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Alex Barre-Boulet recalled by Tampa Bay Lightning

The forward is added to the taxi squad prior to the Lightning’s back-to-back games this week

NHL: NOV 30 Lightning at Blues

Prior to their game against the Florida Panthers, the Tampa Bay Lightning recalled forward Alex Barre-Boulet from the Syracuse Crunch of the AHL and placed him on the taxi squad. With six seven players already in COVID protocol, the Lightning need to make sure that they have players available should any more positive tests or injuries arise during their upcoming stretch of three games in four days.

After being re-acquired off of waivers from the Seattle Kraken earlier this season, Barre-Boulet posted 5 points (3 goals, 2 assists) in 14 games with the Bolts. The talented, but streaky, forward was re-assigned to Syracuse on December 6th as the emerging play of Boris Katchouk and Taylor Raddysh crowded him out of the Lightning line-up. In 4 games with the Crunch (who haven’t played since December 15th) he’s posted 4 points (1 goal, 3 assists).

Barre-Boulet joins Remi Elie and Darren Raddysh on the taxi squad (Andrej Sustr will join them once he clears COVID protocol) that was reinstated prior to Christmas as the NHL continues to manage the fallout from the rise of recent positive tests. Teams can have up to six players on the squad and players can stay on it for a maximum of 20 days. It’s likely that one of the two goalies called up (Hugo Alnefelt or Max Lagace) will also join the group once Andrei Vasilevskiy and Brian Elliott are done with their quarantines.

Syracuse isn’t scheduled to play until next Wednesday against the Rochester Americans so at this point the players aren’t missing any actual game time while they are up in Tampa.

For Barre-Boulet, he may have another chance to crack the line-up and make an impact (especially with Taylor Raddysh just added to COVID protocol). While his offense has been noticeable at times, he hasn’t maintained the consistency that Coach Cooper and his staff require from their players, especially forwards. He has the talent to be a regular in the NHL, but he has to adapt to a role he’s normally not suited for, especially if he’s going to stay in this organization. Even with Nikita Kucherov and Anthony Cirelli out for now, there isn’t much room for Barre-Boulet in the top-six, so he has to accept and flourish as a third-or-fourth liner, something that he’s struggled with in previous stays with the Bolts.