The Tampa Bay Lightning is 31-28-6 with 68 points through 65 games. After 65 games last season, the Bolts were 37-21-7 with 81 points.
The Bolts are in fourth place in the Southeast Division and trail the division leading Florida Panthers by six points. Tampa Bay is in 10th place in the 15 team Eastern Conference, two points out of a playoff spot.
After 65 games, forward Steven Stamkos leads the team and the NHL in goals with 47. He leads the Bolts and leads the league in points with 80. Martin St. Louis is tops in assists with 39. Forward Teddy Purcell leads the team in rating with a +10.
Defenseman Eric Brewer leads Tampa Bay in ice time, averaging 23:30 per game. Steven Stamkos leads in shots on goal with 230.
The Lightning have scored 182 goals (10th in the NHL) and allowed 216 goals (30th (last) in the 30 team NHL). The Bolts power play improved this week, while the penalty kill suffered. The power play success rate is 15.02% (26th in the 30 team NHL) and the penalty kill is at 79.22% (25th in the NHL). The league average power play percentage is 17.57% and the average NHL team kills off 82.43% of their penalties successfully.
Tampa Bay is 22nd in the league in faceoff percentage, winning 49.0% of their draws.
Game 63 – Tampa Bay Lightning 2 – Montreal Canadiens 1
Game 64 – Tampa Bay Lightning 4 – New York Rangers 3 OT
Game 65 – Tampa Bay Lightning 4 – Carolina Hurricanes 3 OT
Three Stars of the Week
Teddy Purcell – Two goals and four assists.
Steven Stamkos - Four goals and an assist.
Martin St. Louis – Three assists.
The Lightning recalled forward Brandon Segal from Norfolk (AHL).
The Lightning recalled forward Pierre-Cedric Labrie from Norfolk (AHL).
The Lightning signed Cory Conacher (AHL) to a two-year, two-way contract.
The Lightning signed forward Danick Gauthier (QMJHL) to a three-year contract.
Defenseman Mattias Ohlund remains on IR after having major knee surgery.
Forward Dana Tyrell is out for the year after having successful knee surgery.
Defenseman Marc-Andre Bergeron is day-to-day with an upper body injury. He is contemplating season ending surgery.
Forward Vincent Lecavalier is out indefinitely with a broken hand. The Bolts are hoping to have him back in three to five days.
Defenseman Victor Hedman is day-to-day with an upper body injury but could return to practice on Monday.
The Bolts won three games this week, each one by one goal. The last two wins were both, two goal comebacks. Eight of Tampa Bay’s next nine games are at home.
Forward Teddy Purcell is riding a career best, nine game points streak. During that streak, Purcell has netted six goals and dished out 13 assists while playing on the Bolts top line.
Sports Club Stats has the Lightning’s playoffs chances at 20.2%.
The Week Ahead
The Quarterdeck Log – Norfolk Admirals Week In Review
By Ken Peacock
About The Author
A man with an identity crisis. A full time fan of all things hockey and supporter of the AHL’s Norfolk Admirals, the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Washington Capitals. A fan of two NHL teams in the same division? Really? Yes, it can be done. It’s tough, but it can be done. I am also a full time husband, IT Professional, and a Norfolk Admirals Hockey Blogger at Vultures Row.
The Admirals went into action this past Wednesday night riding a nine game winning streak. The Hershey Bears were making their final appearance of the season at Scope and were looking to put an end to Norfolk’s winning ways. The first period was a defensive battle as neither team could figure the goalies out. Cory Conacher broke the stalemate early in the second with an Admiral power play goal. Hershey answered back midway into the third on a Boyd Kane shot into an open Admiral net before Jaroslav Janus could get back into position. It would only take Norfolk two minutes to regain the lead as Tyler Johnson picked up a Bear turnover and fed it to Ondrej Palat. Palat skated through two Bear defenseman and sent a wrist shot past Braden Holtby for the go ahead goal.Norfolk shut down the Bears offense and the Admirals kept the streak alive with a 2-1 win.
