Lightning European Report

By Pete Choquette

Czech Republic

D Marek PosmykGPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 HC Zlin 458614137-3
2001-2002 HC Zlin (Playoffs)600010-1
2002-2003 HC Slavia Praha 2003310+8

Stock: Steady
Since Last Update: 11GP, 0G-1A-1P, 8PIM, (+6)
Slavia Praha has been on a roll lately in the Czech league and Marek Posmyk’s solid if unspectacular defensive play has been part of the winning equation. The team has climbed to third on the league table despite the fact Posmyk is well off his offensive pace of last season when he played for Zlin.

W Ivan Rachunek GPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 HC Zlin4891120141-3
2001-2002 HC Zlin (Playoffs)1134727+1
2002-2003 HC Zlin2054922NA

Stock: Steady
Since Last Update: 12GP, 4G-1A-5P, 22PIM, NA
Since returning from injury, Rachunek has shown far more offensive consistency. Zlin has spent much of the season trying to crawl out of second-to-last place in the league and will rely on Rachunek to chip in more goals if they are to succeed in that respect.


C/W Karri AkkanenGPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 Ilves (Jr.A)50114E
2002-2003 Ilves (Jr.A)1116765-2

Stock: Steady
Since Last Update: 8GP, 0G-2A-2P, 8PIM, (-6)
Akkanen has behaved himself since returning from suspension, but has failed to help Ilves’ Jr. A team pull out of last place in their division. On 10/30 he had 2 assists in a 4-3 win over HPK’s Jr. A team. (**All stats through 11/2)

LW Erikki RajamakiGPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 HPK561271975+9
2001-2002 HPK (Playoffs)81232+1
2002-2003 HPK2431438-6

Stock: Steady
Since Last Update: 13GP, 1G-0A-1P, 14PIM, (-2)
Rajamaki continues to struggle offensively in his third line checking role for HPK. However, he did manage to chip in a key shorthanded goal in a 4-3 win over Tappara on 11/14, in which he was named the game’s third star. The youthful HPK has had a surprising season, climbing into a tie for second place on the SM-Liiga table.

RW Eero SomervuoriGPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 HPK5625234834+25
2001-2002 HPK (Playoffs)82246+6
2002 Finland (Nat’l Team)62020E
2002-2003 HPK2412122422+8

Stock: Rising Slightly
Since Last Update: 13GP, 6G-9A-15P, 8PIM, (+5)
One of the reasons for HPK’s rise in the standings has been the continued outstanding play of winger Eero Somervuori. Despite the loss of several key foreign veterans from HPK’s roster and the added attention that teams have paid to his line, Somervuori is on a pace to better his scoring totals from last season by chipping in at a point-a-game pace. On 10/26 he scored the game-tying goal in a 1-1 tie with Ilves. On 11/1 he notched 3 assists in a 5-1 win over Lukko and was named the game’s third star. Two days later he assisted on both the game-tying and game-winning overtime goals in a 2-1 triumph over Karpat in which he was named the game’s first star. Then, on 11/23 he had a goal and an assist and was the third star of the game in a 4-2 win over Blues. Somervuori also had a power play goal in the first game of the Karjala Cup for Finland, which won the tournament going undefeated. Eero has also been named to the Baltic Cup squad for Finland and looks to have the inside track on a spot on the Finnish World Championship team.


D Sascha GocGPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 Alb/Spr (AHL)463141742-4
2001-2002 NJ/TB (NHL)90000-2
2002-2003 Adler Mannheim 2312359+7

Stock: Dropping Slightly
Since Last Update: 9GP, 0G-1A-1P, 49PIM, E
Sascha Goc still hasn’t found the offensive side of his game, and his defensive play has declined slightly since the last update. Mannheim has dropped to third on the DEL table behind Elsbaren Berlin and Kolner Hale. On 11/17, the team’s frustration came to the surface in a brawl filled loss to Kolner Hale in which Goc received 15 minutes in penalties including a major for roughing.


2001-2002 Yaroslavl4814112512NA
2001-2002 Yaroslavl (Playoffs)5011NANA
2002-2003 Russia (Nat’l Team)60116E
2002-2003 Yaroslavl251211238NA

Stock: Steady
Since Last Update: 12GP, 5G-3A-8P, 0PIM, NA
But continues to score at a clip every other Lightning European prospect, with the exception of Eero Somervuori, would envy. However, he has fallen of a point-a-game pace for the first time this season and Yaroslavl has looked inconsistent since the Karjala Cup break. As of 11/26 the team sat in a three-way tie for first place on the Superleague table with Avangard Omsk and Severstal Cherepovets. On 10/30 But had a goal and an assist in a 6-1 win over Nizhenkamsk and on 11/1 he had 2 assists in a 7-1 win over a strong Ak Bars Kazan club.

C/W Dimitry BezrukovGPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 Neftekhimik38561145NA
2002-2003 Spartak Moscow 25691510-2

Stock: Rising Slightly
Since Last Update: 12GP, 5G-4A-9P, 6PIM, (+1)
Bezrukov has been a far more consistent performer for Spartak in the past month as the team tries to avoid the relegation tournament. On 11/15 he scored two goals and one assist in a 3-1 win over Amur. However, despite Dimity’s efforts, Spartak is still second-to-last on the Superleague table just two points ahead of Molot Perm.

