Trade/Transfer

Event tag that describes a prospect being involved in a trade

Bolts Acquire Gagne from Philadelphia

The Tampa Bay Lightning have acquired winger Simon Gagne from the Philadelphia Flyers for defenseman Matt Walker and a 4th round draft pick. Gagne waived his No Trade Clause to join the Lightning from the cap-strapped Flyers.

“In adding Simon to the Lightning today, we acquire a very talented player that will play along side our top forwards,” said Lightning GM Steve Yzerman upon making the announcement. “With his combination of speed and skill we are excited to have him with us and grateful he was willing to waive his no movement clause. This trade not only makes us a better team in the short-term, it helps create long-term flexibility for us, which all along has been one of our top priorities.”

“I’m very excited right now,” Gagne said in a team release. “I’m looking at this opportunity as a new challenge and a new start. Tampa Bay was a team I was more than willing to waive my no move clause for. I really like the direction the team is headed in with a solid owner, Steve Yzerman as GM and Coach Boucher. I’m really looking forward to playing with guys like Lecavalier, Stamkos and St. Louis. I’m excited to be a member of the Lightning and I’m looking forward to starting next season in Tampa Bay.”

In the past two months, Yzerman has dumped a $5.7M cap hit over the next three years on Philadelphia, while adding a 2012 second rounder (for Meszaros) and a much-coveted top-6 forward.

If Gagne can stay healthy - a big if - the Lightning's top-6 forwards are as good or better than most teams' in the league. Yzerman will no doubt spend the remainder of the offseason plugging in affordable holes in the bottom-6 and at the back of the defense.

In terms of prospects, in the short term, this means one of Matt Lashoff, Vladimir Mihalik, and Matt Smaby - all waiver eligible - could slot in as the No.6.

Also, the chances of Brett Connolly or Carter Ashton being rushed and getting a top-6 job just went from mediocre to very low. Ashton has the ability to excel as a third line forward, but with Dana Tyrell and James Wright perfect for that role, along with Johan Harju, it hardly seems necessary. Teddy Purcell and recently signed Niklas Persson also are third line possibilities. Ashton can return to Regina if he fails to make the Lightning. He cannot play in the AHL.

Lightning Shore Up Net; Sign Dan Ellis for Two Years

TSN is reporting that Dan Ellis has signed a two-year contract with the Tampa Bay Lightning, just two days after being acquired by the Canadiens from Nashville, for a contract is worth $1.5 million per year.

The Habs acquired the 30-year-old Ellis on Tuesday (along with forward Dustin Boyd and future considerations), sending Sergei Kostitsyn and future considerations to the Nashville Predators.

Ellis had a .909 save percentage and 2.69 goals against average in 31 games last season with the Preds. For Ellis, he will reunite with former Iowa Stars teammate and friend Mike Smith as the apparent goaltending tandem for the Bolts next season.

Bolts Deal Andrej Meszaros

TSN is reporting that the Tampa Bay Lightning have traded defenceman Andrej Meszaros to the Philadelphia Flyers for a 2012 second round pick.

Meszaros, 24, had six goals and 11 assists in 81 games with the Lightning last season.

This trade just ahead of the today's opening of free agency clears a significant long-term contract off the books for new GM Steve Yzerman is his reshaping of the Lightning roster. More details to follow.

Confirmed: Simek Signs Tryout Deal With Dynamo Riga

The blog Latvian Hockey is confirming that forward Juraj Simek, who has played in the Lightning organization for the past two seasons with Norfolk, has signed a tryout deal with KHL club Dynamo Riga. Dynamo Riga was also the club last season for fellow Lightning prospect Martins Karsums.

Koshechkin to Mytischi?

Russian website championat.ru is reporting a rumor sourced to Sport-Express that goaltender Vasily Koshechkin may possibly play next season for KHL club Mytischi. Koshechkin split last season between Togliatti and Magnitogorsk of the KHL and was reportedly an option to be signed by the Lightning this summer if ex-GM Brian Lawton had remained in Tampa Bay. Mytischi added Lightning prospect Denis Kazionov to its roster earlier this offseason and recently re-signed former Lightning draft pick Alexei Glukhov.

