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Category: Tampa-Bay-Lightning

Afternoon Line- Bob McKenzie

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink

A Very Candid Nikita Kucherov

from Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times,

Lightning star wing Nikita Kucherov delivered some pointed and strong criticism on his teammates and coaches Wednesday.

Kucherov, preparing to play for Russia at the World Championships, told Sovietsky Sport that some teammates "overstayed" with team, "got their money and stopped working." Kucherov also wondered why the team's lines were changed like a "kaleidoscope."

"Some guys overstayed in team," Kucherov told Sovietsy Sport, per translation. "They've got their money and stopped working. They knew there's no competition for their positions and the organization is not going to take someone else. They played not really well this year. You can see it in their stats and way of play. When we played together and I made a pass, they even were not expecting this. That's why this season was hard for me despite good stats."

continued which includes more from Kucherov...

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nikita+kucherov

Playoff Hopes Still Alive For The New York Islanders And Tampa Bay Lightning

from Neil Best of Newsday,

The Maple Leafs have 93 points and the Islanders 90 with two games apiece remaining. The Lightning also has 90 points with two left.

One road requires the Islanders to beat the Devils on Saturday and the Senators Sunday while the Maple Leafs lose both to the Penguins and Blue Jackets, with at least one of those losses coming in regulation time.

But for that math to work out, the Islanders would need to win both of their games in regulation or overtime, enabling them to pass the Maple Leafs in the regulation-and-overtime-wins tiebreaker if both finish with 94 points.

That reality could make for some complicated strategizing for Weight. In theory, it might benefit the Islanders to pull their goalie in overtime to secure a win before the shootout for tiebreaker purposes.


from Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times,

Making the playoffs is still a long shot, but the quest should make for a fun final 72 hours of the regular season. Tampa Bay needs to win its final two games, tonight in Montreal and Sunday at home against Buffalo, in regulation or overtime. Toronto must lose its final two games, both at home, Saturday against Pittsburgh and Sunday against Columbus; the Maple Leafs can't pick up more than one point.

Tampa Bay also needs the Islanders, tied with it in points but who hold the tiebreaker, to lose one of its final two games, Saturday at New Jersey or Sunday at home against Ottawa, or win one of them in a shootout.

"At this point, all we can do is put a little pressure on," defenseman Anton Stralman said. "And obviously hope that Pittsburgh and Columbus to do their jobs (beat Toronto). That's all we can ask for."


Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Islanders, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Video- Brad Marchand, Five For Spearing And A Game Misconduct

Done for the night in a big game.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brad+marchand

Quite The Comeback For The Tampa Bay Lightning

from Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times,

As much resilience as the Lightning has shown recently, this looked pretty darn bleak.

Like season-over bad.

With any loss potentially crippling Tampa Bay's perilous playoff hopes, it fell behind 4-1 midway through Monday's showdown with the Blackhawks. The Lightning's No. 1 goalie, Andrei Vasilevskiy, had already been pulled and re-inserted into the game. The large portion of red-clad Chicago fans drowned out the sellout crowd of 19,092 at Amalie Arena.

Cooper summed up the feeling perfectly: "This (stinks).'"

But the Lightning didn't sink. It surprised — again —roaring back for a thrilling 5-4 overtime win over Chicago. Tampa Bay's third consecutive come-from-behind victory was a significant swing in the standings. It pulled the Lightning one point ahead of the Islanders and within one point of Boston for the final wild-card spot with seven games to go.

"We didn't quit," Cooper said. "We just kept hanging around, hanging around, hanging around."

Said wing Yanni Gourde: "We knew we could come back. We've got the firepower."

Gourde, a rookie who was in the ECHL just a few years ago, was the unlikely hero, scoring the overtime winner on a breakaway with just under a minute to go.


Watch the game highlights below...

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink

The Cap Issues For The Tampa Bay Lightning

from Mike Johnston of Sportsnet,

Steve Yzerman has done an incredible job cultivating talent for the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Since he became the GM in 2010 the team has been to three Eastern Conference finals, one Stanley Cup Final and they’re set up to be competitive for years to come with the core Yzerman has assembled.

