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Quick Strikes for Wednesday, February 18

The 2015 NHL trade deadline scuttlebutt gets richer, the 2015 Stadium Series game in Santa Clara is this weekend, and the Wichita Thunder are not-ready-for-prime-time-players. It's your latest edition of morning reads from around hockey.

Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports
  • Defensemen Nikita Nesterov and Luke Witkowski have both served well in their roles since being recalled due to injuries in the Lightning lineup. [Tampa Bay Times]
  • Another Russian prospect whose rights are controlled by the Tampa Bay Lightning is Nikita Gusev, who is having a solid season in the KHL. Don't expect him to make his North American and the NHL debut any time soon though. [The Hockey Writers]
  • The Lightning organization has a problem on the power play. No, really, the whole thing... Tampacuse laments its impotence with a man-advantage:

  • Some would say that defenseman Dan Milan (who is currently with the Wichita Thunder of the ECHL) is a not-ready-for-prime-time player. He hasn't ascended in the Tampa Bay Lightning organization. Now, you can confirm as much with video. Milan and his Wichita teammates pay homage to Saturday Night Live 40th anniversary through parody skits. []
  • Forward production for every single NHL team, charted through pie graphs to boot. For the curious Lightning fan, Pensburgh describes the Bolts as "remarkable". [Pensburgh]
  • The world's longest hockey game has recently concluded... 250 hours of puck-play and more than $1 million raised for charity. [Puck Daddy]
  • Islander fans are waxing nostalgic during the clubs success during what happens to also be the last season of play at Nassau County Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Such fond memories and some of them are just a bit too much information to share with strangers. [Deadspin]
  • It feels like we committed a crime by not knowing and not informing you that NHL Center Ice is currently in Free Preview mode through February 20th. You can access all games being broadcast and carried on the service at no charge. []
  • From last week but Bob McKenzie spoke a bit about the Maple Leafs unloading Cody Franson last week as well as Toronto speculation about moving Phil Kessel and Dion Phaneuf. [Maple Leafs Hotstove]
  • Outdoor games are a bit of a novelty, except on Saturday in Santa Clara, California. This season's sole Stadium Series game between the San Jose Sharks and LA Kings is a fight for playoff lives. No surprise that the contest at Levi's Stadium is a sellout. [Mercury News]
  • Then again, an Jose may be wavign the white flag? Goalie Antii Neimi is rumored to be available for acquisition as the 2015 NHL trade deadline approaches. [Fear the Fin]
  • John Buccigross speaks about the uncertainty of the moment - who is staying, who is moving on? [ESPN]
  • Former Red Wings forward Cory Emmerton had an altercation in the KHL. When the idea of criminal charges are being thrown around in incidents like this, you know it was bad. Video of the incident is included. [Faceoff Circle]