Another draft has come and gone in Lightningland and the NFL-Draft-trained masses are expecting a grade and a winner or loser label.
Not happening here, sorry. There are few things as meaningless as draft grades the day after a draft. Reactions now to a draft will be completely different in five years, but you already knew that.
That soapbox aside, we can look at what the Lightning did this weekend and compare it to our system pre-draft wish list for player position and player types. Of course, Lightning Director of Scouting Al Murray said the club doesn’t pay attention to positions. He also said we wouldn't believe him.
“We don’t care where you play, just that you play the way we want you to play,” he told Lightning Radio.
TAMPA BAY – The Tampa Bay Lightning have re-signed forward Mike Angelidis to a one-year, two-way contract today, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced.
Angelidis, 30, skated in three games with Tampa Bay last season, recording 12 penalty minutes. He also played in 64 games for the Syracuse Crunch in 2014-15, recording 20 goals and 38 points while serving as the team’s captain. Angelidis ranked third on the Crunch for both goals and points, while leading the team with 138 penalty minutes. He has been captain of the Crunch since the beginning of the 2012-13 season.
Earlier today, the Lightning's AHL affiliate Syracuse Crunch announced the signing of minor league veteran defenseman Joey Mormina had re-signed a one-year contract with the Crunch.
The Canadian Hockey League Import Draft got underway today, with two rounds slated for all Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, Ontario Hockey League, and Western Hockey League teams.
New Lightning prospect Jonne Tammela was selected by OHL Peterborough in first round, 15th overall. The Lightning's fourth round pick in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft will take his tenacity and skill to the OHL, joining fellow import Dominik Masin and newly selected Matt Spencer with the Petes. Tammela played in the SM-Liiga in Finland against men for a good portion of last season, where teenagers are normally used as checking liners. Moving to Ontario with the Petes will give him scoring line opportunities to further his offensive game, which he said he models after Chicago's Patrick Kane.
AHL Syracuse could be in the cards for Tammela after this coming season because he was drafted out of Finland and not the CHL. There is no AHL age restriction in that case. Technically, Masin could play in Syracuse this season because he was drafted out of the Czech Republic before coming to Peterborough last season. Each CHL team is allowed to dress two import players, and with Russian Artem Vladimirov returning home to the MHL, that opens up a spot for Tammela. It also indicates the Petes are expecting Masin to return to Ontario, since they passed on their second Import Draft selection.
Masin suffered significant facial injuries last winter and had surgery to repair an orbital bone. He is observing Lightning Development Camp this week. Tammela is participating in the camp.
TAMPA BAY – The Tampa Bay Lightning have re-signed defenseman Andrej Sustr to a two-year, one-way contract, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced today.
Sustr, 24, played in 72 games with the Lightning this past season, recording 13 assists and 34 penalty minutes. The Plzen, Czech Republic native set career highs for games played, assists, plus/minus (+10) and penalty minutes. Sustr also appeared in 26 Stanley Cup Playoff games for the Lightning, registering one goal and two points. He scored his first career postseason goal in Game 2 against the Detroit Red Wings in the first round of the playoffs.
The 6-foot-7, 220-pound defenseman has skated in 117 career NHL games, all with the Bolts over the past three seasons, collecting one goal and 21 points. Sustr ranked fourth on the Lightning for blocked shots with 84 during the 2014-15 season. He also set the Lightning franchise record for best plus/minus (+7) in a playoff series in the first round of the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs against the Red Wings.
Sustr was originally signed by the Lightning as a free agent out of the University of Nebraska-Omaha on March 21, 2013
The Tampa Bay Lightning announced the schedule and roster for the team’s annual Development Camp, to be held from June 30 through July 4 at the Brandon Ice Sports Forum. The roster currently consists of a total of 32 players, 20 forwards, eight defensemen and four goaltenders. The camp is free and open to the public.
The camp will feature some of the Lightning’s top prospects competing in on and off-ice workouts, skating drills and will culminate with the annual 3-on-3 tournament on Friday and Saturday. Once again, Saturday’s portion of the tournament will be streamed LIVE on TampaBayLightning.com.
All nine draft picks from this past weekend’s NHL Draft in Sunrise, Florida will be in attendance, including second-round selects Mitchell Stephens and Matt Spencer.
The Tampa Bay Lightning have issued qualifying offers to five players, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced today. Receiving qualifying offers were forward Carter Ashton, Vladislav Namestnikov, and Philippe Paradis along with defensemen Andrej Sustr and Luke Witkowski
The deadline for NHL clubs to issue offers is today. By issuing qualifying offers to the aforementioned players, the Lightning are given the right of the first refusal or draft choice compensation should the player sign an offer sheet with another NHL club.
Players not receiving a qualifying offer include forwards Cody Kunyk, Dalton Smith, and Danick Gauthier along with defensemen Mark Barberio and Daniel Milan. These five players are now unrestricted free agents.
TAMPA BAY –The Tampa Bay Lightning have re-signed right wing Mike Blunden to a one-year, two-way contract today, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced.
Blunden, 6-foot-4, 216 pounds, played in two games with the Lightning last season, recording two penalty minutes. He played in 33 games with Tampa Bay’s top minor league affiliate, the Syracuse Crunch, in 2014-15, recording 13 goals and 22 points. Despite a limited number of games he ranked tied for sixth on the Crunch for goals.
TAMPA BAY – The Tampa Bay Lightning have signed forward Jonathan Marchessault to a one-year, two-way contract for the 2015-16 season, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced today. Additionally, the team signed forward Brian Hart to a three-year, two-way NHL contract.
Marchessault, 24, played in two Stanley Cup Playoff games with the Lightning this past postseason. He also appeared in two games with the Bolts during the 2014-15 regular season, recording one goal. Marchessault scored his first career NHL goal on April 11, 2015 in the Lightning’s regular season finale against the Boston Bruins. The Cap-Rouge, Quebec native also played in 68 AHL games with the Syracuse Crunch last season, ranking sixth in the league for assists with 43.
Hart, 21, skated in 37 games with the Harvard Crimson during the 2014-15 season, recording seven goals and 17 points. The Cumberland, Maine native ranked sixth on the Crimson for goals and tied for seventh for points. Hart has skated in 98 career games with Harvard over three seasons, recording 18 goals and 50 points
Name: Kristian Oldham
Weight: 203 lbs.
Club: Omaha (USHL)
Omaha (USHL), 33 GP, 21-6-5, 1 SO, 2.49 GAA, .908 sv%