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Submitted by chad on September 9, 2006 - 07:55
Usually fans can get a good idea what the Lightning are thinking in terms of line combos by how players are arranged to start training camp scrimmages. Looking a few entries into Erik Erlendssonâ€™s blog, he lists the frontrunners for the third and fourth lines. According to Erlendsson, of the [i]Tampa Tribune[/i], the Lightning have placed Ryan Craig with Andreas Karlsson, which is of no surprise, because we've heard all off-season that they want the third line to be a scoring line and for Karlsson to help make that happen. Speculation centers around who will be the other winger on that line, with candidates including Nick Tarnasky, Rob DiMaio, Norm Milley, Darren Reid, Nikita Alexeev, Eric Perrin, and a few others. The Lightning are giving a prime opportunity to Alexeev here, it seems, as a line of Craig-Karlsson-Alexeev is set to compete in scrimmages. Reid is scheduled to play on this team in scrimmages. The other line battle fans have been mulling over is the more physical and/or offensively capable fourth line.
Submitted by pete on September 8, 2006 - 21:56
Newyorkrangers.com is reporting the Lightning prospects [url=http://www.newyorkrangers.com/pressbox/pressreleases.asp?id=2249]lost their opener in the Traverse City prospect tournament tonight 3-2 in overtime to the Rangers' prospects.[/url] [url=zbynek-hrdel]Zbynek Hrdel[/url] and [url=marek-kvapil]Marek Kvapil[/url] had the Lightning's goals. The Lightning scored both goals late to force the extra session. The Lightning prospects were outshot 34-30. [b]Update:[/b] Erik Erlendsson of the Trib [url=http://www.tboblogs.com/index.php/sports/related/C189/]makes a late blog post on the tournament.[/url] According to his post, it was not Marek Kvapil but rather [url=justin-keller]Justin Keller[/url] scoring the tying goal with 5 seconds left from [url=radek-smolenak]Radek Smolenak[/url] and [url=blair-jones]Blair Jones[/url]. [url=vladimir-mihalik]Vladimir Mihalik[/url] had an assist on Zbynek Hrdel's goal. [url=riku-helenius]Riku Helenius[/url] stopped 32 of 35 for the Lightning, according to Erlendsson. [b]Update 2:[/b] Leslie Treff of Hockey's Future also has a recap of the dayâ€™s activities. Treff's report singles out Helenius, Mihalik, and Smolenak for their good play from Tampa, and also was impressed with Tampa's own-zone coverage. Also, the [i]St. Pete Times[/i], using Wire services, says Keller got the second Lightning goal, so it appears that mystery is solved by a 2-1 count. Keller was known for his clutch goals in Kelowna the past few years, including the Memorial Cup winning goal in 2003. [b]Update 3:[/b] Word from the Lightning is that the team battled hard, then slacked off a little bit. [url=matt-smaby]Matt Smaby[/url], Mihalik, and Helenius were singled out as Tampa's top players for the game. [b]Update 4:[/b] Box score [url=http://www.redwingscentral.com/stories/2006_09/08_BoxTB_NYR.html]courtesy of Redwingscentral.com[/url].
Submitted by pete on September 8, 2006 - 13:35
[url=evgeny-artyukhin]Evgeny Artyukhin[/url] was held off the board today as Yaroslavl was beaten 3-1 by Omsk in their opening match of the season. Artyukhin, who played 72 games with the Lightning last year, signed with the Lokomotive after the Lightning failed to meet he and his agent's demands for a lucrative contract. [b]Update:[/b] Par for the course, Artyukhin did rack up 4 penalty minutes in the contest.
Submitted by pete on September 8, 2006 - 08:29
Box scores have finally been posted from Thursday's opening round of matches in the Russian Superleague: Alexei Glukhov was held scoreless in his debut for Severstal Cherepovets as they were handled easily by Metallurg Magnitogorsk. Anton But was in uniform for SKA's 3-0 win over Chelyabinsk. But was scoreless in the match. [url=vasily-koshechkin]Vasily Koshechkin[/url] got the win 4-3 as Togliatti defeated the Moscow Dynamo. Albert Vishynakov did not play for Dynamo. [url=denis-kazionov]Denis Kazionov[/url] was scoreless with 2 penalty minutes as KHK Tver defeated Ufa 3-2 in overtime. Denis' brother Dimitri Kazionov was scoreless in Kazan's 3-2 overtime win over Amur.
Submitted by pete on September 7, 2006 - 21:12
Just a friendly reminder, Friday marks the opening of the Traverse City prospect tournament. At 10:45 am tomorrow the team will hold a practice in anticipation of their 7:30 pm tilt with the New York Rangers' prospects. The Lightning's official roster for the tournament [url=http://www.tampabaylightning.com/files/traversecity.pdf]has been posted online[/url] and features highly touted Finnish goaltenders [url=karri-ramo]Karri Ramo[/url] and [url=riku-helenius]Riku Helenius[/url]. The tournament is the second step on what has become a two month long process to identify and place players in the Lightning prospect system. The tournament has added importance for tryout invitees like David Desharnais of Chicoutimi who are seeking professional contracts in the Lightning organization. Bolt Prospects will have full coverage of the tournament and reaction from the Lightning front office as it all unfolds.