N.A. Juniors Playoff Game Night: 3/24
Lightning prospects go 6-0 on the night - and all were on the road, including three Q teams on the verge of sweeps.
Great ending to a horrifically boring game.
Mike McKenna was very strong stopping 33 of 34 shots for the win.
04:21 CBJ Hejda (3), (Williams)
10:55 TB Malone (25), (Lashoff, Stamkos)(PP)
03:04 TB St. Louis (28), (Stamkos, Petiot)
These two teams should be banned from playing games against each other. Fortunately, they rarely hook up. However, rarely should be reduced to never, ever, because they historically produce some of the biggest snoozers.
Good to see Steven Stamkos with a pair of helpers to continue his robust late season charge. He's now over a point a game in his last 17 contests.
The Lightning are playing themselves out of the opportunity to draft John Tavares or Victor Hedman. It brings up some interesting philosophical debates if they pick third or fourth? Take big Jared Cowen, who is a man child but is rehabbing a knee? Take the speedy Matt Duchene or Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson? Or sacrifice some burst for grit and character with Evander Kane? This is where I'm glad I'm not a scout whose livelihood depends on making the right choice. One or two in this draft is easy. Three or four is several sleepless nights and several heartfelt conversations pleading with the deity of your choosing.
Noah Welch played 14:38 in the game. He didn't break anything.
Matt Smaby had 1 shot, 3 hits, and 1 blocked shot in 23:56. That's the line I'd like to see with Matt. He would've been +1 were it not for a bad bounce off of him and in for Columbus' lone goal. Team leading IT for big 32.
David Koci had 2 penalty minutes and 1 hit in 8:07, as a winger, where he needs to be.
Martins Karsums had 2 shots, 1 hit, and 1 blocked shot in 15:23. He's drawn a good card playing with Lecavalier and Prospal at even strength, but he's done squat with it so far.
Richard Petiot had 1 assist and was -1 with 2 penalty minutes, 3 shots, 1 hit, and 1 blocked shot in 21:06.
Matt Lashoff had yet another power play assist, 1 hit, and 1 blocked shot in 23:49. The Lashoff trade continues to pay off like the loosest slot machines on the Vegas Strip. The hand wringing about the Lightning having to turn the power play over from Murphy to Lashoff a week ago is a distant, somewhat laughable memory.
N.A. Juniors Playoff Game Night: 3/23
WHL Playoffs â€“ Round 1
Calgary Hitmen 4 @ Edmonton Oil Kings 1
Calgary leads Best of 7 series 3-0
G Torrie Jung, EDM: Loss, 41 saves on 45 shots, *Second Star*
Playoff totals: 3 GP, 0-2-1, 3.51 GAA, .920 sv%
Season totals: 48 GP, 20-20-3-5, 2.56 GAA, .912 sv%, 3 shutouts
The story of No.1 Calgary vs. No.8 Edmonton has become less about the Hitmenâ€™s dominance, and more about Torrie Jung. Jung stopped 41 shots Monday giving him 95 saves over the past two games, though as he would likely tell you, itâ€™s the 2 losses over that time that matter most. Getting more than two total goals of support in three games would help the cause, but Jung isnâ€™t one to complain. And letâ€™s be honest, no one expected Edmonton, who squeaked into the playoffs with a tiebreaker win over Prince Albert, to compete with the No.1 ranked team in all of Canadian Junior hockey â€“ a team that averaged a league-best 4.5 goals per game.
N.A. Juniors Playoffs Game Night: 3/22
WHL Playoffs â€“ Round 1
Edmonton Oil Kings 1 @ Calgary Hitmen 2 (OT)
Calgary leads Best of 7 series 2-0
G Torrie Jung, EDM: OT Loss, 54 saves on 56 shots, *First Star*
Playoff totals: 2 GP, 0-1-1, 3.00 GAA, .925 sv%
Season totals: 48 GP, 20-20-3-5, 2.58 GAA, .911 sv%, 3 shutouts
Close, but not quite a complete steal for Jung and 8th-seeded Edmonton. Jung stopped 54 shots in 3 Â½ periods for the Oil Kings, but couldnâ€™t get the offensive help he needed. Carson McMillian (Wild) scored for Calgary at 9:04 of overtime when he deflected a shot from the point to give the Hitmen the win (Edmonton Journal photo). Game 3 is Monday in Edmonton. Calgary outshot Edmonton 56-24 in the game, including 20-4 in the opening period and 20-1 in the third. Despite the disparity in shots, Edmonton held a 1-0 lead until 15:42 of the third period.
"What can I say? [Jung]'s unbelievable. He's been there all year," Edmonton coach Steve Pleau told the press.
"Were not even here if it weren't for Junger. Were at the point now where we expect it, and we build off of it. He gives us all our energy and all our belief in what we do."
More playoff results ... Cunti gets another point ... blowouts for Moncton and Vancouver ... Tokarski and Fadden lose close ones.