North American Juniors

Bolts at World Championships

This week it was announced Lightning prospect and Norfolk Admiral Richard Panik will represent Slovakia at the 2010 World Hockey Championship being held May 7-23 in Germany, reports the Belleville Bulls, Panik's former OHL team. Panik previously represented Slovakia at the past two World Junior Hockey Championships.

Fellow Lightning prospect and Norfolk Admiral Vladimir Mihalik is also suiting up for Slovakia, who lost 2-0 to Latvia in exhibition play earlier this week. Lightning property Martins Karsums scored for Latvia.

Panik led Slovakia in scoring at the 2010 World Junior Hockey Championship with six goals and two assists in six games played. At the 2009 World Junior Hockey Championship, Panik recorded two goals and five points in seven games played. He also led Slovakia in scoring at the 2008 World Under 18 Hockey Championship.

Panik was acquired by the Bulls in January in a trade with the Windsor Spitfires. In 27 games played with Belleville, Panik scored 12 times while adding 11 assists and 36 penalty minutes. Following the conclusion of his season with the Bulls, Panik joined the AHL’s Norfolk Admirals where he earned one assist in five games played.

The Martin, Slovakia native was selected in the second round of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft by the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Lightning representatives at the 2010 World Championships include:

Kirill Gotovets, D, Belarus
Steven Stamkos, C, Canada
Steve Downie, W, Canada
Martins Karsums, W, Latvia
Vasily Koshechkin, G, Russia
Vladimir Mihalik, D, Slovakia
Richard Panik, C/W, Slovakia
Johan Harju, C/W, Sweden
Victor Hedman, D, Sweden
Mike Lundin, D, USA

Players to watch:

Nino Neiderreiter, W, Switzerland: A strong possibility for the Lightning at No.6 in this summer's NHL draft.
Vadim Krasnoslobodtsev, W, Kazakhstan: Rumors have linked the 26 year-old to the Lightning. Could be a free agent signing.

Former Lightning draft picks in the tournament:

Evgeni Artyukhin, W, Russia
Marek Kvapil, W, Czech Republic
Ilya Solarev, W, Kazakhstan
Alexander Svitov, C, Russia

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 5-4-10

QMJHL

Moncton Wildcats 4 @ St. John Sea Dogs 6
QMJHL Finals, Game 3. Moncton leads Best of 7 Series 2-1
D Mark Barberio, MCT: 0-2-2, E, 2 PIM, 2 SOG
Playoff Totals: 18 GP, 5-15-20, +8, 12 PIM
Season Totals: 65 GP, 17-43-60, +39, 72 PIM

St. John raced out to 2-0 and 5-1 leads to help them to a big 6-4 in Game 3 of the QMJHL Finals to make it a series again. Moncton had won their team-record last eight playoff road games. Barberio has five assists so far this series. Game 4 is Friday in Moncton.

Draft Watch
Moncton defenseman Brandon Gormley, a possibility for the Lightning at No.6 in the summer’s draft, was scoreless in Game 3. Gormley Playoff Totals: 18 GP, 2-15-17, +14, 2 PIM.

OHL

Barrie Colts 2 @ Windsor Spitfires 6
OHL Finals, Game 4. Windsor wins Best of 7 Series 4-0
LW/C Alex Hutchings, BAR: 0-1-1, -1, 4 PIM (tripping, hooking)
Playoff Totals: 13 GP, 2-8-10, +4, 12 PIM
Season Totals: 68 GP, 47-34-81, +44, 58 PIM

Hutchings set up the game’s first goal when he found Luke Pither on the power play, but it wasn’t going to be Barrie’s night as Windsor scored the game’s final four goals and clinched the Robertson Cup with a stunning sweep of top-ranked Barrie. Barring a surprise, this ends the junior career of Hutchings, who is set to get a contract from Tampa Bay this spring and likely be in AHL Norfolk next season. Hutchings had a somewhat forgettable playoffs for his standards, scoring only twice in 13 games and only registering an assist in the finals. He also battled a groin injury that caused him to miss an entire series, however. He did set personal highs for playoff games played with 13, assists (8) and points (10). He had three goals in five playoff games last year.

