Novosibirsk. Slovan also got a pair of helpers from ex-NHLer Ladislav Nagy in the win.

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