Vlad the Impailer and Mr. Rogers

With the #6 defensiveman slot empty, the Lightning will be looking at prospects and minor leaguers to fill the void (alogn with the possible veteran signing)... I've already stated that Mike Egener will get a look at training camp this year but the look actually starts early -- in Traverse City.

2004 First round draft choice Andy Rogers and 2005 first round draft choice Vladimir Mihalik will both be examined by Lightning brass to see if they're ready for an extended look at the Lightning camp in Brandon. Jay Feaster will not rush either defensiveman and put them where they aren't ready to play (Mihalik is likely headed to Red Deer of the WHL and Rogers, I'm assuming, would be poised to join the Springfield Falcons of the AHL).

Yet Jay's got to take a serious look - if not for the current roster opening, then for next year when there could be another defensive opening on the Lightning (Pavel Kubina is a UFA under the terms of the new CBA).