AHL Game Night: 12-10-14 Crunch at Falcons

Vasilevskiy rising.

SYR-2
SPR-0

Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped all 26 shots he faced for his second straight shutout. He's now 7-3-3 with 2 SO, a 2.44 GAA, and a .914 sv%. He's given up a whopping 1 goal in his last 3 starts, and with Gudlevskis struggling Andrei now appears to clearly be the #1 goaltender in Syracuse.

First Period
SYR Nesterov, (3) (Angelidis, Namestnikov), 18:01

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
SYR Blunden, (3) , 19:13 (EN)

Vasilevskiy, Nikita Nesterov, and Vladislav Namestnikov were the game's three stars. Since being sent down to Syracuse, Namestnikov has averaged 2 points a game with 2 goals and 6 points in 3 games.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

KHL Game Day: 12-10-14

Novosibirsk 5 vs. Khanty-Mansiysk 2
Nikita Gusev, Khanty-Mansiysk, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season totals: 33 GP, 11-7-18, +3, 10 PIM

Nikita Gusev was scoreless in 17:14 of ice time in Yugra's crushing 5-2 loss to Novosibirsk. Sibir was led by 1 goal and 3 points from ex-Kings pick Patrik Hersley.

Mytischi 6 vs. Ufa 1
Dmitry Korobov, Mytischi, 0-1-1, +4, 2 PIM, 0 SOG
Season totals: 22 GP, 1-3-4, +1, 20 PIM

Dmitry Korobov had a helper and was +4 in 16:41 in Mytischi's 6-1 win over Ufa. Ex-Lightning pick Alexei Glukhov, who wears an "A" for Ufa, had a helper in defeat.

Bratislava 3 vs. Astana 2
Jaroslav Janus, Bratislava, Win, 36/38, 2.00 GAA, .947 sv%
Season totals: 18 GP, 5-10-3, 2 SO, 2.78 GAA, .894 sv%

Ex-Sabres 2nd rounder Milan Bartovic potted the GWG for Slovan in their 3-2 victory against Astana. Ex-Lightning forward Brandon Bochenski had a goal in defeat for Astana.

Namestnikov Making Most of Return to Crunch


By Jeremy Houghtaling

Vlad Namestnikov took less than one minute to show up on the scoresheet in his return to Syracuse.

The center, assigned to the Crunch last week to get more ice time after initially making the Tampa Bay Lightning out of training camp, scored a power play goal 59 seconds into his first game back and finished with two goals and three assists in a pair of weekend wins for the Crunch.

Namestnikov understands the reasons for being sent back to the American Hockey League, and is continuing to work on improving his game to return to the Lightning.

“I’m trying to stay positive,” Namestnikov said. “If I keep working and keep improving, I think good things will happen.”

NHL Game Night: 12-9-14 Capitals at Lightning

Lightning in a mini-funk.

WSH-5
TB-3

Ben Bishop allowed 4 goals on 35 shots for the loss. Unlike the Columbus game, I didn't feel any of the goals he allowed were soft. I can't say the same for the play of the defense in front of him.

First Period
0:40 WSH Ovechkin (13), (Wilson, Carlson)
13:49 TB Boyle (6), (Hedman, Brown)
14:23 WSH Niskanen (2), (Backstrom, Johansson)(PP)

Second Period
0:47 TB Stamkos (17), (Callahan, Hedman)
4:36 WSH Laich (3), (Ward)

Third Period
10:52 WSH Brouwer (7), (Johansson, Kuznetsov)
19:56 TB Filppula (5), (Johnson, Hedman)
19:59 WSH Ovechkin (14), (Backstrom)(EN)

Victor Hedman was the game's third star.

I don't want to sit here and say the sky is falling. The Lightning did outshoot Washington 36-35 and were it not for A.) Holtby, B.) A greasy goal off an unfortunate bounce of a centering pass that ended up in Stralman's skates, and C.) An inept Lightning PP in the Second Period, this game could've had a dramatically different outcome. The issue right now is the Lightning having an uneven effort level shift-to-shift, lack of sharpness in passing and positioning shift-to-shift, and a power play that looks devoid of an identity and a clue right now. The first two things can sort themselves out with a few good practices. That last thing? There's a young man who wears 27 who was serving popcorn tonight who's absolutely lethal as a playmaker in open ice on the PP. Just saying. It's time.

This one hurts. On paper, you'd have expected to get about 3 points out of these last couple of games, which would've allowed the Lightning to build a nice stash of insurance points and fortify their position in the division and in the conference. It's a heck of a time for a little losing streak, and now they'll have to rally and get at least a point out of the Carolina game just to make sure they get 12 points out of this 10-game segment of the season. It's a big-time wasted opportunity with harder parts of the schedule still to come.

