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Playoff Taxi Squad, Rumble and Andreychuk

The St. Pete Times is reporting that the Lightning have summoned several of its players from Springfield to join the club as its taxi squad for the playoffs. [url=nick-tarnasky]Nick Tarnasky[/url], [url=darren-reid]Darren Reid[/url], Norm Milley, Jason Jaspers, Zdenek Blatny, [url=marek-kvapil]Marek Kvapil[/url], Mitch Fritz, [url=doug-obrien]Doug O'Brien[/url] and [url=gerald-coleman]Gerald Coleman[/url] will practice in parallel with the team as the playoffs go forward. In the article, Tom Jones also states that Darren Rumble will stay in Springfield as an assistant next season but that he is not a candidate for head coach. In addition, GM Jay Feaster sinks the sentimental idea of Dave Andreychuk becoming Falcons head coach because the team is looking for an experienced bench boss and because Andreychuk simply has no interest in coaching. If the Lightning are looking to promote from within, that points to only two people: Bill Barber (unlikely) or Johnstown head man Frank Anzalone.

Lightning Playoff Schedule

The NHL [url=http://www.nhl.com/news/2006/04/269288.htm]has released its schedule[/url] for the first round of the 2006 Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Lightning's first game will take place Friday at 7 pm in Ottawa. Game 1: Friday, April 21st 7:00 PM Tampa Bay at Ottawa CBC Game 2: Sunday, April 23rd 6:00 PM Tampa Bay at Ottawa CBC, OLN Game 3: Tuesday, April 25th 7:00 PM Ottawa at Tampa Bay OLN, CBC Game 4: Thursday, April 27th 7:00 PM Ottawa at Tampa Bay OLN, CBC Game 5: Saturday, April 29th 7:00 PM Tampa Bay at Ottawa CBC, OLN (If necessary) Game 6: Monday, May 1st 7:00 PM Ottawa at Tampa Bay OLN, CBC (If necessary) Game 7: Wednesday, May 3rd 7:00 PM Tampa Bay at Ottawa CBC (If necessary) Ottawa swept the regular season series 4-0.

Lightning Likely to Hold 15th Pick

Barring the team repeating as Stanley Cup champions, the Lightning will pick 15th overall in the June draft. [url=http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/standings?season=2006&group=league&column=points&order=false&seasontype=2]A quick look at the standings reveals[/url] the Lightning with the least amount of points amongst the teams that made the postseason, placing them just outside the 14 team draft lottery. For those who are wondering, the Lightning [url=http://www.freewebs.com/eggmanandwalrus/draft_picks.txt]currently hold 4 picks in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft.[/url] They will have their 1st round, 3rd round, 6th round and 7th round selections. The club traded its 2nd, 4th and 5th round selections in seperate deals with Philadelphia, San Jose and Dallas last year. Bolt Prospects will profile players we feel might be available at the Lightning's selection during the summer as draft day nears.

Game Night 4/18: Capitals at Lightning

The Lightning may live to regret having treated this game like a preseason tilt. WAS-4 TB-1 From the lack of any significant effort along the boards to John Tortorella's decision to rotate his goaltenders mid game, this had the feel of an exhibition. Problem is, no one told the Caps. As a consequence, the Lightning lost the opportunity to move into the 7th seed in the East due to Montreal's loss to New Jersey tonight. Instead, the Lightning are now the #8 seed and rather than playing Carolina they will have an opponent they don't match up as well with: the Ottawa Senators. Ryan Craig finished off the regular season of his rookie campaign off with a power play assist. Paul Ranger was -1 in 22:07 with 3 shots on goal, 1 hit and 3 blocked shots. Timo Helbling, filling in for a resting Pavel Kubina, was -1 in 16:20 with 1 shot, 3 hits and 3 blocked shots. Craig was even in 15:27 with 4 shots on goal. Evgeny Artyukhin was even in 9:09 with 1 shot and 1 hit. In addition to playoff matchups, by night's end we should have a good idea of what pick the Lightning will receive in the June entry draft. Game sheet from [url=http://www.nhl.com/scores/htmlreports/20052006/GS021228.HTM]NHL.com.[/url]

HPK/Assat Game Two

Miika Wiikman cooled off considerably today as Assat knocked off HPK 5-4 in overtime to knot their SM-liiga championship series at 1-1. Wiikman stopped 27 of 32 shots faced in the game. The loss possibly opens the door for [url=karri-ramo]Karri Ramo[/url] to start in game three.
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