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Quick Strikes: Lightning prospect Nolan Foote named captain of the Kelowna Rockets

The Syracuse Crunch are getting ready for the home opener

NHL: SEP 21 Preseason - Lightning at Predators Photo by Danny Murphy/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Bolts

Cedric Paquette has missed the start of the season due to an injury. But according to the latest reports, he’s close to a return to the line-up. Geo looks at the options for who will be replaced. [Raw Charge]

With all of that said, I think he’s kept himself in a fine position to remain in the lineup on the third line. Replacing Joseph with Paquette would mean that Verhaeghe would be moved up to the third line. While that might be beneficial for Verhaeghe going forward, I don’t think at this moment that he’s better than Joseph in that spot.

Our new NHL Power Rankings are out. [Raw Charge]

The other team Lightning fans should be keeping an eye on all season is the Vancover Canucks. If they make the playoffs, the Lightning will get the Canucks’ first round pick in 2020. If Vancouver misses the playoffs, the Lightning get an unprotected pick in 2021, which could be a top ten pick if the Canucks continue to be as bad as they’ve been over the last few years. So far, they look like an outer edge bubble team and maybe worse than that. We don’t want to get ahead of ourselves but if they miss the playoffs this year, rooting for them to lose next season could be lots of fun.

Tampa Bay Lightning beat writer Bryan Burns reviewed the latest game against the Boston Bruins. [NHL.com]

A penalty kill that was praised for its work in Montreal was befuddled in Boston. The Bruins scored six seconds into their opening power play to grab the game’s first goal. They went back in the lead 2-1 after converting their third power play. And an unfortunate deflection off a skate on a centering feed with the Lightning trying to preserve the win in regulation allowed the Bruins to come away with a point.

The Athletic’s Joe Smith also shared his thoughts on a Thursday’s win. [The Athletic, paid content]

As much improvement as the Lightning have made — and taking seven of 12 possible points in a stretch of six consecutive road games is nothing to sneeze at — there’s still a long way to go. Tampa Bay faces three top-tier teams at home this week, with Colorado on Saturday, the Penguins on Wednesday and the Predators the following Saturday before a two-week trip to New York and Sweden. The penalty kill, which we’ll get into with more depth in the coming days, can’t continue to be the Achilles’ heel.

Andrei Vasilevskiy and Curtis McElhinney on why they became a goalie. [NHL.com]

“I played forward a couple years when I was 8 or 9 but I told my dad it was too tough to be skating that much and I wanted to just stay in the blue paint and make saves,” Vasilevskiy said, laughing at the memory. “But now I understand goalie is much, much harder than to be a player.”

The Prospects

The Lightning’s 2019 first round pick Nolan Foote has become the 25th captain in the history of the Kelowna Rockets from the WHL. An interesting fact: his older brother Cal was the previous captain of the team.

Nolan’s first interview as a captain.

According to Syracuse.com, Mike Condon is out for an indefinite period due to a lower body injury [Syracuse.com]

Crunch coach Ben Groulx said Friday that veteran Mike Condon is out with a lower body injury and it’s uncertain when he’ll be back. Groulx said Condon was hurt during a workout on Tuesday and had to leave the ice because of discomfort.

Condon skated Wednesday but apparently did not feel much better. Thursday was an off day and Condon did not skate Friday.

The Syracuse Crunch are playing their home opener tonight. You wouldn’t want to miss the game after seeing this tweet.

The Crunch mic’d up Alex Barre-Boulet during their annual Welcome To Town event.

The new edition of Crunch Weekly with Peter Abbandonato and Jimmy Huntington is out.

Sammy Walker has been named first star of the game after scoring the winning goal for the Gophers.

Unfortunately, the Orlando Solar Bears have been defeated by the Norfolk Admirals.

The Game

Nico Hischier signed a seven-year deal with the New Jersey Devils, worth around $7.25M AAV per season.

The new Seattle team is looking for candidates to join the Hockey Operations department.

Darren Helm received a $5,000 fine for slashing Elias Lindholm.

The Dallas Stars have lost their fourth game in a row.

Tonight’s Lightning opponent, the Colorado Avalanche, won their game last night against the Florida Panthers on Nathan MacKinnon’s overtime goal.