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Quick Strikes: Kucherov is James Bond and Hedman is Thor

The Bolts

With this year’s All-Star Game taking place in Los Angeles, the NHL has embraced a Hollywood theme. Here are the posters produced for Hedman and Kucherov.

The mental and physical fatigue of consecutive playoff runs could be contributing to the Lightning’s uneven season. “Long playoff runs, it takes its toll,” Kings coach Darryl Sutter said. “Guys are human. They’re not machines. Everybody looks at these sexy numbers, how many games they’ve played. Well they should factor in playoff games, they count almost as double.” [Tampa Bay Times]

With the Lightning at the bottom of the Eastern Conference, their immediate future is unclear. “Not making the dance this year however, could prove beneficial if the Lightning are able to turn it around for the 2017-2018 campaign and make another deep run. But, in order for them to do that, there will need to be some changes made in the off-season. It’s a matter of necessity at this point.” [Bolts Jolts]

The Lightning take on the Panthers tonight in Sunrise. Let’s take this opportunity to remember their epic match-up from earlier this season. (Stamkos trigger alert!)

If you need some positivity, follow along with the 91 Days of Stamkos series. Yesterday covered the momentous occasion when the Lightning handed out Steven Stamkos bobbleheads! Oh, and he also happened to score his 100th career goal that night. [Raw Charge]

A huge brand new skating facility in Wesley Chapel opened its doors yesterday. “The Florida Hospital Center Ice complex includes three National Hockey League size rinks, one Olympic rink and a junior rink.” [Tampa Bay Times]

Syracuse Crunch forward Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Leblond missed last night’s game, but he had a pretty good reason. Congratulations PL3!

The League

The Las Vegas Golden Knights are considering hiring a head coach sooner than expected. According to majority owner Bill Foley, “We might have our hire made before the end of the season.” [Las Vegas Review-Journal]

Calgary Flames forward Matthew Tkachuck is following in his father’s footsteps but still forging his own path. “I talk to him almost after every game,” said Matthew. “He knows he’s not my coach anymore but he’s just saying it as a guy who has been through it. And yeah, he gives me good advice.” [ESPN]

Bob McKenzie recently conducted his annual Mid-Season NHL Coaches’ Poll. The Washington Capitals received 15 votes and the Pittsburgh Penguins locked up 8 votes. “No other team in the East got a single vote to win the Conference or the Cup.” [TSN]

“Stan Mikita’s Donuts was the legendary (but fictional) cafe in Wayne’s World. Now, it comes to life at this year’s All-Star Game. Mike Myers, predictably, is thrilled.” [Sports Illustrated]

“The Albany Devils are on the verge of relocating to Binghamton, a move that will bring to an end the city’s longtime affiliation with the American Hockey League.” [Times Union]

Brian Campbell and Artemi Panarin have started a silly new web series called “Soup and A Sandwich.” (Get it? Because Campbell’s soup and Panerin [Panera] bread). Anyway, it’s really weird. Here are the first two episodes.

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