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Juniors Game Night: 11-6-14

Ontario Hockey League

Owen Sound Attack 2 @ Windsor Spitfires 4

W Cristiano DiGiacinto, WSR: 1-0-1, +1, 0 PIM, *First Star*
Season totals: 10 GP, 5-2-7, -2, 19 PIM
2013-14 totals: 50 GP, 17-11-28, +8, 101 PIM

DiGiacinto was awarded first star for his effort on Thursday night, which included the eventual game-winning goal in a 4-2 win over Owen Sound. DiGiacinto has a goal in five of his 10 games this year.

North Bay Battalion 1 @ Peterborough Petes 2

D Dominik Masin, PBO: 0-0-0, +1, 0 PIM
Season totals: 14 GP, 3-5-8, -5, 31 PIM
2013-14 totals: 39 GP, 2-19-21, +6, 102 PIM

Stephen Nosad (undrafted) scored with six seconds left in regulation to lift the Petes to a 2-1 win over North Bay.

NHL Game Night: 11-6-14 Flames at Lightning

Dump Truck unstoppable versus the Flames.

CGY-2
TB-5

Ben Bishop allowed 2 goals on 31 shots for the victory. The Lightning were rather loose defensively in this game, so Bishop did some solid work.

First Period
9:55 TB Paquette (1), (Drouin)
15:22 CGY Hudler (4), (Brodie, Giordano)

Second Period
1:01 TB Paquette (2), (Namestnikov, Garrison)
4:02 TB Boyle (4), (unassisted)(SH)
4:22 CGY Monahan (5), (Gaudreau, Giordano)(PP)

Third Period
0:40 TB Johnson (2), (Kucherov, Palat)
17:50 TB Filppula (3), (unassisted)(EN)

Cedric Paquette (Dump Truck!), Brian Boyle, and Tyler Johnson were the game's three stars.

On this homestand, you started to get the distinct impression the Lightning have gotten to a point that, with their skill and depth, they can toy with lower tier opponents like Calgary. It looked that way tonight, especially after the Flames got lost in the jet fumes when Tampa Bay just decided to pull away for good in the Third Period. With that said, after they play Columbus on Saturday, they've got a string of games starting Sunday against Detroit where I don't think the kind of defensive effort they've been putting out lately is going to cut it. So, I suspect Jon Cooper is hoping they get this all out of their system now because big boy hockey is about to start: Detroit, Chicago, and San Jose. That's why tonight's win and a good effort in Columbus are particularly valuable. The Lightning have already collected half the points they need to stay on schedule in this 10-game segment of the season with 7 games left in it. Needing to collect just 6 points in the next 7 games is a good spot to be in, and if they can cut that to 4 in 6 they'll be in prime position to bank some more insurance points even as the schedule gets tougher.

Paquette had his first 2 NHL goals and was +2 with 4 shots, 1 hit, and 2 blocked shots in 11:47. He was also 57% on draws. Two very Paquette-like goals: the first taking a defender on his back and driving out to the front of the next and the second potting a rebound in the high rent district. To recount the reason why I nicknamed him Dump Truck: Dump trucks aren't pretty. Dump trucks aren't fast. Dump trucks are strong and dump trucks do hard work. That's what Cedric Paquette does. Hard work.

Jonathan Drouin had a helper and was +2 with 2 penalty minutes, 1 shot, and 1 hit in 10:58. The guy continues to collect the odd point and he's nowhere near as effective as he's going to be once he settles in.

Vladislav Namestnikov had 1 assist and was +3 with 2 shots and 1 blocked shot in 12:52. He was also 100% on 5 draws. He's really been the straw that stirs the drink on that line with Drouin and Paquette, and with his speed he's started to out-Stamkos Stamkos on that big sweepy wide rush around the net and out the other side while he works to setup his linemates. Honestly, I still believe the Filppula/Stamkos line needs to be disassembled sooner rather than later, and I'd really like to see what Namestnikov could do playing on a line with Stamkos.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

KHL Game Day: 11-6-14

Khanty-Mansiysk 3 vs. Novgorod 2 (OT)
Nikita Gusev, Khanty-Mansiysk, 1-0-1, +2, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season totals: 21 GP, 8-3-11, -2, 6 PIM

Nikita Gusev had his 8th goal of the season in 16:34 of ice time in Yugra's 3-2 OT victory over Novgorod. Ex-Sharks first rounder Lukas Kaspar had the other 2 Yugra goals.

St. Petersburg 1 vs. Magnitogorsk, 2
Vasily Koshechkin, Magnitogorsk, Win, 28/29, 1.00 GAA, .966 sv%
Season totals: 25 GP, 17-2-4, 3 SO, 1.49 GAA, .946 sv%

Rafael Batyrshin had 1 goal and 1 assist to lead Magnitka to a 2-1 win over SKA St. Petersburg. Vasily Koshechkin turned aside 28 for the win.

Vermin Looking Forward, Eyes NHL


By Jeremy Houghtaling

Joel Vermin has put last year behind him.

The Crunch forward, who finished with a disappointing 18 points in 49 games with Bern of the Swiss A-League, has found a role on one of Syracuse's top lines and registered six points in his first nine games this season.

"Last year was last year," Vermin said. "I don't really think about that too much. It was a learning process for me."

Juniors Game Night: 11-5-14

Western Hockey League

Calgary Hitmen 4 @ Prince Albert Raiders 2

D Ben Thomas, CAL: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season totals: 17 GP, 2-5-7, E, 10 PIM
2013-14 totals: 72 GP, 7-24-31, +11, 39 PIM

The Hitmen won their second game in as many nights, defeating the Raiders in Prince Albert, 4-2. Marcus Messier, cousin of NHL Hall of Famer Mark Messier, was scoreless for Prince Albert.

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