(Week ending September 25)
This season Bolt Prospects will be introducing our Prospect of the Week award. The award is (virtually) given to one Tampa Bay Lightning prospect for their on-ice contributions. There are no trophies or plaques or women jumping out of a cake involved (unfortunately), but weâ€™re fairly certain this will carry heavy weight among players in the global hockey community and with agents negotiating contracts (were this Twitter, weâ€™d use #sarcasm here).
Quite simply, we wanted to highlight prospects throughout the year to help fans get better acquainted with the next round of Lightning stars while recognizing the prospectâ€™s achievement on the ice.
The Canadian Hockey League today announced that Owen Sound Attack netminder Michael Zador is the Vaughn CHL Goaltender of the Week for the week ending April 3.
Zador was perfect between the pipes stopping all 48 shots he faced in 123 minutes of action producing a 2-0 record with a goals-against-average of 0.00 and save percentage of 1.000. He earned one individual shutout and split time with Scott Stajcer combining for a second team shutout victory.
Zador helped the Attack earn a first round playoff series win over the London Knights highlighted by a 23-save performance to backstop the club to a 1-0 shutout win in the Game six finale on Sunday where he earned second star honours. Zador made his first start of the series in Game five on Saturday and stopped all 13 shots he faced in the first 51 minutes of action before teammate Scott Stajcer finished the game with the two goalies combining for a 6-0 shutout win. Zador also made 12 saves in the final 12 minutes of a Game four loss 5-2 to the Knights on Thursday.
Zador, a 19-year-old from Toronto, ON, is playing in his third full OHL season and was selected in the fifth round of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft by the Tampa Bay Lightning.
--Canadian Hockey League (OHL photo)
Norfolk Admirals forward and Lightning prospect Johan Harju has been named to the AHL Eastern Conference All-Star Star Team for the 2011 AHL All-Star Classic Presented by Capital BlueCross.
Harju, 6-foot-3, 210 pounds, has appeared in 26 games with the Admirals this season in his North American debut, recording 15 goals and 26 points with a plus-8 rating. He leads Norfolk in goals and is fifth in points.
A native of Overtornea, Sweden, Harju made his NHL debut with the Tampa Bay Lightning on November 12 at Pittsburgh. He has played in seven NHL games with the Lightning this season, recording a goal and two points. He notched his first NHL point on December 4 against Colorado with an assist and followed that up with his first goal December 7 at Calgary. Harju was selected by the Lightning in the sixth round, 167th overall, of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft.
TSN reports the final cuts for Team Canada at the upcoming 2011 World Junior Championship have been made and both Lightning first rounders Brett Connolly and Carter Ashton made the team. This is the first time two Lightning prospects have made Canada's squad. The last representative for the Lightning on Team Canada was goaltender Dustin Tokarski in 2008-2009. Tokarski was player of the game for Canada in the gold medal match against Victor Hedman and Sweden.
Ashton, taken 29th overall in 2009, currently plays for the Tri-City Americans of the WHL, though he hasn't suited up for the team yet. He was traded from Regina last week. Connolly, taken sixth overall in 2010, is captain of the Prince George Cougars.
Canada will play three exhibition games beginning Monday against Switzerland, with the 2011 World Junior Hockey Championship beginning December 26 in Buffalo, New York, USA.
Connolly and his morning hair appeared on TSN's video segment this morning. Watch here: http://watch.tsn.ca/international-hockey/clip389669#clip389669
The American Hockey League announced today that Norfolk Admirals forward Johan Harju has been named Reebok/AHL Player of the Week for the period ending November 28, 2010. Harju scored six goals and notched one assist for seven points while posting a plus-5 rating in five games for the Admirals.
Norfolkâ€™s week began in Charlotte last Monday, and Harju scored twice as the Admirals rallied from two goals down to earn a 7-3 victory. Harju netted four points, including a hat trick, to help Norfolk to another come-from-behind win on Friday night, a 6-3 decision at Adirondack, and scored the game-winning goal in the Admiralsâ€™ 5-2 victory in Springfield on Saturday.
In recognition of his achievement, Harju will be presented with an etched crystal award prior to an upcoming Admirals home game.
Harju, 24, is in his first season of North American hockey after being drafted by the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2007. He leads Norfolk and ranks third in the AHL with 13 goals this season and has a team-high 23 points in 17 games with the Admirals. The native of Overtornea, Sweden, has also appeared in four NHL games with the Lightning, making his NHL debut on Nov. 12 at Pittsburgh.
Harju becomes the first AHL Player of the Week from Norfolk since Mathieu Darche won the award on November 18, 2007.
--Norfolk Admirals press release