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Written by Dani Toth | 29 January 2010

ohlund_mattias

The fourth and last Lightning player, Mattias Ohlund's Olympic player profile is now up on the Olympic Hockey Blog.

As Team Sweden tries to defend their gold medal, Ohlund will don the Tre Kronor for his fourth Olympics.

Previous Olympic Lightning posts:

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Written by Dani Toth | 27 January 2010

Bienvenue! Ce soir, le Canadiens de Montréal sont à Tampa dans le deuxième match de deux en 24 heures face aux équipes de la Floride. Ce sera le troisième affrontement de la saison entre les deux équipes...

Enemy Blog: Check out the Four Habs Fans for your Habs centric perspective

Oh, is French not your thing? Well I shall continue the rest in English for all you Tampa fans.

The Lightning are still searching for their first three game win streak of the season. No really, I'm serious. The Canadiens (25-24-5) are currently sitting in 9th spot in the East at 55 points in a 4 way tie. The Lightning (21-20-10) sit back 3 points back with 52 points, so every point right now is huge. This is the second of Montreal's back to back games having lost to the Panthers last night.

It's an early game start at 7pm as this game is aired on both TSN and RDS, in addition to the local SUN. The first 5000 fans will also get a free Ryan Malone hat tonight

Line-up Notes:

  • Niittymaki to start and Smith to back up
  • David Hale has been sent to Norfolk for conditioning assignment
Game time: 7:00pm ET on RDS (HD), TSN (HD) and SUN (HD)
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Written by Dani Toth | 25 January 2010

malone_teamusa

The third Lightning player, Ryan Malone's Olympic player profile is now up on the Olympic Hockey Blog.

Bugsy brings skill, size and leadership to Team USA. And his tattoos.

Previous Olympic Lightning posts:

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Written by Dani Toth | 24 January 2010

Just two quick goalie things:

The Tampa Bay Lightning has re-assigned Dustin Tokarski back down to Norfolk, which means that Mike Smith will be back ready to play for Wednesday's game.

Riku Helenius has been assigned to Sodertalje of the Swedish Elite League. After this season, Helenius will have one more year left on his contract.

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Written by Dani Toth | 23 January 2010

wright_james

After playing 48 regular season games with the Lightning, James Wright has been sent back down to the Vancouver Giants. In the 48 games he played, this 19 year old center recorded 2 goals and 5 points. He was fifth among the Lightning in hits with 51. He was drafted 117th overall, in the fourth round of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft. He surprised everyone this year when he made the team and got promoted to the top line with Vinny Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis. Wright had a good camp and due to fantastic two way play he was promoted up to the top line, but eventually he caught in the line juggling of head coach Tocchet and never found the solid chemistry with a line. His movement in the lines were due to a lack of production of the Lightning star players, that caused Tocchet to keep mixing up the rest of his roster.

This is the statement released from the Lightning regarding his demotion:

“We are excited for James to get back to junior to continue his development. We feel the 20-plus minutes a night he receives there will be the best for his long-term growth,” Lawton said. “He has made strides far greater than we projected this soon in his career and we look forward to seeing him continue that growth.”

When the Lightning first decided to keep Wrighter with the team instead of sending him back to the WHL to play another year with the Vancouver Giants, I was a little bit surprised. My thoughts on the reason why you would keep a player that is still eligible to play another year in junior is because the player has nothing left to learn in the juniors. This may or may not have been the case with Wright, but I think the proper thought process in the decision about Wright had not been followed with the Lightning management. Anyone who reads my blog is well aware of what I think about the Lightning infrastructure and their tendency to make rash decisions, I believe the decision to keep Wrighter playing up in the NHL was made too quickly.

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Written by Dani Toth | 23 January 2010

lightning_jan_23_10_thrashers

Did we win in a shootout? GTFO!

Seriously? The Lightning won in a shootout?

  • After being scratched, defenceman Victor Hedman returned to the Lightning lineup tonight
  • Niittymaki made 37 saves tonight which makes his record against the Thrashers 15-0
  • Stamkos got the only goal in regulation
lightning_jan_23_10_thrashers2
  • Martin St. Louis went down after being knocked down by Pavel Kubina, the photo that emerged did not show St. Louis in the most attractive facial expression. Kinda leech-like or something going on there
  • Fedoruk got kicked in the junk
  • The Thrashers have lost the last 13 of 15 on the road. That reminds me of the Lightning...
  • The Green Men were in attendance of this game
  • Foster has a disallowed shootout goal as it went off of his leg on the rebound from Hedberg's initial stop
  • Everyone's favorite ref, Stephane Auger is reffing this game
  • Halpern scored in the 5th round of the shootout
  • Attendance is reported as 16212. The Nashville @ Colorado game tonight had an attendance of 12452, then again, upper bowl seats were like $10 non?
Next game is on Wednesday against the Habs no comments

Written by Dani Toth | 21 January 2010

Donate to Haiti! See a hockey game! For only 10 bucks....what? So the Lightning will be the real leaders in the donations race in the NHL right? The management can barely afford their own team, oh wait they can't?

Enemy blog: There really are so many. Check out my favorites:

With all the changes in the Lightning these days, it seems like the circus is back to town. The Lightning just picked up center Nate Thompson off of waivers from the NY Islanders. Cristodero says there is a corresponding move coming, so does that mean Wright is going down?

Hedman will be benched tonight because of his poor play, with Hale and Walker drawing in to the lineup. Then you ask yourself, what the hell? 1 guy scratched, 2 D in, math just doesn't add up. That's because Foster will be playing as a forward. Like I said, it seems like the circus is back to town. Oh and that Paul Ranger coming back soon thing, seems like a myth.

The Lightning have split the last two meeting with the Leafs, the next time we play them will be on March 11th. After embarrassing massacres, the Lightning really need to win a game.

I'm having a hockey high today, two games on deck (Lightning/Leafs, Canucks/Stars) that I can actually see on my TV in my living room....last year it seemed the Lightning were always invading TSN...now it's been a rare occurrence. As always, I'm excited for the quiz and James Duthie.

Line-up Notes:

  • Hedman is benched
  • Brandon Bochenski is benched
  • Niitymaki to start in net, Mike Smith still out
  • Kurtis Foster will play as a forward
  • David Hale and Matt Walker will be on D
Game time: 7:00 PM on TSN (HD), SUN (HD)
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