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Lightning Round: On this day in 2004 Lightning re-acquire Vinny Prospal

A fan-favorite makes his second stop in Tampa.

Tampa Bay Lightning v Detroit Red Wings Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images

Happy Vinny Prospal Part II Day. On this day in 2004, while basking in the glow of their first Stanley Cup win, but with a lockout pending, the Tampa Bay Lightning made a trade to bring back an old favorite. They swapped a second round pick in 2005 for Vinny Prospal. As an unrestricted free agent the previous season Prospal chose Anaheim’s $16.5 million, 5-year contract over the $13.75 million, 5-year offer the Lightning made.

After just a season with the Ducks, he returned to the Lightning and was reunited with Vinny Lecavalier (who had pushed GM Jay Feaster to not let Prospal leave in the first place). In his second stint with the Bolts, Prospal averaged 23 goals and 64 points in just under three seasons. He was often on a line with Lecavaler, which allowed Coach John Tortorella to bump Marty St. Louis down to Brad Richards line.

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He had two really good seasons sandwiched around a season that saw him shoot a career-low 6.4% (he shot 10.6% for his career) and drop to 14 goals. That season was an abboration for a career with the Lightning that was pretty consistent. Despite never leading the team in scoring he is still eighth all time in franchise history with 371 points (127 goals, 244 assists).

A rather easy going player who responded well to the Tortorella-style of coaching. Who can forget the post-game interview he gave after scoring two goals against Montreal after Torts had demoted him to the second line.

That interview actually came during his third stint with the Lightning. They had traded him to Philadelphia at the 2008 trade deadline for Alexandre Picard and a second round pick that they used to draft Richard Panik. His rights were traded back to Tampa Bay the following offseason and he signed a four-year deal to stay in Tampa. He would only last a year before the new regime bought him out.

Lightning/NHL News

Some more Stanley Cup travels. It’s hung out in Montreal recently with Alex Killorn. Shockingly enough - he took it on a boat. [NHL.com]

Mathieu Joseph continued the long-standing tradition of eating things out of the Stanley Cup.

Julien BriseBois got to hang out with it as well.

Every Brayden Point goal from last season? Sure, why not?

Old friend Adam Erne re-signed in Detroit. The forward agreed to a two-year deal worth $2.1 million per season. He found a role on their bottom-six last season and pumped in a career-high 11 goals. With the Red Wings still rebuilding the forward corps, he should get an opportunity to move up to the bottom-six and provide some secondary scoring. [Winging it in Motown]

As the NHL navigates the Delta-varient phase of the COVID-19 they are continuing to roll out new protocols. The latest one involves the media. The league has announced that any member of the media (in-house and third party) will need to be vaccinated and masked if they interact with players or anyone in “hockey operations”. Seems like a sensible plan if they are going to allow media members to interact with players face-to-face as opposed to the Zoom press conferences that have been the norm since play returned. [Awful Announcing]