Quick Strikes: Bottom of the Atlantic

It’s dark down here. I don’t like it.

The Bolts

The Lightning have fallen to last place in the Atlantic Division (and the entire Eastern Conference) after losing to the second-worst team in the league. [Raw Charge]

Is it time for the Bolts to be sellers instead of buyers at the trade deadline? If so, who should they move? [Raw Charge]

Regardless of your position on the Lightning’s ability to make the playoffs, it’s clear that they have to make some changes if they want to contend for the Stanley Cup. Erik Erlendsson offers his suggestions about what moves need to be made. [Lightning Insider - Subscription]

At least one team has been scouting the Bolts pretty closely. “Keep an eye on the Blues. GM Doug Armstrong caught the Lightning games Monday and Tuesday in Southern California after the Blues finished their West Coast trip. It could have been coincidence and convenience, but good friends Armstrong and Yzerman both need to make a move.” [Tampa Bay Times]

It wouldn’t be a proper day in the Lightning organization unless someone was called up or sent down to Syracuse. Joel Vermin was sent back yesterday. [Tampa Bay Lightning]

Here’s your daily “Where is Erik Condra flying today?” update.

Looks like his location is still up in the air.  Haha. Okay, you try doing these links when the Bolts are this depressingly bad.

The League

Claude Julien’s position as head coach of the Boston Bruins may be in jeopardy, but he remains focused on coaching this team instead of worrying about the rumors. “My job every day is to come in and try to fix things. Until I’m told otherwise, that’s what I’m going to keep doing. I (was) mentally prepared to go through those struggles with these guys this year and work through it.” [Puck Daddy]

Good news for Jets fans (and fans of hockey in general)! Patrik Laine is nearing his return after suffering a concussion. "We got a good workout on the ice," said Laine after the practice. "It was nice to get that yellow [non-contact] jersey off and get ready to play." [Sportsnet]

“An NHL goaltender's mask is not only the one thing standing between a man's head and a 160-kilometre slapshot — it is also Sylvie Marsolais' canvas. The Montreal-area airbrush artist is one of a small group who paint masks for the league's top goalies.” [The Record]

It’s been a rough season with very little entertainment, so here’s a video of Russian Nikita Kucherov and Swiss Tanner Richard singing the national anthem of the United States. It’s weird and wonderful. Enjoy.