The Springfield Falcons provided the opposition on Friday and Saturday night. The Admirals opened the scoring midway into the first period: Mike Kostka sent a shot towards the net that ended up behind the goaltender. Michel Ouellet swept the puck into the net before Paul Dainton could reach back and cover it. Ouellet would combine with Alex Picard and Mike Angelidis for the Admirals second goal at 4:15 of the second period. Ouellet picked off a Falcon pass and centered the puck to Picard. Picard fired the puck on net and Mike Angelidis collected the rebound and deposited the puck into the net. Nine minutes later Ouellet would score his second of the night on a nice pass from Richard Panik for a power play goal at 12:48. Radko Gudas made it 4-0 as he deflected a Scott Jackson shot past Dainton at 18:33 of the second period. Springfield put an end to Dustin Tokarski’s shutout bid on a Matt Calvert goal twelve minutes into the final frame. Norfolk continued to put the pressure on and capitalized on the power play with a goal from Philip-Michael Devos at 18:52 to seal a 5-2 victory.
Tension from Friday’s game carried over into the Saturday night match. Both teams were on the ice for warm-ups and the smack talking started. The Springfield Falcons Greg Amadio went to center ice trying to get Pierre-Cedric Labrie’s attention. Labrie was more than happy to discuss matters with him and proceeded to pound Amadio. With no officials or coaches on the ice, both teams gathered and players grabbed dancing partners. Mike Angelidis and the Falcon captain were able to get things under control as the teams finished warm ups.Norfolk was pumped up and it showed. The Admirals opened up the first period and grabbed an early 3-0 lead with goals for Cory Conacher, Michel Ouellet, and a shorthanded goal from Tyler Johnson. Both teams went scoreless in the second period.Springfield finally got on the board in the third with a goal from Brent Regner at 8:15. Richard Panik restored the Admirals three-goal lead two minutes later. Panik deflected a Cory Conacher shot past the Falcon net-minder at 10:19. Tyler Johnson closed out the scoring at 11:00 of the third to give the Admirals a 5-1 victory and extend the Norfolk win streak at 12 games.
Cory Conacher (31G 35A 66Pts +7), Trevor Smith (21G 36A 57Pts +26), and Mark Barberio (9G 42A 51Pts +20) find themselves at the top for scoring. Conacher was rewarded for his exceptional play with a two year deal with the Lightning. Dustin Tokarski (27-11-0 2.34GAA) went 2-0 this week. Jaroslav Janus (12-8-2 2.89GAA) went 1-0.
For the season the Admirals are 39-18-1-2 with 81 points. They are currently holding the top position in the AHL. Norfolk is currently on a 12-0-0-0 streak and is 10-0-0-0 in their last ten games.
Three Stars of the Week
Normally I would have three individuals listed as the three stars. Michell Ouellet, and Cory Conacher have had great games this week, but the whole team deserves to be in this section. The last twelve games have been an outstanding team effort. The Admirals are playing the best hockey of the season, and the best hockey since Tampa Bay has been the parent club. This week they all get the number one star.
Brandon Segal – Recalled by the Tampa Bay Lightning (NHL).
Mike Angelidis – Returned by the Tampa Bay Lightning (NHL).
Evan Oberg – Returned by the Tampa BayLightning (NHL).
Trevor Smith – Returned by the Tampa Bay Lightning (NHL).
Pierre-Cedric Labrie – Returned by the Tampa Bay Lightning (NHL).
Richard Petiot – Knee – Out for the season.
An Observation from the Stands
A twelve game win streak is no easy task. I was not sure what type of team to expect this season. As the season progressed I saw glimpses of greatness followed up by questionable moves that resulted in losses. I thought it would be a long season. The Admirals have proven me wrong and pulled off a winning streak for the ages and are playing some of the best hockey I have seen here inNorfolk. I cannot wait to see this team in the playoffs. They have come together as a team and battled through injuries and call ups and they continue to win. Other teams have called our player “cocky”. There might be some truth to that, but it doesn’t matter. What matters is in the standings.Norfolkhas opened up some distance between themselves and division rivals Hershey and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. There are sixteen games remaining in the regular season and then the real fun begins. This is the team to watch…..Keep it going boys.
The Week Ahead
Norfolk is on the road this week. They will be making stops in Adirondack on Friday, Connecticut on Saturday and Bridgeporton Sunday. The Admirals return home on Wednesday, March 14 against the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins.
The Rumor Mill
Could the Admirals exit Norfolk? Read it here!
Follow Ken Peacock on Twitter @VBKen.
About the Author: WB Philp is a published hockey writer who has a built in disdain for Barry Melrose. He covered the Detroit sports teams for many years until he came to his senses and moved to the Sunshine State. He is a true puckhead on a mission from God (Gordie Howe) to make hockey relevant in the south. He lives in Hockey Bay USA and covers the Lightning full time. Did I mention he hates Barry Melrose?