Tokarski, Dustin

AHL Game Night: 10-21-11 Senators at Admirals

Beat. Down.


Dustin Tokarski went a little way toward cleaning up his early season statistics in light work with a 14 save shutout.

First Period
NOR Smith, (1) (Fornataro, Labrie), 4:48

Second Period
NOR Wyman, (2) (Tyrell, Fornataro), 4:06 (PP)
NOR Ashton, (5) (Conacher, Dimmen), 15:26 (PP)

Third Period
NOR Smith, (2) (Picard, Quick), 4:27 (PP)
NOR Smith, (3) (Fornataro), 10:30
NOR Conacher, (4) (Ashton), 14:55
NOR Tyrell, (1) (Angelidis), 15:06

Trevor Smith (pictured), Matt Fornataro, and Tic were the game's three stars. Smith with the hat trick. Carter Ashton, Cory Conacher, and Dana Tyrell chased that with 1 goal and 1 assist a piece. Methinks the mythical Bolt Prospects Player of the Week Trophy (Tentatively known as the Alex Kharitonov Cup, because "It's big as a house!") is maintaining its temporary residency in Norfolk for one more week.

In case you're wondering, Ashton is tied for second in the AHL in scoring right now, 1 point back of Manchester's Andrei Loktionov. He's also tied for third in goals and first in power play goals. Not a bad rookie debut. He's a large part of why the Admirals are currently tops in the league in goals scored.

The marketing slogan for the team this year is "Armed and Ready." They weren't kidding. Shots were 53-14 in favor of the Admirals, which explains how you get to 7-0 on the scoreboard. Tonight's game wasn't a contest, it was a mass execution. And, these two teams will do it all over again tomorrow. Have mercy on Bingo's players' souls.

Box score from

AHL Game Night: 10-14-11 Bears at Admirals

Does this open the door for Janus to take the starting job?


Dustin Tokarski allowed 6 goals on 22 shots for the loss before being lifted for Jaroslav Janus, who allowed 1 goal on 11 shots the rest of the way. The numbers are ugly. Tokarski has a 6.35 GAA and .788 sv% in his first two starts, after being injured for much of training camp. My guess is that if Janus' next start is successful, he may be the #1 for a little while.

First Period
HER Bourque, (2) (Micflikier, McNeill), 4:47 (PP)
HER Flemming, (1) (Bourque, Wellar), 10:11
NOR Wyman, (1) (Smith, Tyrell), 15:32
NOR Johnson, (3) (Ashton, Barberio), 17:02 (PP)

Second Period
HER Eakin, (1) (Flemming, Richmond), 2:02
HER Bourque, (3) (Aucoin, Micflikier), 8:07 (PP)
NOR Barberio, (1) (Ashton, Johnson), 9:32
HER Micflikier, (1) (Mink, McNeill), 12:05 (PP)

Third Period
HER Eakin, (2) (Bourque, McNeill), 2:07
NOR Ouellet, (1) (Gudas, Wright), 2:25
HER Aucoin, (2) (Mink, Bourque), 6:06
NOR Panik, (1) (Picard), 16:26

On the bright side, Mark Barberio (3 GP, 1-5-6), Tyler Johnson (3 GP, 3-2-5), and Carter Ashton (3 GP, 3-3-6) continue to rack up points at an obscene clip. 2 points a game for any player is ridiculous. 2 points a game for a d-man like Barberio (pictured) is fantastic.

Norfolk hits the road for a rematch with Hershey tomorrow night. Again, the big intrigue will be between the pipes, where Jaroslav Janus will likely play, and if he does well, there may be a change in the depth chart for a while in net.

Box score from

AHL Game Night: 10-8-11 Checkers at Admirals

The kids are still alright...


Jaroslav Janus allowed 3 goals on 29 shots for the win. With Dustin Tokarski being hurt in camp and after giving up 5 goals on opening night, there's a bit of an opening for Janus to win a few more starts. He helped his stock tonight with a perfect 13/13 in the final frame to slam the door shut and secure the win.

First Period
NOR Ashton, (3) (Barberio, Conacher), 12:58 (PP)
CHA Bowman, (1) (Sanguinetti, Matsumoto), 16:12 (PP)

Second Period
CHA Roy, (1) (Matsumoto, McNicoll), 9:40 (PP)
NOR Picard, (2) (Wright, Fornataro), 10:38
NOR Johnson, (2) (Vernace, Conacher), 15:44
CHA Bowman, (2) (Matsumoto, Bellemore), 19:50

Third Period
NOR Conacher, (1) (Ashton, Johnson), 5:50

Cory Conacher (pictured) and Tyler Johnson were the game's first and second stars. Their linemate, Carter Ashton, also chipped in his 3rd goal of the season, and as a group they accounted for 3 of Norfolk's 4 goals.

