Quick Strikes: Highlights from Fan Post Sunday and more

News from a rather sleepy Sunday in June.

The Bolts

Our Fan Post Sunday is going strong in its second week. This time, we selected a great entry from VanillaEars, who took a look at one of the rough spots in the Tampa Bay Lightning’s otherwise stellar season. [Raw Charge]

Today, I’ll be discussing the most polarizing part of the Tampa Bay Lightning’s game this season: the much-maligned penalty kill. With the recent developments that Rick Bowness, former assistant coach in charge of the defensive corps and PK, has been let go, I thought I’d take a look at our penalty kill which was decent to start the season but then ended up as a tire fire.

The Prospects

Goaltender Olivier Mantha finished as the 5th goalie in the Lightning organization last season. He spent most of his time with the Adirondack Thunder of the ECHL, and his media day exit interview was posted yesterday. The Lightning holds an option year to retain his services for 2018-19, although nothing has been said on this topic as of yet.

This isn’t really about the prospects, but its Syracuse Crunch connections are strong. Former Crunch player Jared Nightingale will be bringing his Great Lakes hockey camp back to Baldwinsville, NY:

The Game

Not being a Canadian NHL hockey fan, I don’t feel like I can sum up this hilarious article from Pension Plan Puppets correctly. (Seriously, no offense meant here, just sometimes I know I don’t get it and I’m not afraid to admit it) So, I’ll just let them do it. [Pension Plan Puppets]

The Maple Leafs have a pretty clever group of guys running things. Brendan Shanahan, Kyle Dubas, Brandon Pridham, Laurence Gilman and Mike Bacock are all smart in their own unique ways. But even the smartest people can be confused by life.

Here’s five things we made up to form a shameless listicle article to mock Steve Simmons.

After naming David Quinn head coach, the New York Rangers are now looking for an assistant coach. Some of these names might sound familiar to you all. [Blueshirt Banter]

Unlike a lot of teams that go through coaching turnovers, the Rangers don’t have guys they want to promote from within the organization. Keith McCambridge and his staff have only been in Hartford for one year. Gorton and company need to look outside of the organization to fill out the coaching staff, and Quinn is sure to have an opinion on who gets to stand beside him behind the bench.

I’ve been kind of/sort of ignoring the Toronto Marlies, farm team of the Toronto Maple Leafs, out of slight pettiness. However, I think I’m over it, and while I’m still rooting for Mike McKenna and the Texas Stars, I think it’s time to plug Hardev and his team again. [Pension Plan Puppets]

The Marlies will get two chances to hoist the Calder Cup at home. Game 6 will be on Tuesday night, with a potential Game 7 on Thursday night. These are the last two teams playing professional hockey right now, so you might as well be there!

AHL fans around the league have come out to support their teams playing late spring hockey for the past few seasons, and they deserve credit:

When push comes to shove, the American Hockey League is a developmental league. However, that shouldn’t mean winning takes a back seat. The Charlotte Checkers, farm team of the Carolina Hurricanes, are handling their job well. [Go Checkers]

Maintaining that balancing act is a formidable task, and one that Mike Vellucci handled well in his first season behind the Charlotte bench. Having spent his previous few years serving solely as one of Carolina’s assistant general managers, Vellucci was well-versed in the development side of things and carried that with him from day one on the Checkers’ job.

“It’s a fine line here,” he said. “We’re here to win and to develop. I think we did both this year with a young team. My job is to get these guys prepared to play in the NHL.”