After a brief respite in the AHL, Mathieu Joseph has returned to the Tampa Bay Lightning roster, as if it was ever in doubt. Joseph had to be sent down in order for the Lightning to call up defenseman Jan Rutta from the Syracuse Crunch as insurance at that position as a result of the injury to Victor Hedman. Heddy is healthy now, meaning Joseph and Rutta were able to be swapped back. [NHL dot com]
Remember when most teams in the NHL had the opportunity to draft Nikita Kucherov — who was a very good player even in his draft year — but didn’t? Good times. [Raw Charge]
Biggs has not made it to the NHL. Percy has made it into 12 NHL games. What may hurt the Maple Leafs more in this is that the two picks they used to trade up for Biggs were used to select Rickard Rakell and John Gibson.
Radko Gudas hit Kucherov in the head with his stick in a deliberate fashion during the Philadelphia Flyers vs. Tampa Bay Lightning game. Gudas has since been given a two-game suspension. You can find the explanation video and Gudas’ history in the link to your right (or below if the text wrapped). [Raw Charge]
Gudas received a two minute minor in the game for the infraction, but after review the NHL determined that he deserved a more severe punishment. Gudas has a record of playing on the edge, and of suspensions with the league.
Broad Street Hockey felt within themselves to sing our praises, and honestly we appreciate them so much for it. We are the best! [Broad Street Hockey]
Tampa chased Carter Hart early, going up 3-0 on nine shots in the first 10:23 of the game. Brian Elliott performed admirably in relief, especially considering he hasn’t played an NHL game since November 15, stopping 22 of 23, but it just wasn’t enough to complete a trilogy of ridiculous comebacks.
AMALIE Arena is hosting a hiring expo for all military members and their families. Titled “Hiring our Heroes.” [NHL dot com]
The Tampa Bay Lightning are partnering with the United States Chamber of Commerce Foundation and their Hiring Our Heroes initiative to host a job fair expo at AMALIE Arena on Thursday, February 21st from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. The hiring expo is free and open to active duty service members, Guard and Reserve, veterans and military spouses.
My amazing wife talking about the Ryan Callahan Foundation!! Don’t miss our event this Friday. Come play some casino games with your favorite lightning player and raise money for a great cause. https://t.co/UnWrPLtlkD for tickets pic.twitter.com/53nPNkiLiC— Ryan Callahan (@TheRealCally24) February 20, 2019
Don’t fret about the Trade Deadline. This team is amazing and we can beat anyone in the league on their best day with one of Vasy’s hands behind his back. [Tampa Bay Times]
The reality is Tampa Bay is not going to dramatically change its roster in the next few days. There are no 30-goal scorers or two-way defensemen booking flights. The Lightning already has a bevy of stars, and there’s no need to jeopardize future salary caps or trade away draft picks for gaudy additions.
Ignoring what I just wrote above, the Lightning have some amazing depth options hiding in Syracuse right now that teams might be able to snatch up if the right trade pops up. [NHL dot com]
Stephens, a second-round pick (No. 33) in the 2015 draft, has had to battle through injury after a strong rookie AHL season. The 22-year-old returned to play Feb. 8 after missing all but two games in the previous three months and scored two goals in his first game. Stephens (6-0, 193) has 11 points (five goals, six assists) in 15 games. Last season he had 41 points (19 goals, 22 assists) in 70 AHL games.
Cory Conacher is moving up the franchise record list in Syracuse. Guy’s a legend.
Conacher's goal also puts him alone in ninth place in #SyrCrunch franchise history in scoring with 153 points, breaking his tie with Larry Courville. Next up is Derek Walser at 154 points and then Yanni Gourde at 157 points.— Lukas Favale (@LukasFavale) February 21, 2019
You can read a full recap of the Crunch’s 4-2 rebound win over the Laval Rocket. [Syracuse]
The Syracuse Crunch opened scoring with back-to-back goals and maintained control in a 4-2 victory over the Laval Rocket on Wednesday at the War Memorial Arena. The Crunch is now on a nine-game home points streak and sit at 31-16-2-2 on the season. The team has a 3-1 lead in the six-game series against the Rocket.
Throwback to the first-ever AHL outdoor game!
The Boston Bruins and Minnesota Wild made a trade late on Wednesday afternoon. Charlie Coyle was sent from the Wild to the place where he grew up and played college hockey (Boston) in exchange for young and promising prospect Ryan Donato and a fifth-round pick. Below is an opinion of the trade from each side of the isle.
Not official but hearing the trade is Coyle to BOS in exchange for Ryan Donato and a fifth-round pick. Details to come.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) February 20, 2019
Boston Boy comes home for Bruins! [Stanley Cup of Chowder]
This is the most obvious spot for Coyle, as the Bruins have had a hole at 3C since approximately 1955. Trent Frederic has done fine, but hasn’t done anything do solidify that spot. Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson couldn’t seize that spot, and neither could David Backes and any number of others.
The Wild found youth and promise in Donato’s undetermined ceiling. And with Boston’s record with trading high-end talent before they realize themselves, they are hopeful. [Hockey Wilderness]
After leaving Harvard after the completion of their season, the Bruins wasted no time in getting Donato into the mix of playing up with the big boys. In just 12 games last season filling in for Bruins injuries, Donato scored 5 goals, while also picking up 4 assists in a short period of time that got Bruins fans really excited about the future with Ryan Donato in it.
Players the Bruins have traded away under the age of 25 -— Marisa Ingemi (@Marisa_Ingemi) February 20, 2019
* Phil Kessel
* Tyler Seguin
* Blake Wheeler
* Frank Vatrano
* Dougie Hamilton
* Ryan Donato
I’m sorry. I had to.
Maybe the Bruins thought they were getting Kendall Coyne??— Nikita Zaitsev appreciator (@HardevLad) February 20, 2019
With trade rumors swirling all over the place, it’s hard to nail anything down. Here’s a rumor roundup for the Metro Division teams ahead of the Trade Deadline this Monday. Other divisions coming soon. [Raw Charge]
The Penguins don’t have many draft picks, but they have their first, meaning Jim Rutherford is going to do something bold. The team has already acquired Nick Bjugstad and Jared McCann for Derick Brassard, Riley Sheahan, and a second. But it sounds like a defenseman is on their radar in the future.
For the Athletic readers, Tyler Dellow asks if handedness matters, especially when it comes to left-handed defensemen playing their off side. [The Athletic]
“There was a guy, I think he won seven Norrises, his name was Nick [Lidstrom] and he always would say to me ‘Why wouldn’t you put the guy who makes all the plays on his forehand?”’ Babcock said then. “It’s a great question.”
Highlight of the Night: Anyone making the Oilers look silly has got a friend in me.