Quick Strikes: Injuries and suspensions shuffled Lightning and Crunch lineups

There was a lot to unpack yesterday — and the Bolts also walked over the Flames.

The Bolts

Tampa Bay beat Calgary handily last night as several players finished with multi-point games. The offense has returned, and it doesn’t look like it’s going anywhere:

Since being shutout for the first time last Thursday against St. Louis, the Lightning have gone on to score 16 goals over their last three games. They’ve outscored their opposition 16-9 over this winning streak and any claims that their offense had dried up have quickly been rescinded. [Raw Charge]

Nikita Kucherov (who is dangerously close to 90 points) spoke about how his mindset towards scoring slumps has changed this season:

“It used to be, if I wasn’t scoring, I would always get down on myself so hard,” Kucherov said. But this season, teammates and coaches have sensed a change. A more “relaxed” Russian. [The Athletic]

There was a lot of confusion at morning skate yesterday when neither Erik Cernak nor Mathieu Joseph were participating. It was later revealed both players were injured:

The Bolts recalled Jan Ruutta from Syracuse to take Cernak’s place, and sent Joseph down to make room on the roster:

Tampa will host the NHL’s American Legacy Black Hockey History Tour truck on Saturday:

Thanks to their high-scoring first half of the season, the Lightning matched a franchise record:

Retired banker and philanthropist David Straz called for an investigation to be made into Lightning owner Jeff Vinik:

“Let’s get some transparency and find out what’s going on. If you look at some of the blogs you can get a feeling that not everything’s great. We need to investigate that much more further,” Straz said. [Tampa Bay Times]

Lightning Made is hosting an LGBTQ+ hockey clinic at Amalie Arena:

The Prospects

Now we get to how the Crunch (and Solar Bears) were affected by the Bolts injuries — as well as other things.

Gaunce’s suspension, and a bunch of injuries up front, led to the Crunch recalling Jonne Tammela:

Julien BriseBois offered an update on Kevin Lynch:

Here’s some good Syracuse news — they’ve been lethal shorthanded all season:

Plus, they gave us some pretty great Valentine’s cards:

There’s an opportunity for hockey fans in Syracuse to be extras in a movie!

“Odd Man Rush” needs extras to fill the Clinton Arena for some game scenes on Wednesday and Thursday. Shooting will be from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., and fans are asked to stay between two and three hours. [Syracuse dot com]

And there was also some good news for the Solar Bears:

The Game

The NHL slapped Evgeni Malkin with a suspension:

Mark Borowiecki spoke out about why it was important for him to attend a Pride event:

The Rangers made a very small trade:

Speaking of the Rangers, Blueshirt Banter took a look at contracts that haven’t reflected well on the organization:

Contracts with term are, by nature, risky in professional sports because of injuries, the natural decline of athletes, and the human factor. Sometimes things just happen, and sometimes those things can have disastrous consequences. Today, we’re going to look at some contracts from the last dozen years or so that have haunted the Rangers. Note: The Scott Gomez contract was a successful exorcism and is therefore not included in this article. [Blueshirt Banter]

Also, Henrik Lundqvist set another NHL record:

Yesterday was 39 years to the first game the 1980 Miracle Team played:

Apparently the Boston Bruins didn’t get the memo of vague injury updates. Poor Pastrnak.

Avalanche prospect Cale Makar has been having an amazing season with Massachusetts. He’s the favorite to win the Hobey Baker and we should see him in the NHL soon:

His prowess as an athletic, puck-moving, smooth-skating, technically gifted defenseman has played a role in why Massachusetts is in contention to win its first national championship. [The Athletic]

Someone needs to save the Oilers from themselves. Seriously. It’s getting frightening.

“Hopefully, we’re buying. We’re six points out with a game in hand. We’re not out of it. But in a (couple) weeks, we’ll see where we’re at.” [The Athletic]

Carter Hart has been Philadelphia’s MVP this season:

The rookie netminder, who is almost single-handedly resurrecting any sort of hope for a trip to the Stanley Cup Playoffs in the ‘City of Brotherly Love,’ is on an almost unprecedented run as a first-year stopper. [Elite Prospects]

And to wrap, Caley Chelios joined TSN as an analyst for the USA-Canada Rivalry Series. The entire broadcast’s on-air team was comprised of women, which was amazing: