Team Canada released their roster today for their selection camp for the U-20 World Junior Championships, and Lightning draft pick and Prince George defenseman Andy Rogers has been invited. The camp will run from December 11th to December 16th with a series of exhibition tune up games to follow. Rogers is considered somewhat of a long shot to make Canada's final roster.
HPK and Karpat squared off today in a marquee matchup between the #1 and #2 teams in the Finnish SM-liiga. The high stakes contest for first place in the league was the second of a back to back pair of games between the two squads. In the first, on Saturday, Miika Wiikman helped defeat Karpat 2-1 in overtime. Today, his tandem mate Karri Ramo bested Wiikman defeating Karpat 2-1 in regulation, stopping 25 of 26 shots for the victory. The young netminder's record now improves to 4-2-3 on the season.
Lost in the last couple of weeks of hockey is the fact that as of right now the Tampa Bay Lightning have the best record of any team in the NHL over their last 10 games (8-1-1). Isn't it amazing? Especially when you think it seems like just yesterday we were lamenting a six game losing streak and the hockey media was just about getting ready to write the Tampa Bay Lightning's obituary.
And the interesting thing is: I think we'd all have to agree this club is only playing up to about 85% of its capability right now. The offense has not been anywhere near as explosive as it could be and the defense, while workmanlike on many nights allowing a miniscule amount of shots, could be tighter.
Heaven help the NHL if the Lightning finds fourth gear. It's good to be the champs.
Morgan Cey extracted a measure of revenge for last night's 7-1 blood bath stopping 33 of 37 shots faced in regulation and overtime before winning in the shootout. Justin Kelly once again led the way offensively for the Chiefs with a goal and two assists. Brady Greco had one of two Johnstown shorthanded goals in the first period.
Game sheet from ECHL.com.
I will be live blogging this during the game using the B2 Networks feed. Harlan Pratt, Marek Kvapil, Dennis Packard and Steve McLaren are the scratches for tonight's game. Gerald Coleman will be starting his third straight game.
Holy cow does the young woman doing the national anthem tonight have a great voice. I've sat through some bad ones in these minor league games, she was outstanding.