TAMPA BAY, Fla. â€“ 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.
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).
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.
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.
The Belleville Bulls are reporting they have acquired Lightning 2009 second rounder Richard Panik in a seven player trade with Windsor.
Panik, Austen Brassard, defenseman Paul Bezzo, and goaltender Steve Gleeson were sent to Belleville with Owen Soundâ€™s third round pick in the 2010 OHL Priority Selection, Owen Soundâ€™s second round pick in the 2012 OHL Priority Selection and Windsorâ€™s seventh round pick in the 2012 OHL Priority Selection for goaltender Philipp Grubauer, defenseman Marc Cantin, and forward Stephen Johnston to Windsor.
(Regina Pats release) Regina Pats General Manager is proud to announce the acquisition of forwards Carter Ashton, Craig Orfino and a 3rd round pick in the 2010 WHL Bantam Draft from the Lethbridge Hurricanes. In exchange, the Pats send 17 year old forward Graham Hood, 15 year old prospect Taylor Balog, a 2nd round pick in the 2010 WHL Bantam Draft, as well as their 1st round pick in 2011.
Eighteen year old Carter Ashton is native of Saskatoon and was a 1st round pick of the Tampa Bay Lightning in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. This season he has 13 goals and 13 assists in 28 games with the Hurricanes.
The OHL's Ottawa 67â€™s announced Wednesday that winger and Lightning prospect Matias Sointu was traded to the Sudbury Wolves for goaltender Francis Dupuis.
According to the Orleans Star, the trade represents an opportunity to gain more playing time for Sointu.
â€œHere in Ottawa, we have a solid group of young forwards and with Corey Cowick coming back in the New Year it looked like Matias wasnâ€™t going to get the minutes he needs to continue his development,â€ 67's coach Chris Byrne told the Star. â€œIn Sudbury, I think heâ€™ll be a top-six forward and have the opportunity to develop at a faster pace. We thank him for his contribution to our team and wish him well with the Wolves.â€
The newspaper received confirmation of the expected transaction from Janus' agent, Craig Oster of Newport Sports Management Inc. in Mississauga, Ontario.
The report also states the Lightning are interested in signing Janus after this season.
Janus, a 2009 sixth round pick of the Lightning, began the season with Norfolk on a 25-game professional tryout contract. He has played in two of Norfolk's 10 games, accumulating a 0-2-0 record, a 1.52 goals-against average (GAA) and a .939 save percentage. Last year he posted a 25-20-4 record with Erie, along with a 3.24 GAA and a .908 save percentage. The Otters have struggled defensively this year so far, and Janus will be a welcomed re-addition.
This is the second time in two seasons DeCoste has been traded. Last year the center/winger split the season between Brampton and the Soo, scoring 15 times while contributing 13 assists and 76 penalty minutes.
He has recorded two goals and three points along with 20 penalty minutes in 13 games played so far with the Greyhounds in this, his fourth OHL season.
DeCoste, who has a goal and an assist in his last two games, was taken by the Lightning in the fifth round of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft.
The Tampa Bay Lightning have claimed prospect forward Radek Smolenak on waivers from the Chicago Blackhawks and have reassigned him to the Norfolk Admirals, it was announced today by Lightning Executive Vice President & General Manager Brian Lawton.
Smolenak, a 6-foot-3, 210-pound left wing from Prague, Czech Republic, skated in one regular season game with the Blackhawks and recorded five penalty minutes on Thursday in Detroit. Last season, Smolenak made his NHL debut by playing six games with the Lightning, recording an assist and 10 penalty minutes while averaging 8:20 in ice time. He made his NHL debut on December 2 at Philadelphia and recorded his first NHL point with an assist in that game.
Smolenak, 22, ranked third in goals, fifth in points and tied for fifth in assists with the Admirals last season. In 71 games with the Admirals he recorded 24 goals and 25 assists with 165 penalty minutes. In 147 career AHL games between the Admirals and Springfield Falcons, Smolenak has 39 goals and 37 assists with 281 penalty minutes. He also has appeared in 43 career ECHL games between Johnstown and Mississippi, scoring 15 goals and 20 assists with 35 penalty minutes.
Smolenak was originally drafted in the third round (73rd overall) by the Lightning in 2005. He appeared in 132 games with the Kingston Frontenacs of the Ontario Hockey League from 2004-06, scoring 74 goals and 70 assists with 167 penalty minutes.
The Admirals and Manchester Monarchs will square off again tonight at Scope.