Cedric Paquette had 4 penalty minutes, 4 shots, 2 hits, and 1 blocked shot in 11:56. The extra roughing minor he took in the First Period led to Niskanen's momentum crushing PP goal, but I kind of didn't mind Paquette giving the business to the larger Wilson, who was trying to pick on a rookie. I have a hard time criticizing a young man for defending himself.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

Liiga Game Day: 12-9-14

KalPa 4 vs. HPK 1
Saku Salminen, HPK, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season totals: 16 GP, 1-3-4, +1, 2 PIM

Saku Salminen was scoreless in 15:20 of ice time in HPK's 4-1 loss to KalPa. Ex-Blues pick Michal Birner had a goal in the win for KalPa.

KHL Game Day: 12-9-14

Magnitogorsk 4 vs. St. Petersburg 3 (OT)
Vasily Koshechkin, Magnitogorsk, OT Win, 24/27, 2.91 GAA, .889 sv%
Season totals: 31 GP, 21-4-4, 3 SO, 1.62 GAA, .939 sv%

Ex-Jackets pick Sergei Mozyakin had 1 goal and 2 assists, including a helper on the OT winner, in Magnitka's 4-3 win over SKA.

KHL Game Day: 12-8-14

Novokuznetsk 0 vs. Khanty-Mansiysk 1
Nikita Gusev, Khanty-Mansiysk, 1-0-1, +1, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season totals: 32 GP, 11-7-18, +3, 10 PIM

Nikita Gusev's goal was all Yugra got and all they needed to defeat Novokuznetsk 1-0. Gusev played 21:48 in the victory.

Bratislava 3 vs. Omsk 5
Jaroslav Janus, Bratislava, Loss, 20/25, 5.02 GAA, .800 sv%
Season totals: 17 GP, 4-10-3, 2 SO, 2.83 GAA, .889 sv%

Ex-NHLer Alexander Perezhogin had a pair of goals for Omsk in their 5-3 win over Slovan Bratislava. Ex-Lightning prospect Michal Sersen had a helper in defeat for Slovan.

Prospect of the Week: 12-8-14

We continue our Bolt Prospect of the Week award, an honor (virtually) given to one Tampa Bay Lightning prospect for his recent contributions on and off the ice.

The Bolt Prospect of the Week for December 8, 2014 is … Brayden Point, Moose Jaw Warriors (WHL – Canada).

With the success of smaller players in the NHL and its recent transformation into a speed and skill league, it’s rather dumbfounding that Brayden Point fell to the 2014 draft’s third round. But there was Point, a prolific producer with captain-worthy character and high-end hockey sense, sitting at No. 79 with the Lightning just one pick away at 80.

The Lightning may preach patience with prospects, but they showed none of it in this instance.

Juniors Game Night: 12-7-14

Ontario Hockey League

Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 6 @ Sarnia Sting 7 (SO)

D Anthony DeAngelo, SAR: 1-1-2, +1, 2 PIM
Season totals: 25 GP, 8-24-32, E, 56 PIM
2013-14 totals: 51 GP, 15-56-71, -34, 90 PIM

The CHL’s sixth ranked team outshot Sarnia 41-20, but Anthony DeAngelo and the Sting won in a shootout, 7-6. DeAngelo, who has points in five straight games and 10 of his past 11, scored the first Sarnia goal of the game, setting off a teddy bear toss.

Western Hockey League

Moose Jaw Warriors 3 @ Calgary Hitmen 8

C Brayden Point, MJ: 0-1-1, -2, 0 PIM
Season totals: 28 GP, 16-25-41, +10, 19 PIM
2013-14 totals: 72 GP, 36-55-91, -27, 53 PIM

D Ben Thomas, CAL: Did not play (injured)
Season totals: 24 GP, 3-11-13, +4, 12 PIM
2013-14 totals: 72 GP, 7-24-31, +11, 39 PIM

Point extended his point streak to 11 games with an assist, and Moose Jaw was tied with Calgary 3-3 entering the third period, but the Hitmen exploded for five goals on a whopping 26 shots in the middle frame to defeat the Warriors, 8-3. There was no scoring in the third period. Ben Thomas remains out with a lower body injury.

KHL Game Day: 12-7-14

Mytischi 4 vs. Dinamo Riga 1
Dmitry Korobov, Mytischi, 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM, 0 SOG
Season totals: 21 GP, 1-2-3, -3, 18 PIM

Dmitry Korobov had a minor penalty for hooking in 22:00 of ice time as Mytischi crushed Riga 4-1. Ex-Devils pick Petr Vrana had a goal in the victory for Mytischi.

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