Quick Strikes: Sam Bennett to the Tampa Bay Lightning?

Tyler Johnson returns and the Syracuse Crunch lose

The Bolts

Sam Bennett hasn’t lived up to his fourth-overall pick in 2014 potential in Calgary, so Elliotte Friedman brought up that the Flames might want to find him a fresh start somewhere else. He says that throughout the years, the Anaheim Ducks, Montreal Canadiens, Philadelphia Flyers, and Tampa Bay Lightning have expressed interest in Bennett. It probably doesn’t mean anything, but if Julien BriseBois has interest and could bring in an asset like that for cheap, why not. [Sportsnet]

1. A quick whistle erased Sam Bennett’s first goal of the season Tuesday night in Nashville, but he did play 13:27 — his highest of the year. He saw 8:47 and 7:01 in the opening two games against Vancouver. The list of teams who’ve inquired about him through the years includes Anaheim, Montreal, Philadelphia and Tampa Bay. I’m not convinced the Flames want to trade him, knowing he’s 22 and could blossom elsewhere. Just something to watch, as he searches for a fit with a new coach and changed roster.

Since there was no hockey for the Lightning this week, Lauren and I got bored kicking a soccer ball around the Raw charge offices so we decided to match a player on the Lightning with an Avenger from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It was a lot of fun, Lauren even joked that it almost felt like writing dating profiles. [Raw Charge]

Scott Lang has never quite followed the straight and narrow path; he’s had to improvise a lot in order to get where he is. But Lang is a great person to have on your side, especially when it comes to friendly banter! Both Lang and Conacher use their size to their advantage. Like Lang, Conacher is a family man who knows where his loyalties lie, especially when the going gets tough. He spent a little time in the quantum realm, also known as Switzerland, but he’s back and better for it.

And let’s be real, you could totally see Cory being Phoebe’s boyfriend in Friends.

The Lightning are “restarting” their regular season Thursday in a game against the Vancouver Canucks and Tyler Johnson will be in the lineup! He will return to Brayden Point’s wing, a place where he’s played well. [Tampa Bay Times]

“I might have a little rust,” Johnson said. “I don’t know. We will see how it goes. But I am playing with some really good players that are going to help me out. Hopefully we get back into it right away.”

Anthony Cirelli is in his first full year with the Tampa Bay Lightning, but he has more experience than rookie Mathieu Joseph, a player whom he’s become a calming presence for. [NHL dot com]

That familiarity allowed Joseph to settle down after a forgettable opening period. The rookie saw over a minute of action on the power play. He was an integral part of a penalty kill that went 5-for-5 against the Panthers and produced the game-tying goal. And he even came over the boards for a shift during the 3-on-3 overtime session, illustrating how much trust the coaching staff has in him so early in his career.

And here are some updates from Wednesday’s practice in Brandon including the forward lines, Braydon Coburn’s surprising offensive flair, and a injury updates. [Tampa Bay Times]

Conacher and Martel likely will be healthy scratches Thursday if these lines are any indication and Johnson returns. Callahan continues to nurse a shoulder injury. He continues to be full contact, though. The five-month recovery process after shoulder surgery would put his expected return to game action in early November.

The Prospects

The Syracuse Crunch lost their second game of the season 6-3 to the Rochester Americans. Undrafted rookie Alex Barre-Boulet scored once again for the Crunch, making it two for two for him this season. [Syracuse]

Barre-Boulet evened the score on the power play with less than one second remaining in the period. The rookie center walked through the right circle and sniped one short side. Gabriel Dumont and Erik Cernak recorded the helpers.

Alexander Volkov has signed with Dan Milstein and his hockey agency. Volkov’s entry-level contract expires in 2020. Milstein also represents Nikita Kucherov and several other high profile Russian players.

War Memorial Arena is new and improved! Follow Brent Axe as he takes you through a tour!

Patrick William’s AHL Notebook returns for another season! It’s a great way to keep up with the prospects in the AHL on a daily basis.

Carter Struthers is heading from Orlando, Florida to St. John’s, Newfoundland in an ECHL trade for future considerations. [Orlando Solar Bears]

The Game

With Matt Murray injured, Casey DeSmith and Tristian Jarry will have to hold the net for the Pittsburgh Penguins. Can they do it? [Pensburgh]

Most important, is concern for Murray himself. He is still only 24 years old, has only played in 157 games (regular season and playoffs) and has already been officially diagnosed with threeconcussions (that we know of) in his career. That is a lot. That is a shockingly large number for someone with so little NHL experience, and that’s not good. I know fans get frustrated with the little nagging injuries he has dealt with throughout his career, but they haven’t always resulted in a lot of missed time on the ice.

Oh woe is the Washington Capitals, nothing ever good happens to them. They don’t even have to pay the full penalty of having a suspended player.

The New York Rangers are 0-3-0 to start the year, so now no one’s spot is safe, that includes Vladislav Namestnikov. [Blueshirt Banter]

Vladislav Namestnikov was a healthy scratch for the New York Rangers against the Buffalo Sabres on Oct. 6. Head coach David Quinn chose to sit him in favor of playing 34-year old enforcer Cody McLeod. Needless to say, that was quite a fall from grace for a player who is coming off of a career-year in terms of production and is in the first year of a new two-year, $8 million contract.

Boy, Team North America was a heck of a thrill ride. Craig Custance takes us back to the day the NHL’s Future arrived. [The Athletic]

Maybe it didn’t determine an Olympic tournament or decide a Stanley Cup or really have any serious consequence whatsoever, but let’s not allow that to interfere with the legend. It was Connor McDavid playing on a line with Auston Matthews. It was Nathan MacKinnon being set up by Johnny Gaudreau. It was Team Sweden veterans Erik Karlsson and Henrik Lundqvist and the Sedins matching the youthful star power shift for shift. The first 95 seconds of regulation had two goals and a penalty shot. The last 90 seconds of overtime was even better.

It was incredible.

Highlight of the Night: The Arizona Coyotes got their first goal of the season!