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Quick Strikes: Nikita Kucherov scores the OT winner as Tampa Bay beats Nashville 3-2

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Alex Killorn scores two, that Laine kid has some talent, and the Oleg Sosunov hype train.

NHL: Preseason-Tampa Bay Lightning at Nashville Predators
Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne (35) makes a save on a scoring attempt by Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Nikita Kucherov (86) during the second period at Bridgestone Arena.
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

The Bolts

Before we get to Nikita Kucherov’s heroics, Alex Killorn put home two powerplay goals to give the Tampa Bay Lightning a 1-0, and later, a 2-1 lead. Miikka Salomaki scored on a penalty shot he drew against Victor Hedman, and Colton Sissons buried one with a few minutes left in regulation, sending the game to OT. “In overtime, Kucherov quickly took over, forcing a turnover and redirecting Anton Stralman's feed into the back of the net 1:02 into the extra frame. Stralman picked up his first point of the preseason with the primary assist. Steven Stamkos also grabbed an assist for his second of the night.” [NHL dot com]

Bonus: this passing play by Hedman, Kuch, and Stamkos on the powerplay to open up a wide open shot for Killorn in the high slot for the games opening goal.

With the last preseason game in the books, the Tampa Bay Lightning turn their attention to the 2017-18 regular season. Before the games begin, now is a good time to reflect on what the preseason taught us. “Though the Lightning insisted spots were open, there likely won't be many surprises in the end. It is down to 25 players, with the final forward spot coming down to injured Michael Bournival, Cory Conacher, Gabriel Dumont and Yanni Gourde. Gourde appears to be a lock. Dumont's faceoff forte gives him an edge. Conacher is potentially the odd-man out.” [Tampa Bay Times]

I’m so excited I’m hugging myself.

The Prospects

Junior Update: Taylor Raddysh, Otto Somppi, and Christopher Paquette were out of the lineup due to injuries last night, Brett Howden and Oleg Sosunov are on a roll in the WHL, Libor Hajek had himself a multi-point night in a win against Calgary, while Alexey Lipanov had an all-around rough night in a shootout loss to Hamilton. [Bolts Prospects]

It’s time to jump on the hype train early!

The Syracuse Crunch began their preseason with a 3-2 win over the Utica Comets. “Mitchell Stephens earned two points on the night, assisting on both of Dennis Yan's tallies, while Daniel Walcott contributed the other Crunch goal. Connor Ingram stopped 27-of-29 shots on goal in his first appearance between the pipes for the Crunch. Thatcher Demko turned aside 33-of-36.” [Syracuse Crunch]

On day two of “Meet the Adirondack Thunder” we take a look at who the team had on defense. They have a Brodeur, Boyle, Johnson, and two Bergin’s (who are not related)! “Brodeur became a key member of the Syracuse defense corps last season after signing a PTO in December and simply never left the lineup. He appeared in 15 games with the Thunder to start the 2016-17 season before joining the Crunch, where he had 56 regular season and 22 postseason games.” [Raw Charge]

The Game

The Ottawa Senators flat-lined in a 9-2 trouncing at the hands of the offensive juggernaut Montreal Canadiens. “So here we are, 15 minutes into the second period and the Ottawa Senators haven’t even registered a shot attempt. Yes, you read that correctly.” [Habs Eyes on the Prize]

Dear Max McCormick, why?

Part of me doesn’t want Jaromir Jagr to get a job, only so we can get more tweets like this:

Hightlight of the Night: Patrik Laine’s going to be showing up here a lot this season. The Calgary Flames and Winnipeg Jets are playing some 4 on 4 hockey in the 2nd period and the Jets are gearing up for another offensive att-- oh wait Patrik Laine has already split the forwards with a juggling puck and gotten off a perfect shot from a very imperfect shooting stance. Lord, have mercy on the Central this season.

And from another angle: [Reddit]

FWIW, this play by Sam Bennett would’ve won if he was able to bury the shot. Jacob Trouba, I am so sorry. [Reddit]

Jake Virtanen seems have to figured out to play hockey again and has made a very strong case to earn an opening-night roster-spot on the Vancouver Canucks. “The 21-year-old Vancouver Canuck, trying to reset his National Hockey League career after a false start that sent him to the minors last season, scored his fourth goal in his sixth pre-season game during a 3-2 win against the Edmonton Oilers at Rogers Arena. Virtanen’s fourth-line ice time of 8:39 was lowest on the Canucks.” [Sportsnet]