Tampa Bay Lightning

Content regarding the Tampa Bay Lightning organization.

How Does That Taste Hockey's Future/THN?

You know, I find it pretty funny "mainstream" media outlets like Hockey's Future and THN can find it fit to ridicule the Tampa Bay Lightning's prospect base, put us dead last in their organizational ranking and keep our players out of their top-50 prospects without even so much as an honorable mention and yet when the puck is dropped and the real games are played the Lightning have three of the better rookies in the league this season. TSN [url=http://tsn.ca/nhl/news_story/?ID=155720&hubname=nhl]released their top-40 rankings for rookie forwards today[/url] and Ryan Craig (#23) and Evgeny Artyukhin (#25) both made the grade. Here's a fun exercise: count the number of well hyped 1st round draft picks lunch pail 8th rounder Ryan Craig has outplayed so far this year. I count nine between the rest of the top-40 and the honorable mentions TSN lists, and I'm sure a certain very biased online editor at Hockey's Future must be thoroughly embarassed by the immortal Jim Slater being bested by [b]two[/b] prospects from the Lightning's allegedly bare cupboard. Earlier TSN [url=http://www.tsn.ca/fantasy_news/news_story/?ID=154226&hubname=fantasy_news]had released their list of the top-20 rookie defensemen prospects and 6th round pick Paul Ranger checked in at #15.[/url] What!? No Braydon Coburn!?!?! To the critics of this organization: [img]http://www.worldbook.com/features/birds/assets/crow.jpg[/img] Would you prefer yours grilled or baked?

Game Night 2/11: Lightning at Bruins

First one to six wins... TB-6 BOS-5 John Grahame stopped 21 out of 26 in his last start before joining Team USA at the Olympics. The Lightning have now cut Carolina's division lead to 12 points with the Hurricanes playing one more game tomorrow before the Olympic break. Vaclav Prospal had 2 goals including the game winner while Dimitry Afanasenkov had a flashback to his days in the QMJHL and had a pair of markers of his own. Among Lightning rookies, Ryan Craig had a goal and an assist while Paul Ranger chipped in a helper of his own. Craig played 19:47 and was +2 with 4 shots on goal. Paul Ranger was +3 in 13:35 with 1 shot on goal. Evgeny Artyukhin played 12:03 with 3 shots on goal. Game sheet from [url=http://www.nhl.com/scores/htmlreports/20052006/GS020852.HTM]NHL.com.[/url]

Game Night 2/9: Hurricanes at Lightning

Tonight, we're still the class of the Southeast Division. CAR-3 TB-5 John Grahame stopped 28 of 28 faced in relief for the win. Fredrik Modin led the Lightning attack with 2 goals. Rookie Evgeny Artyukhin opened the scoring for the Lightning on a long slapshot on the rush that found Martin Gerber's five hole. Paul Ranger had 2 assists. The Lightning pull to within 14 points of the Hurricanes in the division. Ryan Craig played 16:55 and was +1 with 1 shot and 2 hits. Ranger was +3 in 14:33 with no shots. Artyukhin was +1 in 13:09 with 2 shots on goal and 3 hits. Norm Milley forms the rear with 2 minutes even and no shots. Game sheet at [url=http://www.nhl.com/scores/htmlreports/20052006/GS020837.HTM]NHL.com.[/url]

Eklund Traded to Boston

According to a Springfield Falcons press release, the Tampa Bay Lightning, after deciding that both Jonathan Boutin and Gerald Coleman have passed Brian Eklund on the goaltender depth chart, have traded Eklund to the Boston Bruins in his home state of Massachusetts. In return, the Lightning pick up former Atlanta third-rounder, winger Zdenek Blatny. Blatny is in his fifth season of professional hockey and has spent time with both the Providence and Boston Bruins this season. In 35 games with Providence this season, the 6-foot-1, 195-pound native of Brno, Czech Republic, has recorded eight goals and 22 assists for 30 points. Blatny is currently ranked fifth on Providence in scoring this season and also ranked fifth on the team in plus/minus with a +6 rating.

Game Night 2/7: Lightning at Devils

Ambushed. TB-4 NJ-7 John Grahame stopped just 18 of 22 shots faced while Sean Burke stopped only 5 of 8 in relief. Evgeny Artyukhin was a lone bright spot for the Lightning scoring his 3rd goal of the season on the power play. Post mortem on [url=http://www.nhl.com/scores/htmlreports/20052006/GS020822.HTM]NHL.com.[/url]
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