Bolts Update

tampa bay lightning trade rumors

It’s all part of the plan. Tampa Bay Lightning GM, Steve Yzerman, has been active since the Los Angeles Kings won the Stanley Cup. He did what many didn’t expect; he resigned Ryan Callahan. He bought out Ryan Malone, one of the two biggest problems on the ice. They drafted a very good offensive defenseman in Anthony DeAngelo. Then, on Sunday night, they kept hockey analysts up late with a bevy of trade activity. Today, Yzerman looks to do more.

The Ryan Callahan signing is big. When we acquired him for a couple first round picks, and Benedict Arno… err… Marty St. Louis, anybody who watched him play knew Callahan just seemed to fit. He brings a lot of grit, heart, and a presence in front of the net. When it became official, and the ink was dry, Lightning fans were very happy to hear the Callahan wanted to make Tampa Bay his home, at least for the next 6 years.

Ryan Malone was good. Was, is the key word. I’ve been rooting for his departure for about 3 years now, and finally that time has come. Yzerman did the smart thing and bought out Ryan Malone. This is good for the team, and good for him. This allows him to focus on his personal issues that he needs to get sorted out. Thanks for your services Ryan. Get healthy.

The day before the draft they sent a 2nd round pick to Vancouver for a proven top four defenseman in Jason Garrison. Also in that deal we acquired a 7th round pick (used to move up) and Jeff Costello.

The draft is not something I worry about anymore with the Tampa Bay Lightning. I love the draft, and I have full trust in Al Murray and his scouting department. They seem to find the best talent they can. Several times during this year’s draft, the Lightning moved up to acquire a particular player. The top three players I’d keep my eye on that were drafted by Tampa are Anthony DeAngelo, Brayden Point, and Cameron Darcy. All three of these young men have a lot of potential.

Sunday night was fun, to say the least. First Yzerman ridded the Lightning of the second biggest problem on the ice, Teddy Purcell, with a trade to Edmonton for Sam Gagner. As I’m thinking about the potential Gagner could have with the Lightning, he gets flipped to Arizona, along with B.J. Crombeen for a sixth round pick. It became clear then that this move was to shed salary. However, not long after that, Nate Thompson, who has been a fan favorite, was shipped off to Anaheim for a couple of late round draft picks. I saw nothing wrong with this move either. Honestly, Thompson had a horrible year last season. He got an “A” on his jersey, but you never noticed when he was on the ice. None of his play stood out. This made him expendable, and Yzerman unloaded. Purcell though, I can’t tell you how glad I am to see him go. If he shot more, I may be a bit more upset, but, I’ve been after his removal for a couple of seasons now too. I got my wish.

Other odds and ends:

J.T. Brown resigned with the Lightning. Good move there.

The Lightning has tendered qualifying offers to Brett Connolly, Dmitry Korobov, Cody Kunyk, Richard Panik, Philippe Paradis, and Andrej Sustr.

The Bolts did not tender Keith Aulie or Anders Lindback.

What we can expect today:

The hunt is on for a backup goalie. I’ve also heard they are looking for another defenseman, and probably a winger or two to fill out the roster. Free agency starts at noon. It’s going to be a crazy day.

Thanks for reading.

Daniel Ferguson

I was born in Tampa, Florida and have been here my whole life. I have loved every minute (through thick and thin) that I have been able to watch the Tampa Bay Lightning play. I got hooked in 1992 at my first game (when I was just a young lad) and have followed the Bolts 24/7 ever since.

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