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Lightning Round: A quick check on the Syracuse Crunch

It wasn’t a great week.

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Scott Thomas Photography

Due to some early holiday here at Raw Charge, the regular Crunch Wrap post for this week has been preempted. Seeing as to how the writer who normally covers them (that’s me!) is currently eating his face off in New Orleans instead of writing about them we’ll just do a quick sum up of last week.

Let’s take a look....

Well now, it looks like we didn’t miss much during that trip to Cleveland now did we? The Crunch managed just two goals in the two games against the Monsters as they lost 2-1 in overtime on Wednesday and 5-1 on Friday. The goals were scored by Shawn Element (his first career AHL goal) in the first game and Gabriel Fortier (his third of the season) on Friday.

While the score of Friday’s game might not reflect it, there was some good news as Max Legace returned to the net for the Crunch for his first game since he was injured against Cleveland on opening night. The veteran’s return will help ease the load on rookie Amir Miftakhov (who had another strong game, stopping 34 of 36 shots in the overtime loss on Wednesday). Chances are Miktakhov has earned the right to stay up in Syracuse even when Hugo Alnefelt is cleared to play again, and the young Russian will likely split starts with Legace.

It would have been nice for the Crunch to have been able to add Alex Barre-Boulet to their forward corps, but his return to Syracuse was quite brief as he was back in Tampa before he could even suit up for the AHL team. They’ll have to figure out how to score consistently without help from their NHL affiliate.

They will finish up their November portion of the schedule with three games, all at home, this week. First they take on the Belleville Senators on Wednesday. Then it’s a weekend series with Lehigh Valley coming to town on Friday and the Rochester Americans closing out the month on Saturday. We’ll have regular coverage of the games back next week.

Lightning / NHL News

With injuries mounting, Lightning need others to step up [Raw Charge]

It’s going to take better play from all 20+ members on the Lightning roster in order to fill the void left by Brayden Point.

Solar Bears Recap [Raw Charge]

Tyler Bird had himself a week upon his return to Orlando. In five games he recorded five goals and added two assists.

With Point out, an opportunity for Alex Barre-Boulet [Tampa Bay Times]

As we’ve mentioned, this is the perfect opportunity for BB to show what he can do at the NHL level. Instead of trying to earn time on the fourth line, he should see a lot of ice time in the top-six. Now he has to show that he belongs up there.

Down Goes Brown Power Rankings [The Athletic]

Despite the loss of Point, the Bolts maintain a spot in DGB’s top five teams. While we’re on the subject of power rankings, NBC Sports has them sixth, and TSN has them fifteenth.

As we split hairs and worry about the Lightning despite their 10-4-3 record, imagine being a fan of an actually bad team like the Vancouver Canucks. It doesn’t sound like things are going all that well out there.