Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Lightning This and That

Just some stuff before the season starts:
  • The Lightning signed free agent LW Mitch Fritz to a 1 year contract. He's a giant who stands at 6'8", and was undrafted will be report directly to the Admirals. The former Kelowna Rocket made his NHL debut with the Islanders last season.
  • Mike Lundin and Matt Lashoff cleared waivers and were both assigned to the Admirals. Lashoff got a verbal lashing from Tocchet today, with Tocchet saying "I don't think he came into camp vying for a job,". Ouch. But Cristodero points out that if they get called up, because they only make $105, 000 each, they don't have to clear re-entry waivers.
  • The Lightning keep increasing the Swedish love by teaming up with IKEA. And clearly, the next logical step, since we also have Ohlund and Hedman, would be to have a Swedish Night! No word yet if pickled herring or swedish pancakes with lingonberry syrup will be served though.
And from the man who loves press conferences:
Burke says that the Canucks shopped Burrows, Bieksa and their 1st round draft pick for Hedman at the draft. Gillis denies this. Since I love both teams, I could really go either way on my opinion if it did happen, but I am happy that it didn't.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Things should start to pick up around here

Sorry for all the quietness folks, during the summer I had not found things that I felt like writing about, but that should change soon. I do know that I am getting excited for the first Lightning game of the season on Saturday. Nice to see the Lightning take the last pre-season game 5-1 over the Thrashers, but on Saturday we will see if the changes during the summer actually made the team better.

First home game is next Thursday October 8th.

Love how Ohlie always hits that "deer in headlights" mark so well.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Oren Koules to take lead in ownership race

The St. Petersburg Times is reporting that Oren Koules, with real estate investor Jeff Greene is making a push to buy out Len Barrie. Bill Daly confirms that Jeff Greene has filed a league ownership application with the NHL. Green says that he has "the funds available to do this transaction".

Len Barrie has apparently been in talks with a St. Louis real estate developer named Anthony Sansone, but Sansone has not yet filed an ownership application.

Elliotte Friedman and Erik Erlendsson are both reporting that Len Barrie's window to buy out Koules has now closed. The best line out of Erlendsson's article is that "Apparently, nobody informed Barrie.", which actually seems very fitting with the Tampa Bay management saga. Barrie apparently thought he had until Wednesday to buy out Koules.

When informed later Monday of the league's confirmation he was out of the picture, Barrie responded in a text message to The Tampa Tribune: "We'll see. I guess I would be happy to get my $40 million."

Awesome. He sounds unmoved by the fact that he missed the deadline. But I guess I would be happy to get back my $40 million too if I thought I had lost it all. $40 million is better than no million. Maybe Barrie planned it this way, sounding like he was interested in buying out Koules long enough to get some other investor interested just so he can re-coup his money to get out of this money sucking black hole investment. If he did, genius.

Lighting on the way to Everett

According the the Lighting twitter, the boys are on the bus headed to the airport to catch a flight to Seattle. The boys will be so close (a 3 hour drive) yet so far away (when you don't own a car) from me.

I am using this post really to complain about the cost to rent a car and the length of the boarder waits to that made me decide against going to the game tomorrow. If the game was a regular season game, I would be all over taking a day off of work to catch the game, but alas I have bills to pay.
And with 4 games in a row, I couldn't bet on seeing the players I wanted to pay to go see, actually play.

So the Lightning have lost 3-1 to Ottawa tonight, their 1st of the 4 games in 4 nights that they have scheduled. As my friend on my couch points out, contrary to the Lightning website, losing 3-1 is not being edged out of a win, rather, you could say that losing 3-1 is getting beaten by the other team.

For an interesting read, though not really Lightning related, on the Heatley trade check out former Lightning GM, Jay Feaster's article in THN.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Pre-season starts tommorow...

Hockey is so close I can almost feel it.

The first pre-season game is tomorrow against Dallas at 8:30ET. There are no big names playing tomorrow night, but Hedman will make his debut. The
roster is posted up on Lightning Strikes. If you want to listen to the game on the radio, click here for the info.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Lecavalier Q&A & Tokarski Feature

Check out Vinny's Q&A with Damian Cristodero for the St. Petersburg Times. He drops a lot of 'I'm happy' about not being traded and 'everything is good' answers about his health.

The Lightning website has a good piece about former Spokane Chief Dustin Tokarski . He was one of Wrap's beloved Chiefs that will be at his first NHL training camp this year. Oh, and he's adorable.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Len Barrie on the outs?

The Globe and Mail today has an article about more trouble with Len Barrie's investments and according to a source, he was unable to put together a deal to buy out Oren Koules for ownership of the Lightning.

A financial accusation of misuse of funds was made by a former auditor of Bear Mountain Resorts. It says that Barrie used some company money to buy the Lightning, though Barrie denied it and said the money was repaid to Bear Mountain.

Also interesting:
"However, sources close to the executive committee and the auditor’s report tell a different story. One source with knowledge of the committee’s deliberations said Mr. Barrie may soon be replaced as CEO of Bear Mountain by an interim leader from a Toronto company that specializes in corporate rescues.

Mr. Barrie at first denied he was being replaced as soon as today but then said “a couple of different possibilities” were being discussed"

Barrie has until the end of September to put together a package to buy out Koules for ownership of the Lightning before Koules will a get a chance to buy out Barrie.

I think we are going to see the end of Len Barrie the Tampa Bay Lightning owner very soon, which is too bad, because I kinda like the idea of two guys playing armchair GM's for real. It didn't really work out for the team's success, but it was neat to see an ownership group who was touted as being passionate about hockey. Though incidents like this makes me question where the NHL was when they reviewed their application as owners. Another incident of failed ownership reflects badly on the NHL because most of us and news media haven't forgotten about 'Boots' Del Biaggio yet.

It's official, Tanguay is a Bolt

The Lightning have on their webpage the official announcement of the signing today.

Since there's been so much speculation already it doesn't seem that big of news, but don't get me wrong, I'm really pleased with the signing. Tanguay is pretty much a point a game player, and the contract is a steal, providing that he doesn't spend half the season injured.