Lightning Trade Halpern for Purcell, 3rd

The Lightning have traded veteran forward Jeff Halpern to the Los Angeles Kings for young winger Ted Purcell and Florida's third round pick.

An accomplished scorer in the minors, Purcell has been somewhat of an inconsistent prospect in the NHL thus far, with three goals and three assists in 41 games so far this year on a stacked Kings squad. He had 16 points (4 goals) in 40 games with the Kings a season ago.

Bolts Send Smolenak to Abbotsford

TAMPA BAY, Fla. – The Tampa Bay Lightning have reassigned forward Radek Smolenak to the Abbotsford Heat of the American Hockey League, it was announced today by Lightning Executive Vice President & General Manager Brian Lawton.

Smolenak, 23, a 6-foot-3, 210-pound left wing from Prague, Czech Republic, appeared in 39 games with the Admirals this season, scoring seven goals and 14 assists with 49 penalty minutes. After skating in one regular season game with the Chicago Blackhawks to start the season, he was re-claimed on waivers by the Tampa Bay Lightning on October 10 and was reassigned to Norfolk. He was signed by the Lightning to a one-year contract on September 12.

Breaking News: Helenius to continue career in Sweden

According to the Swedish sports news site Aftonbladet, as well as Ilta-Sanomat in Finland, former Lightning first round pick Riku Helenius will pack his bags for Sweden.

The towering goaltender was recently pushed to No.3 in AHL Norfolk when the Lightning signed Jaroslav Janus from Erie of the OHL. Dustin Tokarski is the No.1 in Norfolk, though he's currently filling in for an injured Mike Smith in Tampa.

Helenius will join Sodertalje SK of the Swedish Elitserien League, and according to his agent, Jay Grossman (via Aftonbladet), this will give the young netminder more playing time.

Helenius was drafted in the first round (15th overall) at the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. He appeared in 12 games for Norfolk this year, posting a 5-7 record with a 2.75 GAA and .896 save percentage. He appeared in one game for the Lightning last season, stopping both shots he faced in mop-up duty. He previously played for Seattle of the WHL.

Update: The Lightning have confirmed the transaction, along with Tokarski being reassigned to Norfolk (1/24).

Lightning Return James Wright to WHL; Claim Nate Thompson Off Waivers

Steve Ewen of the Dub Hub is reporting that forward James Wright has been reassigned to his junior team, the Vancouver Giants of the WHL. From the Dub Hub phone interview with Wright, "I'm disappointed to be sent home. Any hockey player is disappointed when he doesn't make the team. But I'm going to try to keep a good head on my shoulders and play hard. They [Lightning] need to make the playoffs and this it the route they're going and it's hard for me but I do understand." Wright doesn't turn 20 until March 24th, so he is currently ineligible to be assigned to the Norfolk Admirals.

Earlier today, the Bolts claimed LW/C Nate Thompson off of waivers from the New York Islanders. Thompson, a 2003 6th round pick of the Boston Bruins signed a three-year entry level contract with the Bruins in 2005, but was claimed off waivers by the Islanders in October 2008. This past summer the Islanders resigned Thompson to a one-year contract.

Lightning Reassign Karsums to KHL

Tampa Bay - The Tampa Bay Lightning have assigned prospect right wing Martins Karsums to HC MVD Balashikha of the Kontinental Hockey League today, Executive Vice President and General Manager Brian Lawton announced. Karsums has played 36 games for the Norfolk Admirals this season, scoring 4 goals and adding 12 assists.

Despite speculation that prospect goaltender Dustin Tokarski will be recalled to Tampa today to back up Antero Niittymaki in tonight's match against the Florida Panthers, no official word of the recall has yet to be announced.

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