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via Photobucket. Not sure where this originated but I found it real interesting at the end: ...

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2009rankings

via Photobucket. Not sure where this originated but I found it real interesting at the end: Richard Panik was projected late 1st round, early second. He went late in the 2nd to the Bolts. Meanwhile Carter Ashton was not on this pre-draft averaged-out mockup.

Tampa Bay Lightning 2009 NHL Free Agency Primer

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The Tampa Bay Lightning prepare for the Unrestricted Free Agent Frenzy of 2009. Needs? Wants? It's all subjective and at the mercy of team budget.

Tampa Bay Lightning Restricted Free Agents tended Qualifying Offers

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The Tampa Bay Lightning's list of RFA's tendered qualifying offers is out.

Captain Vinny Lecavalier sticking with Tampa Bay Lightning, GM Brian Lawton says

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"Though Lecavalier's agent Kent Hughes said Saturday he had not spoken to Lawton, he welcomed the sentiment he has been trying to get out of Tampa Bay for a while." So my question is this: if Lawton truly has no intentions of trading Vinny, then why didn't he bother giving private assurances of that fact to Vinny and his agent when they asked for them? My guess - and it is only a guess - is that it's because Lawton is unable to find any takers for Lecavalier and his contract extension at this time, so he can say something like that and probably mean it. That doesn't mean that Vinny won't be traded if another team is interested after all, though.

Interview with Carter Ashton during the 2009 NHL Draft

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A draft-night Interview of Carter Ashton, 29th selection of the 1st round of the 2009 NHL Draft.

Kirill Gotovets is Tampa Bay's Seventh Round selection

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Only the 2nd D-man taken by the Lightning in this years draft, Gotovets has a commitment to Cornell, the Brandon Wheat Kings own his rights in the WHL and the Minsk Dynamo of the KHL own his rights... What to do, what to do...? Smallish puck moving defenseman with finesse...

Tampa Bay selects Erie goaltender Jaroslov Janus in sixth round, 162nd Overall

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Named best goaltender in the World Junior Championships this year, Janus was passed over last year in the draft.

Goaltender Michael Zandor drafted by Tampa Bay -- Fifth Round, 148th Overall

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Considered raw talent, Oshawa's netminder Zandor adds depth to the Lightning goalie chart, but will be watched and re-assessed at a later time.

Alex Hutchings selected 93rd Overall by Tampa Bay Lightning

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OK, I'm an ignorant American who does not get much exposure to Junior Hockey and even I know Hutchings by name. This is a shock. 14th most unrrated prospect int eh draft as ranked by Red Line Scouting, Hutchings is a Center/RW and played for Barrie (no relation... I think) of the Ontario Hockey League last season. Click the title to find out more about Hutchings.

Tampa Bay selects Richard Panik Second Round, 52nd Overall

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We'll be sending you to Bolt Prospects for a recap of all the Lightning picks from today. The #52 pick by the Bolts is Richard Panik, a forward (RW/C) from Slovakia by way of the Czech Republic.

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