Florida Everblades 2 @ Gwinnett Gladiators 4
LW Alex Hutchings, FLA: Did not play (injured)
Season Totals: 14 GP, 7-5-12, +3, 10 PIM
D Charles Landry, FLA: 0-1-1, E, 1 SOG, 0 PIM
G Pat Nagle, FLA: Did not play (backup)
Season Totals: 15 GP, 7-7-0, 3.26 GAA, .888 sv%, 1 SO
Lightning prospect and rookie pro Charles Landry (pictured) had an assist in his ECHL debut, but Florida fell in Gwinnett 4-2. Landry was reassigned by Norfolk to Florida earlier this week. Pat Nagle sat backup to Billy Sauer in the game. Sauer stopped 33 of 37 shots in the loss. Alex Hutchings remains out with an upper-body injury. He hasnâ€™t played since November 12. (Norfolk Admirals photo)
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.
A brave Norfolk Admirals team has nothing to be ashamed about effort-wise in this playoffs.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Wins the Series 4-2
Dustin Tokarski allowed 4 goals on 27 shots, including an unsuccessful third period penalty shot by Joe Vitale in the third period. Considering the winning goal was essentially a 3-on-1, there's not much more Tic could've done tonight. He finishes the playoffs with 1 shutout, a 2.20 GAA, and a .924 save percentage, and he looks like a lock to be Norfolk's starter next season. In all likelihood, Cedrick Desjardins will be the backup in Tampa Bay next season, and Tokarski's play down the stretch seems to indicate he's the type of netminder who wants and needs to be the clear cut #1 in order to be at his best after struggling a bit as a tandem starter with Desjardins. He's regained the title of the Lightning's "Goaltender of the Future" and the priority for next season, his third pro season, will be for Tokarski to prove he can be that consistent #1 goalie before potentially moving up to the NHL in the 4th season of his pro career. At least, that seems to be what the plan is for Tic.
WBS Wagner, (1) (Walker, Craig), 2:13 (PP)
WBS Wagner, (2) (Potter, Walker), 3:58 (PP)
WBS Wagner, (3) (Wallace, Potter), 18:36
NOR Pouliot, (4) (Ritola, Vernace), 14:18
NOR Jones, (1) (Ritola, Milam), 16:03 (PP)
WBS Vitale, (2) (Wallace, Collins), 7:23
NOR Wright, (1) (Fornataro, Pouliot), 10:35 (PP)
WBS Wallace, (1) (Vitale, Potter), 18:57 (EN)
WBS Sill, (1) (Strait, Thiessen), 19:21 (EN)
Marc-Antoine Pouliot was the game's third star.
When you consider the Penguins came into this series the best team in the Eastern Conference, and the Admirals had to win their last game just to avoid having to cross over into the Atlantic Division, the Admirals have nothing to feel ashamed of in playing this series so tightly. The hard work and character of this Admirals team is worthy of mention, and the team and organization have come such a long way in 4 seasons since the Lightning started their affiliation with Norfolk.
Coincidentally, the East's crossover team, Binghamton, just knocked off Manchester in Game 7 to advance to the Atlantic Division final against Portland. One wonders what shape a Norfolk/Manchester series might have taken if Norfolk hadn't beaten Connecticut to close the regular season.
The big question now is what this Norfolk Admirals team will look like next season, with several of their older players facing contract decisions and several of the Lightning's best young prospects ticketed for Virginia next season.
Will veterans like Marc-Antoine Pouliot, Chris Durno, Mike Vernace, Mathieu Roy, and Troy Milam be back with the team next year? What about long-time pros like Blair Jones, Mike Angelidis, Mattias Ritola, and Vladimir Mihalik? Mihalik and Ritola just finished their 4th years of pro hockey and Jones and Angelidis finished their 5th. Many of these players will surely have opportunities to play in European leagues next season. We know Johan Harju will, for instance, and the question is whether Johan will stay in North America after a disappointing second half. And will Kevin Quick's time in the Lightning organization be over as well?
Conversely, the Admirals will need to free up spots for several of the Lightning's top prospects. Carter Ashton and Charles Landry have already made appearances for the club this season in the playoffs. Richard Panik and Tyler Johnson seem like locks to be in Norfolk next season, too.
Next season could be a big change for the Admirals organization, as the last vestiges of previous regimes pass on. Change is inevitable for a minor league club, but the Admirals seem destined for even more change than is the norm. The good news is that they seem to have good goaltending locked down and even better coaching after a successful inaugural campaign by Head Coach Jon Cooper and assistant Mike Flanagan along with player development consultant Steve Thomas. This group seems to have taken a decent foundation laid by earlier teams and made it even stronger this year, and that foundation can help the new Admirals grow to be even more successful than this year's edition, in time. Look at how well guys like Mark Barberio and Radko Gudas took to the league this season. It portends good things.
Box score from TheAHL.com.
Shorthanded Admirals can't quite get over the hump.
Series Tied at 2-2
Dustin Tokarski allowed 4 goals on 33 shots for the loss.
WBS Potter, (1) (Sill, Wagner), 4:48
NOR Harju, (1) (Pouliot, Fornataro), 16:04
WBS Strait, (1) (Sterling, Vitale), 2:38
NOR Pouliot, (3) (Mihalik, Fornataro), 13:25
WBS Craig, (1) (Lerg, Sterling), 18:17 (PP)
WBS Vitale, (1) (Collins, Potter), 15:38
Marc-Antoine Pouliot was named the game's second star.
Norfolk was allowed to insert Alex Hutchings in the lineup and they added Charles Landry, but they were still without 6 of their best forwards due to injuries and recalls. They may get one or both of Mattias Ritola and/or Blair Jones back for Game Five and with Tri-City being eliminated last night, there's the possibility of adding Carter Ashton to the lineup. Maybe they can get Angelidis or Berry back too? We'll see.
Game Five seems like a must-win, and the Admirals need as many hands on deck as possible.
Box score from TheAHL.com.
The Tampa Bay Lightning reassigned defenseman Charles Landry to the Norfolk Admirals from Montreal of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, Lightning Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced today.
Landry, 5-foot-11, 187 pounds, appeared in 57 games with the Montreal Juniors this season, 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.
A 19-year-old native of Napierville, Quebec, Landry has played in 234 QMJHL games between Montreal and the Drummondville Voltigeurs. He has registered 22 goals and 96 points during his career. He has also skated in 43 post-season games, amassing six goals and 12 points.
Originally undrafted, Landry was signed to a three-year, entry-level contract by the Lightning on September 15, 2010. He represented the Lightning at the 2010 Traverse City NHL Prospects Tournament as an invitee.