Norfolk outshot Charlotte 44-29 in the match.

Box score from

AHL Game Night: 10-7-11 Checkers at Admirals

Comeback kids bury the Checkers.

NOR-6 (OT)

Dustin Tokarski allowed 5 goals on 29 shots for the win. He should be thankful his guys picked him up tonight.

First Period
NOR Ashton, (1) (Conacher, Barberio), 6:37 (PP)

Second Period
CHA Matsumoto, (1) (Sanguinetti, Boychuk), 4:26 (PP)
CHA Samson, (1) (Peters), 8:20
NOR Johnson, (1) (Barberio, Tyrell), 10:00 (SH)
CHA Samson, (2) (Sanguinetti, Matsumoto), 14:48

Third Period
CHA Boychuk, (1) (Krueger, Terry), 6:08
NOR Angelidis, (1) (Smith, Picard), 8:01 (PP)
CHA Matsumoto, (2) (Bowman), 12:44
NOR Labrie, (1) (Quick, Fornataro), 13:19
NOR Picard, (1) (Ouellet, Smith), 16:38 (PP)

NOR Ashton, (2) (Petiot, Wright), 1:55

Carter Ashton (pictured) and Tyler Johnson were the game's first and second stars. The kids are alright.

Mark Barberio starts his season with assists in triplicate.

Alexandre Picard had the biggest goal of the game on the power play to cap a 2 goal third period comeback and send the game to overtime. Who started the comeback? Pierre-Cedric Labrie with a nifty move to cut past the defense and cut the deficit in half. Somewhere Bolt Prospects writer and secret P-C Labrie fan Chad Schnarr is cringing and chuckling.

Norfolk outshot Charlotte 45-29 in the victory.

Box score from

AHL Preseason Game Day: 10-2-11 Admirals at IceCaps

The Admirals win the trilogy of preseason contests.


Dustin Tokarski stopped 30 of 32 in his final tune-up before the regular season.

First Period
NOR 1:08 Ouellet
STJ 4:48 Armstrong

Second Period
STJ 14:49 Jaffray, (Rossa)
NOR 18:39 Dimmen (PP)

Third Period
NOR 7:30 Picard, (Smith)
NOR 16:10 Ashton, (Conacher, Barberio)(PP)
NOR 19:39 Johnson (EN)

Tyler Johnson ends up the only Admiral with points in all three preseason games.

Game story from

AHL Preseason Game Night: 9-29-11 Admirals at IceCaps

Strong start.


Dustin Tokarski stopped all 6 shots he faced for the win before giving way to Pat Nagle, who allowed 2 goals on 13 shots the rest of the way.

First Period
NOR 2:33 Labrie, (Smith)
NOR 11:57 DeVos, (Palat)
NOR 14:08 Vernace, (Johnson, Wright)

Second Period
NOR 9:02 Dimmen, (Johnson, Wright)

Third Period
STJ 1:15 Cameron
STJ 5:41 King
NOR 13:34 Fornataro, (Picard)(PP)

Game recap from

Tokarski's Return, Janus' Rise Creates Competition in Norfolk

He's back.

Dustin Tokarski spent the first weekend of the Tampa Bay Lightning's 2011 training camp in a nice new Lightning cap and standard-issue Lightning shorts and t-shirt, standing at the glass watching his teammates make their impressions on Lightning management. An abdominal injury kept Tokarski out of the Coral Springs rookie tournament, and now the highly competitive start of training camp.

Things started looking up for the former Memorial Cup MVP Wednesday as the Tampa Tribune reported the two MRIs done on Tokarski revealed no damage. He was back on the ice Wednesday morning.

And just in time.

Ritola, Jones, and Tokarski Join Lightning Practices

Yesterday the Tampa Bay Lightning recalled forwards Mattias Ritola and Blair Jones, as well as goaltender Dustin Tokarski, from the Norfolk Admirals of the American Hockey League, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced. Norfolk was recently eliminated from the AHL’s Calder Cup Playoffs.

BP Note: The prospects will form what is known as the "Black Aces," a practice squad of sorts for the playoffs.

AHL Playoff Game Night: 4/23/11 Admirals at Penguins

A brave Norfolk Admirals team has nothing to be ashamed about effort-wise in this playoffs.


Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Wins the Series 4-2

Dustin Tokarski allowed 4 goals on 27 shots, including an unsuccessful third period penalty shot by Joe Vitale in the third period. Considering the winning goal was essentially a 3-on-1, there's not much more Tic could've done tonight. He finishes the playoffs with 1 shutout, a 2.20 GAA, and a .924 save percentage, and he looks like a lock to be Norfolk's starter next season. In all likelihood, Cedrick Desjardins will be the backup in Tampa Bay next season, and Tokarski's play down the stretch seems to indicate he's the type of netminder who wants and needs to be the clear cut #1 in order to be at his best after struggling a bit as a tandem starter with Desjardins. He's regained the title of the Lightning's "Goaltender of the Future" and the priority for next season, his third pro season, will be for Tokarski to prove he can be that consistent #1 goalie before potentially moving up to the NHL in the 4th season of his pro career. At least, that seems to be what the plan is for Tic.

First Period
WBS Wagner, (1) (Walker, Craig), 2:13 (PP)
WBS Wagner, (2) (Potter, Walker), 3:58 (PP)
WBS Wagner, (3) (Wallace, Potter), 18:36

Second Period
NOR Pouliot, (4) (Ritola, Vernace), 14:18
NOR Jones, (1) (Ritola, Milam), 16:03 (PP)

Third Period
WBS Vitale, (2) (Wallace, Collins), 7:23
NOR Wright, (1) (Fornataro, Pouliot), 10:35 (PP)
WBS Wallace, (1) (Vitale, Potter), 18:57 (EN)
WBS Sill, (1) (Strait, Thiessen), 19:21 (EN)

Marc-Antoine Pouliot was the game's third star.

When you consider the Penguins came into this series the best team in the Eastern Conference, and the Admirals had to win their last game just to avoid having to cross over into the Atlantic Division, the Admirals have nothing to feel ashamed of in playing this series so tightly. The hard work and character of this Admirals team is worthy of mention, and the team and organization have come such a long way in 4 seasons since the Lightning started their affiliation with Norfolk.

Coincidentally, the East's crossover team, Binghamton, just knocked off Manchester in Game 7 to advance to the Atlantic Division final against Portland. One wonders what shape a Norfolk/Manchester series might have taken if Norfolk hadn't beaten Connecticut to close the regular season.

The big question now is what this Norfolk Admirals team will look like next season, with several of their older players facing contract decisions and several of the Lightning's best young prospects ticketed for Virginia next season.

Will veterans like Marc-Antoine Pouliot, Chris Durno, Mike Vernace, Mathieu Roy, and Troy Milam be back with the team next year? What about long-time pros like Blair Jones, Mike Angelidis, Mattias Ritola, and Vladimir Mihalik? Mihalik and Ritola just finished their 4th years of pro hockey and Jones and Angelidis finished their 5th. Many of these players will surely have opportunities to play in European leagues next season. We know Johan Harju will, for instance, and the question is whether Johan will stay in North America after a disappointing second half. And will Kevin Quick's time in the Lightning organization be over as well?

Conversely, the Admirals will need to free up spots for several of the Lightning's top prospects. Carter Ashton and Charles Landry have already made appearances for the club this season in the playoffs. Richard Panik and Tyler Johnson seem like locks to be in Norfolk next season, too.

Next season could be a big change for the Admirals organization, as the last vestiges of previous regimes pass on. Change is inevitable for a minor league club, but the Admirals seem destined for even more change than is the norm. The good news is that they seem to have good goaltending locked down and even better coaching after a successful inaugural campaign by Head Coach Jon Cooper and assistant Mike Flanagan along with player development consultant Steve Thomas. This group seems to have taken a decent foundation laid by earlier teams and made it even stronger this year, and that foundation can help the new Admirals grow to be even more successful than this year's edition, in time. Look at how well guys like Mark Barberio and Radko Gudas took to the league this season. It portends good things.

Box score from

AHL Playoff Game Night: 4/22/11 Penguins at Admirals

What an awful week for the Lightning organization.


Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Leads the Series 3-2

Dustin Tokarski allowed 2 goals on 25 shots in the loss. He's dropped to 2-3 in these playoffs, but he's got a very respectable 1.82 GAA and .937 save percentage thus far.

First Period
WBS Petersen, (1) (Sterling, Hutchinson), 8:06 (PP)
WBS Petersen, (2) (Sterling, Hutchinson), 19:13 (PP)

Second Period

Third Period
NOR Barberio, (1) (Ritola, Milam), 9:45 (PP)

Mark Barberio was the game's second star. Congratulations to him on his first professional playoff goal. It was a big one, as it got the Admirals back in the game and Norfolk nearly cracked Brad Thiesen a couple of time to knot up the score afterward. But, in the end, it was not meant to be.

For the Lightning and Admirals to get swept in 5 home playoff games this week is just rough to take. Rough. To. Take. It hurts. Things looked so promising after the weekend when the teams took all 3 games they played. I certainly didn't expect a week of futility like this. Painful.

Box score from

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