C/W Alexei GloukhovGPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 Khimik (Upper League) 30000NA
2001-2002 Khimik (Playoffs)1000NANA
2002-2003 Khimik (Upper League)122136E

Stock: Steady
Since Last Update: 5GP, 1G-1A-2P, 4PIM, (+1)
Gloukov has played in roughly half of Khimik’s games since the last update and has shown an ability to chip in offensively on the bottom two lines for the team. On 10/22 he scored a goal assisted by fellow Lightning prospect Pavel Sedov in a 5-3 win over Voronezh.

C/W Alex PolushinGPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 CSKA (Upper League) 5024194312NA
2002-2003 Russia (U-20 Team) 6279NANA
2002-2003 CSKA (Superleague)25*23512*NA

Stock: Steady
Since Last Update: 12GP*, 2G-1A-3P, 6PIM, NA
Polushin has been a very solid contributor for the Russian national team in U-20 tournaments so far this season, but Polushin has had a hard time translating that scoring touch to the Superleague. On 11/13 he finally snapped a 19-game goal-less streak notching a goal and an assist in a 4-0 win over Dimitry Bezrukov’s Spartak club. Two games later he notched another goal, giving the appearance that Polushin is on the verge of a very solid second half to the Superleague regular season.

W Pavel SedovGPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 Khimik (Upper League)141120NA
2002-2003 Khimik (Upper League)81230+4

Stock: Steady
Since Last Update: 8GP, 1G-2A-3P, 0PIM, (+4)
Since making his debut for Khimik this season, Sedov has become a regular player in the lineup chipping in at both ends of the ice and already posting more points this season than he did in the Upper League last season.

* Statistics are difficult to get in a timely fashion from Russia. Players not listed are: Dimitry Kazionov (Lada-2, Upper League), Vitaly Smolianinov (Voronezh, Upper League), Ilya Solarev (Kurgan Mostovike, Upper League), and Vasily Koshechkin (Lada-2, Upper League).


D Henrik BergforsGPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 Sodertajle (J-20)3744860+16
2002-2003 Orebro (Alsvenskan) 1100054-3

Stock: Steady
Since Last Update: 6GP, 0G-0A-0P, 29PIM, E
It’s important to reiterate just how bad a team the Orebro Pirates are. The club currently sits at 11th of 12 teams in the Alsvenskan southern division and is just a single point away from inhabiting the basement. Despite this fact, Bergfors has been just a minus-one in the last two updates and has earned a regular promotion to the team’s second pairing. The rugged North American style defender has yet to score a point in the Alsvenskan, but his defense is very promising indeed.

LW Johan HagglundGPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 Orebro (Alsvenskan) 36641050-15
2002-2003 Orebro (Alsvenskan)19861426E

Stock: Steady
Since Last Update: 11GP, 5G-1A-6P, 8PIM, (-2)
Hagglund was Orebro’s third leading scorer and is tied for second on the team in goals. His versatility allowed him to play nearly every position on the top two lines this season and on 10/30 he even played some shifts at defense for the Pirates. On 11/17 he scored two goals in a 5-2 loss to Rogle. He has been traded to Alsvenskan Norra powerhouse Hammarby as a result of Orebro’s financial troubles. Hammarby was Andreas Holmqvist’s club last season, and if Hagglund plays well there he will have a good chance of getting a contract with and SEL club in the next couple of seasons.

D Andreas HolmqvistGPGAPPIM+/-
2001-2002 Hammarby (Alsvenskan) 4211132497+15
2002-2003 Linkoping (SEL) 2025718-2

Stock: Dropping Slightly
Since Last Update: 9GP, 1G-2A-3P, 2PIM, (-7)
Linkoping has struggled in the last month and has dropped to ninth in the SEL standings. Not so surprisingly, Holmqvist has also struggled during that period and has been a minus-seven since the last update. As a result, he has been demoted to the second and third pairings despite the fact on 11/14 he scored one goal and one assist in a 3-2 win over Sodertalje.

G Frederik NorrenaW-L-TGAASv%SO
2001-2002 TPS (SM-Liiga)14-11-51.98.9322
2001-2002 TPS (Playoffs)2-4-01.64.952NA
2002 Finland (Nat’l Team)2-1-00.86.9601
2002-2002 Frolunda (SEL) 6-4-02.36.9120

Stock: Steady< /font>
Since Last Update: 2-1-0, 3.33GAA, .890%, 0SO
Norrena left after the first period of the Finnish national team’s second Karjala Cup team with chest pains and did not play for roughly two weeks before returning recently to the ice for Vastra Frolunda. In his absence, his former backup Fredrik Lundqvist continued to play well, helping to push the Indians into first place on the SEL table. It remains to be seen whether Norrena can regain the team’s starting position free and clear, or if he will continue seeing only split time in a tandem situation this season.

Note: All statistics as of 11-25-2002.