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Quick Strikes: Alex Barre-Boulet wants to prove he belongs in the Tampa Bay Lightning organization

As a famous man once said, “Draft the little effer who scores!”

Halifax Mooseheads v Blainville-Boisbriand Armada
Jan Hladonik #41 of the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada celebrates a second period goal with teammates Joel Teasdale #24 and Alex Barre-Boulet #19 against the Halifax Mooseheads during the QMJHL game at Centre d’Excellence Sports Rousseau on October 20, 2017 in Boisbriand, Quebec, Canada.
Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images

The Bolts

HockeyDB has a list of who is the best player of all-time at each draft position. It’s a very interesting tool that you can have a lot of fun with while finding some old diamonds in the rough. Geo sorted through the list and found the best Tampa Bay Lightning players of all-time who are on the list. [Raw Charge]

Raise your hand if you remember Tyler Moss being selected in the 2nd round of the 1993 NHL Entry Draft by the Lightning? Anyone? Just Matt Sammon? Ok. Well, he’s tops with an .891 SV% and 3.25 GAA. Pretty impressive! Hannu Toivonen in that spot has him in games played and win percentage. Oh, Moss had a .283 win%.

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Derek Lalonde is the newest member of the Lightning’s coaching staff. Check out this brief history of his time coaching in North America. [North Country Now]

Lalonde spent the previous two seasons as head coach of the Iowa Wild of the American Hockey League, top affiliate of the NHL’s Minnesota Wild. During his tenure in Des Moines, he posted a 69-58-17-8 record, becoming the first coach in Iowa Wild history to record a winning season with 36-31-7-2 during his first campaign in 2016-17.

The Prospects

Carter Verhaeghe ghosted us for a year. Don’t worry, he wasn injured, not salty about a break-up. Now, he’s looking to reclaim his spot on the Lightning’s depth chart with a healthy and consistent second season with the Syracuse Crunch. [Raw Charge]

His 48 points numbers in Syracuse put him second in team scoring, and if he had played all 75 games he was projected to top out at 62 points. When he was drafted by the Maple Leafs in 2013 there was concern about his size and scoring - most of his points came on the power play that season - but he’s filled out his body.

Staying in one spot for an entire season helped him build on his existing skills, and playing under one coaching staff with one organizational style also helped immensely.

Pedigree can get you far in the NHL. Size can do it, too. Alex Barre-Boulet has neither of those so he needs to prove that he belongs in the Lightning’s organization through merit alone. [NHL dot com]

“I see a lot of opportunity here,” Barre-Boulet said. “I look at the way they have developed players with my type of skills and it’s a good place for me.”

“I wanted to go back to juniors at 20 and I was going to work as hard as I could to get an NHL contract,” Barre-Boulet said. “That’s was what I wanted to do.”

The Game

After being traded to the Calgary Flames in the Dougie Hamilton deal, Elias Lindholm has signed his first contract with the club. the pending Restricted Free Agent will make $4.85 million for the next six seasons. [Matchsticks and Gasoline]

With Lindholm in the fold for 6 years, the Flames now have the core of their team locked up long term. The native of Sweden will join Johnny Gaudreau, Sean Monahan, Mikael Backlund, James Neal and Mark Giordano as Flames players who are under contract for the foreseeable future. The Flames will no doubt be looking to add Matthew Tkachuk and Mark Jankowski to that list as well.

Adam Henrique also signed an extension with his current team. Traded from the New Jersey Devils to the Anaheim Ducks for Sami Vatanen, Henrique is in the final year of a contract that pays the 28-year-old $4 million. He will now make $5.85 million per season for the following five seasons (starting in 2019-20). [Sportsnet]

The deal announced Monday runs through the 2023-24 season and allows Henrique to avoid free agency next summer.

”That was a goal for me, just to get something done this summer if the team wanted to as well,” he said on a conference call. “I’m very happy we have it done now and can just focus on training and get ready for camp and the upcoming season.”

Down Goes Brown subtweets the Montreal Canadiens, Ottawa Senators, and Flames in his article entitled: “Down Goes Brown: Six times an NHL team had to trade a star and won” [Sportsnet]

We’re still waiting on an Erik Karlsson deal. We’re still told that the Lightning and Stars are the frontrunners, but the rumour mill has largely gone cold and a deal no longer seems imminent. Some reports now suggest that Pierre Dorion could even end up holding on to Karlsson until training camp, if not beyond.