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Lightning Round: Not the Lightning prospect you expect makes Team USA’s WJC camp roster

Jakub Voracek is out long-term with a concussion

NCAA HOCKEY: APR 07 Div I Men’s Frozen Four - Denver v Michigan
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 07: Michigan Wolverines forward Dylan Duke (56) skates away from Denver Pioneers forward Carter King (15) during a Frozen Four semifinal between the Michigan Wolverines and the Denver Pioneers on April 7, 2022 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.
Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Isaac Howard is the flashy top prospect in the Tampa Bay Lightning’s system with all the skill in the world to be a shoe-in for Team USA’s Men’s World Juniors roster. But he’s not going this year as he was left of the team’s camp roster mere weeks before the tournament. Instead, fourth round pick in 2021 Dylan Duke has made the team after an impressive start to his second NCAA season at Michigan.

Howard likely didn’t make the roster for two reasons. First, he is still eligible for the tournament next year while Duke is a year older. Second, Howard only has one goal and five points in 14 games (and a -10) as a rookie in the NCAA. He’s hit a big learning curve that, while not uncommon, has hindered him from a short tournament like this.

For Duke, he is the first homerun pick the Lightning have had in a while — so far. A goal-scorer who was a point per game with the USNTDP, who kept scoring on the third line in Michigan, and has been promoted this season into the top six, sometimes on the first line. While not often considered among the NHL’s top prospects, he’s been scoring among them and now has a chance to show it on a big stage.

Mark Steven Stamkos’ 1000th point with this custom t-shirt from BreakingT, our apparel partner. Their “On Point” shirt is my favorite summer shirt.

Jakub Voracek has announced that he’ll be out long-term with concussion symptoms. The 33-year-old Czech forward last played a month ago and has two years remaining (including this one) on his contract. Voracek has 806 career points in 1058 career games.

McDavid and Robertson are basically just staples to these lists every week. Good on Dylan Cozens for joining them.

The Seattle Hockey Analytics Conference was last weekend and experts released some interesting research into aging curves and peaks for forwards and defenders, among many other things. Improving Expected Goals is a priority as always. You can find the full 7 hour stream below. There’s lots of dead time you can skip between.

The Vancouver Canucks nearly healthy scratched Brock Boeser on Hockey Fights Cancer night, until one of his teammates got injured after morning skate. Boeser’s father passed away in May from cancer. [Daily Faceoff]

Honestly I don’t care if Boeser deserved to sit or not. Not too long ago he was riding a nine-game point streak. But a coach always has the right to not dress a player. If Boeser’s defensive play wasn’t good enough for Boudreau, I understand why the Canucks bench boss would want to send a message.

But it was the wrong night. And Boeser’s situation is exactly how you blow up a locker room. Any goodwill towards the Vancouver organization from its own players just went out the window.

Shane Wright is back in the NHL after four goals in five games.

Toronto might be where the next NHL All Star Weekend will be hosted. The Leafs haven’t hosted an ASG since 2000.