In surprising news this morning, Lightning 2011 first rounder Vladislav Namestnikov was cut from Russiaâ€™s representation for the upcoming U20 World Junior Championships.
The news was reported by respected Russian hockey journalist Dmitry Chesnokov, who is based in the U.S.
Chesnokov (@dchesnokov) called the move a â€œsurprise,â€ saying he was told Namestnikov was viewed as a first/second line forward and â€œthere are players on those lines better than he is.â€
Namestnikov was originally practicing on Russiaâ€™s top line. He had a penalty in Russiaâ€™s first pre-tournament game and was not on the scoresheet in their second contest.
"Back to London," Namestnikov tweeted after the news was released.
Namestnikov returns to the London Knights of the OHL where he has 40 points in 33 games.
(Lightning press release) The Tampa Bay Lightning have recalled right wing JT Wyman and defenseman Evan Oberg from the Norfolk Admirals of the American Hockey League today, Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced.
Wyman, 6-foot-2, 204 pounds, has played in 29 games with Norfolk this season, recording six goals and 12 points with just six penalty minutes. His plus-10 rating ranks fourth on the team, third among forwards. In the five games leading up to his recall, Wyman has posted two goals and three points with a plus-4 rating. He has an even plus rating in 25 of 29 games this season.
TAMPA BAY, Fla. â€“ The Tampa Bay Lightning, NHL parent club of the Norfolk Admirals, have reassigned defenseman Charles Landry from the Admirals to the ECHL's Florida Everblades, Admirals General Manager Julien BriseBois announced today.
Landry, 6-foot-1, 190 pounds, has appeared in 15 games for the Admirals this season, registering five assists, 17 penalty minutes and a plus-2 rating. The pro rookie also appeared in one game for the Admirals during the 2011 Calder Cup Playoffs.
Last season, the 20-year-old native of Napierville, QuÃ©bec, appeared in 57 games with the Montreal Juniors of the QuÃ©bec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL), recording career bests with 11 goals and 40 points. He also registered a plus-26 rating. Landry led the team in goals by a defenseman, was third in points by a defenseman and was tied for third overall in plus/minus. He also posted one goal and three points in ten playoff games for the Juniors.
Concurrent with Landry's reassignment to the Everblades, the Admirals announced that they had signed defenseman Jean-Philippe CÃ´tÃ© to a standard AHL contract. CÃ´tÃ© was signed to tryout agreement on November 18. The Lightning also reassigned blueline prospect Evan Oberg from Tampa to the Admirals squad.
The Tampa Bay Lightning recalled forward Blair Jones from the Norfolk Admirals of the American Hockey League today, Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced.
Jones, 6-foot-2, 216 pounds, began the season with the Lightning, playing in 10 games and recording one assist. He logged a season-high 11:12 in ice time October 22 vs. the Buffalo Sabres. Jones has appeared in 66 career NHL games, notching two goals and seven points. He was assigned to the Admirals on November 25.
TAMPA BAY â€“ The Tampa Bay Lightning have recalled defenseman Evan Oberg from the Norfolk Admirals today, Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced. He will wear No. 43.
Oberg, 6-foot, 191 pounds, was acquired by the Lightning with Mike Kostka from the Florida Panthers on December 2 in exchange for James Wright and Mike Vernace. He was assigned to Norfolk and played in one game. Prior to being acquired, Oberg played in 12 games with the San Antonio Rampage of the American Hockey League this season, notching two assists with 14 penalty minutes. He has played in 125 career AHL games with the Rampage, Rochester Americans and Manitoba Moose. Oberg has also skated in five career Calder Cup Playoff games, all with Manitoba during the 2009-10 season.
A native of Forestburg, Alberta, Oberg has played in four career NHL games with the Vancouver Canucks. He was signed as an undrafted free agent by Vancouver on April 10, 2009. Oberg was then acquired by Florida with the Canucksâ€™ third-round choice in 2013 in exchange for Chris Higgins on February 28, 2011. Before joining the professional ranks he played at the University of Minnesota-Duluth.
TAMPA BAY â€“ The Tampa Bay Lightning have assigned forward Mattias Ritola (RIH-toh-lah, mat-TEE-uhs) to the Norfolk Admirals of the American Hockey League today, Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced.
Ritola, 6-foot, 192 pounds, has played in five games with the Lightning this season, recording 14 shots on goal while averaging 10:50 in ice time per game. He had season-highs for shots on goal with eight and time on ice with 15:11 on October 13 at the New York Islanders.
A native of Borlange, Sweden, Ritola has played in 43 career NHL games with the Lightning and the Detroit Red Wings, recording four goals and nine points. He appeared in 31 games with Tampa Bay in 2010-11, notching four goals and eight points. Ritola has played in 228 career AHL games with Norfolk and the Grand Rapids Griffins. During that time he has registered 50 goals and 133 points. Ritola has also played in 12 Calder Cup Playoff games, recording a goal and seven points.
Ritola was claimed off waivers by the Lightning from Detroit on October 5, 2010. He was drafted by the Red Wings in the fourth round, 103rd overall, of the 2005 NHL Entry Draft.
TSN's Bob McKenzie reported via Twitter today that Lightning prospect Mattias Ritola has been placed on waivers.
Ritola has spent most of the season in the press box as a healthy scratch for the Lightning. He's been in the middle of a forward rotation with Tom Pyatt and Blair Jones for playing time. Ritola had no points in his five games of action.
If Ritola clears waivers and is assigned to AHL Norfolk, it will be like when Michael Knight hit KITT's turbo boost button. Norfolk already leads the AHL in offense and Ritola had 27 points (9 goals) in 17 games with the Admirals last season.
He has until noon Thursday to be claimed.
Ritola has another year left on his contract, which he signed with the Red Wings before being claimed by Tampa Bay on waivers prior to last season. Although it's for a minimal amount of money, that extra year could scare teams away.
The Tampa Bay Lightning announced via Twitter today that former Lightning prospect Dana Tyrell would be assigned to Norfolk of the American Hockey League. An official announcement is expected shortly.
Tyrell was in a heated battle for three roster spots in Tampa with Tom Pyatt, Mattias Ritola, Blair Jones, and Brett Connolly. Due to Mattias Ohlund being placed on injured reserve, only one cut was needed and Tyrell was demoted. All things being equal with the others involved in the roster race, Tyrell is still on his entry level contract which means he doesn't have to pass through waivers to be assigned to the AHL. The Lightning would risk losing one of the others had they been waived.
Though his contract played a part in the decision, had Tyrell clearly outplayed the others, it's likely he would still be in Tampa.
The Tampa Bay Lightning reassigned forward Alex Hutchings and goaltender Pat Nagle to the ECHL's Florida Everblades today. In addition, the Lightning's to affiliate, the Norfolk Admirals, assigned forward Philip-Michael Devos to the Everblades. These moves were announced today by Admirals General Manager Julien BriseBois.
Hutchings (pictured) spent most of last season with the Everblades after nearly hitting 50 goals his final year of junior hockey with OHL Barrie. In his first year pro, Hutchings had 13 goals and 26 points in 51 ECHL games. He added three points in four playoff games with Florida, and was scoreless in his only appearance with the Admirals.