If this was indeed Hutchings’ last OHL game, he finishes his career with a combined (regular season and playoffs) 116 goals, 114 assists, and 230 points in 256 games.

Draft Watch
Windsor defenseman Cam Fowler, who will likely go at No. 3 or 4 in this summer’s draft, was First Star in Game 4. He had two goals and an assist in the game to increase his playoff totals to 3-11-14. Taylor Hall, who will go No.1 or 2, also had two goals and an assist in Game 4, giving him 17-18-35 in 19 playoff games. He did not win the Wayne Gretzky Trophy as playoff MVP, however, as that went to Adam Henrique (Devils 3/08), who had 20-5-25 to take the honors.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 5-2-10

QMJHL

St. John Sea Dogs 3 @ Moncton Wildcats 9
QMJHL Finals, Game 2. Moncton leads Best of 7 Series 2-0
D Mark Barberio, MCT: 0-2-2, +2, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Playoff Totals: 17 GP, 5-13-18, +8, 10 PIM
Season Totals: 65 GP, 17-43-60, +39, 72 PIM

Moncton held at home in Game 2, destroying St. John 9-3. It was the first time the Sea Dog’s franchise has allowed at least eight goals in a playoff game. Barberio is tied for the league lead in playoff points among defensemen with the Sea Dogs’ Simon Despress (Penguins 1/09). Game 3 is Tuesday in St. John.

Draft Watch
Moncton defenseman Brandon Gormley scored had two assists for the Wildcats. He was also plus-1 in the game. Gormley Playoff Totals: 17 GP, 2-15-17, +14, 2 PIM.

OHL

Barrie Colts 2 @ Windsor Spitfires 5
OHL Finals, Game 3. Windsor leads Best of 7 Series 3-0
LW/C Alex Hutchings, BAR: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM
Series Totals: 3 GP, 0-0-0, -3, 0 PIM
Playoff Totals: 12 GP, 2-7-9, +5, 8 PIM
Season Totals: 68 GP, 47-34-81, +44, 58 PIM

Windsor won their seventh straight game, defeating the Colts 5-2 at home. Barrie is one loss away from being eliminated. Hutchings has not registered a point in the series. Game 4 is Tuesday in Windsor.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 4-30-10

QMJHL

Moncton Wildcats 5 @ St. John Sea Dogs 1
QMJHL Finals, Game 1. Moncton leads Best of 7 Series 1-0
D Mark Barberio, MCT: 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Playoff Totals: 16 GP, 5-11-16, +6, 10 PIM
Season Totals: 65 GP, 17-43-60, +39, 72 PIM

Moncton stole home ice advantage by winning Game 1 of the QMJHL Finals against St. John, 5-1. Barberio had a primary assist. Game 2 is Sunday.

Draft Watch
Moncton defenseman Brandon Gormley scored for the second consecutive game. He was also plus-2 in the game. Gormley Playoff Totals: 16 GP, 2-13-15, +13, 2 PIM.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 4-29-10

OHL

Windsor Spitfires 5 @ Barrie Colts 4
OHL Finals, Game 2. Windsor leads Best of 7 Series 2-0
LW/C Alex Hutchings, BAR: 0-0-0, -2, 0 PIM
Playoff Totals: 10 GP, 2-7-9, +6, 8 PIM
Season Totals: 68 GP, 47-34-81, +44, 58 PIM

Windsor took both the Finals’ early games in Barrie and will return home with a 2-0 series lead. The Spits jumped out to 3-1 and 4-2 leads in Game 2 and held on for the win, being outshot 37-22. Hutchings is scoreless and minus-2 so far in the series. Game 3 is Sunday.

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