The Tampa Bay Lightning are viewed by some as a contender out of the NHL’s Eastern Conference. If they do make that step forward, then it might be due in part to the talented prospects that the Lightning have working their way through the system.
The performances on Monday night of a quartet of the club’s youngsters was the most noteworthy of a handful of notable prospect outings in last night’s NHL preseason action.
Connolly makes a case in win over Stars
Lightning 2010 first round selection Brett Connolly has yet to live up to expectations placed on him when he was chosen sixth overall at the NHL Draft. Indeed, the former Prince George Cougars’ star may return to the AHL for more seasoning, but he tried to make that decision a difficult one for the Lightning coaching staff with a two-point performance against the Dallas Stars in a 5-1 Lightning win on Monday night. Connolly registered a goal and an assist in earning second star honors on the evening.
Connolly was not the only Lightning prospect to contribute in the win, however. Another two-point performance came from forward Cedric Paquette, who registered a goal and assist on the night. Vladimir Namestnikov chipped in two assists, with one of those assists coming on a power play goal by Nikita Kucherov.
— Thomas R. Fernandez (@trfernandezNHL) September 27, 2014
It’s going to be 2013 Brett Connolly all over again when Vlad Namestnikov doesn’t make this #TBLightning roster.
— Kyle Alexander (@kalexanderRC) October 1, 2014
Ehlers nets game-winner in Jets win over Senators
The Winnipeg Jets‘ top pick at the 2014 NHL Draft, Nikolaj Ehlers, netted his first goal of the preseason, which ended up being the game-winning goal in the Jets’ 2-1 win over the Ottawa Senators. Ehlers pumped home an easy goal off a nice passing play that included an assist for another Jet’s prospect, Nic Petan.
Ehlers was named the second star in this game after registering his goal and three shots in nearly 15 minutes of ice time. Senators’ forward prospect Curtis Lazar was named the game’s third star after registering four shots and four hits on the night. Another Senators’ forward prospect, Buddy Robinson, netted a breakaway goal to make the score 2-1 late in the third period.
might be fun to watch Ehlers and Petan flying around once they’re ready. Likely two years away but when they arrive – look out
— gary lawless (@garylawless) September 30, 2014
First time watching Curtis Lazar live. He’s got skill, he’s smart and he’s feisty. #Sens need to find room for him on this team
— Ken Wiebe (@WiebeSunSports) October 1, 2014
Duclair scores in loss to Flyers
Although the outcome wasn’t in the New York Rangers‘ favor, the team had to be happy with the continued solid performance of prospect Anthony Duclair. The offensively talented forward netted another goal in preseason action, pulling his team within one goal early in the third period in what ended up as a 4-2 loss for the Rangers. Duclair fired home a shot off of a perfect pass by Dominic Moore to make the score 3-2 in the Philadelphia Flyers‘ favor.
— Andrew Gross (@AGrossRecord) October 1, 2014
Gaudreau named second star in Flames’ win
Forward Johnny Gaudreau scored the only goal the Calgary Flames needed in their 2-0 win over the Colorado Avalanche. Gaudreau dipsy-doodled the Avalanche’s Nate Guenin and beat goaltender Reto Berra to give the Flames a 1-0 lead.
— John Buccigross (@Buccigross) October 1, 2014
Gaudreau was named the game’s second star on the basis of that goal and five shots in 14:51 of ice time.
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