Downie Makes His Debut

By Corine Gatti
Either they loved him or they hated winger/bruiser Steve Downie in Philadelphia. According to several postings and reactions of both Flyer fans and the American Hockey League Phantoms’ bloggers – most fans adored the 5-foot, 10-inch Newmarket, Ontario native. Some posted that they feared him on the opposing side after he was traded from Philadelphia to the Tampa Bay Lightning on November 7. At only 21-years of age, Downie has already amassed quite a reputation for seeing the penalty box and taking lengthy suspensions. The National Hockey League benched him for 20-games for his hit on Ottawa’s Dean McAmmond during a preseason game with the Flyers last September. Downie's past has not eluded him. The American Hockey League suspended the winger for three games Wednesday after smashing Worchester’s defenseman Kyle McLaren from behind during the second period. Downie has only played six games with Norfolk.

The Downie package does have an upside. The right wing can play both sides of the rink. He is a strong skater and has the agility to put offensive numbers on the board, despite his frame. After the trade from the Philadelphia organization, Downie joined the Norfolk Admirals on their two-week road trip. He was paired with Zenon Konopka and notched three points during his first week.

ECHL Game Night 11/21: Everblades at Lynx

Chris Lawrence and Kevin Quick were scoreless as the Lynx lost 2-1 to the Florida Everblades at James Brown Arena in Augusta. Riku Helenius backed up goaltender Mike Brodeur, who stopped 40 of 42 Blades shots. Helenius will likely get the Saturday night rematch against Florida, with Brodeur make in net Sunday afternoon. All signs indicate that Helenius has lost the #1 spot to Brodeur.

Florida 2 @ Augusta 1
G Riku Helenius: did not play
D Kevin Quick: 0-0-0; -1; 0 PIM; 0 SOG
F Chris Lawrence: 0-0-0; E; 0 PIM; 1 SOG

Augusta falls to 5-6-1-1.

NHL Game Night 11/21: Predators at Lightning



Mike Smith allowed 1 goal on 35 shots for the win. Just don't ask him to win a shootout for you, and he's good to go.

First Period
04:57 TB Lecavalier (8), (Malone, Stamkos)(PP)
07:05 TB Lecavalier (9), (St. Louis)
10:40 NSH Tootoo (3), (Zanon)
12:17 TB Recchi (4), (Malik, Malone)

Second Period
06:32 TB Prospal (4), (Malone, Stamkos)

Third Period

Congratulations to Rick Tocchet on his first NHL win as a head coach. Now go get number two.

Steven Stamkos had 2 helpers and was +1 in 11:58 with 3 shots and 1 hit. He was also 0-for-3 on draws. Tonight's game was the second multi-point night of the young man's career. Now go get number three.

Box score and extended statistics from

AHL Game Night 11/21: Admirals at Falcons

A wild west (Massachusetts) shootout.


Mike McKenna allowed 7 goals on 33 shots, including a super soft game winning goal, for the loss. He was every bit as terrible as his stat line suggests. McKenna has allowed 4 or more goals in 3 of his 4 starts this season. Now, it doesn't help that the Admirals' defense has been horrible. However, if this keeps up, you wonder if the Lightning organization will give the green light to take a peek at Riku Helenius.

First Period
SPR Brule, (6) (Bina), 8:54 (PP)
SPR Corazzini, (2) (Brule), 8:59 (PP)
SPR Peckham, (3) (Potulny, Schremp), 13:07
NOR Segal, (8) (Szczechura, Smolenak), 18:00 (PP)

Second Period
NOR Bochenski, (5) (Smith, Heward), 1:42 (PP)
SPR Bekar, (4) (Bisaillon, Spurgeon), 3:35
NOR Heward, (5) (Smith, Hutchinson), 6:44 (PP)
SPR Lerg, (2) (Schremp, Potulny), 8:38
NOR Konopka, (6) (Heward, Jones), 12:11 (PP)
NOR Kearns, (4) (Boyle, Jones), 14:23 (PP)

Third Period
NOR Szczechura, (10) (Boyle, Hutchinson), 5:39
SPR Peckham, (4) (Potulny, Bisaillon), 8:38 (PP)
SPR Spurgeon, (1) (Lefebvre), 12:50

If Jamie Heward decides to jet to Europe, I'm telling you, this Admirals team is so in trouble. He was named the game's third star.

