Defenseman Keith Aulie is likely to remain in Tampa as part of the opening night roster. - Jean-Yves Ahern-US PRESSWIRE
With several players on wiavers today, it gives us a glimpse of what the likely opening night roster is for the Tampa Bay Lightning.
The storm of waiver moves around the NHL today doesn't just give a wide assortment of offerings for clubs who are looking to improve (waiver pickups can help, just ask the Tampa Bay Lightning how Tim Wallace performed last season, or how Nate Thompson performs for that matter) but also gives us a peak at what the opening night rosters will look like for clubs.
In this case, Tampa Bay has placed forwards Kyle Wilson, Mike Angelidis, J.T. Wyman and defenseman Matt Taormina on waivers and will likely assign them to Syracuse if they indeed pass by tomorrow at noon. That's half of the call-ups from Syracuse that were invited to camp. Of those original eight players, Pierre-Cedric Labrie and Keith Aulie would have had to pass through waivers to be returned to the Crunch. Unless a last-minute change is made, Labrie and Aulie make the club.
If Aulie and Labrie are in (and Kyle Wilson out), that leaves one more roster spot to be filled. As was stated this morning, it won't be Mark Barberio or Radko Gudas playing the role of a ninth defenseman. It'll likely be Cory Conacher, who has been consistently playing with Captain Vincent Lecavalier and wing Teddy Purcell. Tyler Johnson, Barberio and Gudas do not need to be waived to be demoted, neither does Conacher, but where Cory has been playing and with whom makes it appear he's locked in.
[Note by John Fontana, 01/17/13 1:21 PM EST ] Lindsay Kramer of the Syracuse Post Standard confirms with Crunch GM (and Lightning assistant GM Julian BriseBois, that Cory Conacher and Pierre-Cedric Labrie have made the final roster. Kramer also says that Tyler Johnson, Mark Barberio and Radko Gudas are being returned to Syracuse today.
If this is the case, the immediate forward lineup looks something like:
Ryan Malone - Steven Stamkos - Martin St. Louis
Cory Conacher - Vincent Lecavalier - Teddy Purcell
Benoit Pouliot - Tom Pyatt - B.J. Crombeen
Adam Hall - Nate Thompson - Dana Tyrell
Defense should be (without the appropriate pairings):
So what are your thoughts, Bolts fans? Are you content with the lineup (with a variation of starters and combos) in the season opener against the Wahington Capitals?