The only thing that matters to the players and coaches at the moment is working through the recent spate of injuries, staying ahead of the Maple Leafs (who they play Thursday) and leapfrogging the Islanders (who occupy the final East wild card spot).

Beyond this season, however, is where it gets interesting for Lightning management—especially at forward. Between the upcoming expansion draft and the NHL’s salary cap system, Yzerman will be in a difficult position to keep that talented core intact heading into next season.

“It’s unfortunate. It really is,” former Lightning captain and the team’s VP of corporate and community affairs Dave Andreychuk told Hockey Central at Noon Thursday. “But again that’s the message we’ve sent out to everybody in this area…Listen, we live in a cap world, we understand where the cap’s going to be next year, and we don’t have enough money to keep our core together…Guys have to go.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Here Comes The Lightning

from Martin Fennelly of the Tampa Bay Times,

The Lightning is a hunter.

It went into Madison Square Garden and said as much Monday night.

It beat the Rangers, 3-2, to pull within a point of Toronto for the final wild card.

This is for real.

The Lightning is charging. For real.

The Bolts are at it again in Ottawa tonight. No rest.

With two goals from 21st-birthday boy Brayden Point, with back-up goalie Peter Budaj coming up with some big saves for his first Tampa Bay win, the Lightning continue to try and turn a feel-bad season into a feel-good one. Give them credit.

Where all this was in the first half of the season remains a mystery.

But they're doing it now, without Steven Stamkos, who is still out, and without Ben Bishop, without Brian Boyle, without Valtteri Filppula, all traded away. Now they're doing it without Tyler Johnson, out with injury.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink

All Ben Bishop

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

ESPN.com: How did you find out that you were headed to Los Angeles?

Ben Bishop: I was just sitting there. I think it was six o'clock at night, and I got a call from (Tampa GM) Steve Yzerman. Obviously I knew something had happened. And he called me and told me that he'd traded me to L.A. It wasn't a very long conversation and he said that Dean (Los Angeles GM Dean Lombardi) would be calling. And, sure enough, Dean called about a minute later. I had about an hour and 45 minutes to pack up and then get on a flight at 9 o'clock at night.

ESPN.com: This didn't come completely out of the blue for you, but was there still a moment of "Holy cow, is this really happening to me?"

Bishop: You can prepare yourself as much as possible, but when it happens still it's a little bit of a shock, I guess. Then you've got about two hours to get ready. You have to go to the rink to get your stuff. You just kind of sit there and reflect on your time in Tampa. It can be a little sad, obviously, but there's also a little bit of excitement about going to a new team. 

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Los Angeles Kings, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ben+bishop

Videos- A Sit Down With John Tortorella, McDavid Skill And Kucherov Impresses

via Sportsnet's YouTube channel,

John Tortorella speaks with Christine Simpson about his past mistakes as a coach and how he has approached his opportunity in Columbus.


Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, Edmonton Oilers, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: connor+mcdavid, john+tortorella, nikita+kucherov

The Tampa Bay Lightning Will Have A Busy Summer

from Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times,

The Lightning has an estimated $18 million in cap space next season, according to the cap website capfriendly.com. But is that enough to sign pending restricted free agents Drouin and forwards Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat this summer?

"It depends on the type of contracts that we sign," Yzerman said. "The terms of their contracts that will affect the cap number."

Some other contract-cutting moves will need to be done to fit all three deals under the cap, plus a veteran backup goalie and the long-needed top-four defenseman. That's why it wouldn't be surprising to see Johnson, Drouin or Palat packaged in a draft or summer deal for that defenseman. You wonder if any of the three was involved in the deal that Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk nixed with the Lightning in January.

I still think the Lightning and the defensemen-rich Predators — teams that scouted each other heavily leading up to the deadline — could circle back before the draft. 


Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com


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