Vladimir Mihalik was benched midway through the second period for poor decision making with the puck.

Box score from

Downie Gets Three Game Suspension

The American Hockey League today announced that Tampa right wing prospect Steve Downie has been suspended for three (3) games as a result of his actions in a game at Worcester on Nov. 19. Downie was accessed a major penalty for boarding Shark's defenseman Kyle McLaren during the 2nd period of Wednesday night's game, and subsequently fought Worcester's Jason Demers after the hit.

Downie was suspended under the provisions of AHL Rule 29.1 (supplementary discipline).

Downie will miss Norfolk's games tonight (Nov. 21) at Springfield, Saturday (Nov. 22) at Lowell and Wednesday (Nov. 26) vs. Springfield.

Koci Reclaimed Off Waivers

The Tampa Bay Lightning have claimed overaged left wing prospect David Koci off of waivers from the St. Louis Blues organization. Koci was lost to the Blues via waivers earlier in the season when the Lightning waived Koci with the intention of reassigning him Norfolk (AHL).

According the Erik Erlendsson of the Tampa Tribune, there were numerous claims registered for Koci, which means the Lightning cannot reassign him to Norfolk without placing him back on waivers.

Niskala Reassigned to Frolunda (SEL)

This bit of news went overlooked last Friday on trash day, but the Tampa Bay Lightning reassigned overaged prospect defenseman Janne Niskala to Frolunda of the Swedish Elite League on November 14.

Niskala cleared waivers on November 6 and had been loaned to the Norfolk Admirals while the Lightning awaited the European leagues to return from a break in play, but Niskala did not report to the Admirals per an arrangement with Lightning GM Brian Lawton. Niskala had a clause in his contract that allowed him to be reassigned to a European team in the event he could not stick with the NHL roster. The signing of free agent defensemen Marek Malik resulted in Niskala being a consistent healthy scratch, promptly the player to ask Lawton for a European reassignment.

Niskala joins a Frolunda team that earlier in the SEL season released fellow Bolt overaged defensive prospect Andreas Holmqvist, who has subsequently joined Djurgardens.

N.A. Juniors Game Night: 11/19

WHL scores from Fadden, Tyrell, Tokarski, and Wright...

Finnish Jr. A Scores

Matias Sointu was still out in Ilves Jr. A's 6-2 loss to Blues Jr. A.

Matias Sointu was still out as HPK Jr. A annihilated Ilves Jr. A 7-1.

Matias Sointu was still out as Ilves Jr. A fell to Jokerit Jr. A 2-1 in overtime.

AHL Game Night 11/19: Admirals at Sharks

The road is a tough place to make up ground.


Karri Ramo allowed 4 goals on 32 shots for the loss. His .890 season save percentage is starting to become a bit of an eyesore.

First Period
NOR Szczechura, (9) (Smolenak, Bochenski), 1:30
NOR Smith, (3) (Hutchinson, Bochenski), 6:05 (PP)
WOR Cavanagh, (7) (Demers, Vesce), 14:20

Second Period
WOR Moore, (1) (Demers, Zalewski), 0:32 (PP)

Third Period
WOR Larose, (8) (Demers, Armstrong), 4:10
WOR Desjardins, (2) (Buckley, McLaren), 9:55
NOR Heward, (4) (Szczechura, Downie), 19:13

Paul Szczechura now has 9 goals and 20 points in 17 games. As of this moment, he's tied for 5th in the AHL in scoring.

Box score from

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