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Written by Dani Toth | 11 April 2010

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Well that was fun, non? Stamkos and Crosby ending up tying for the Rocket Richard Trophy with 51 goals each.

The bright side of today's win over the Panthers was the empty net goal that Stamkos got for his 51st goal of the season. Going into today's game Stamkos already knew that Ovechkin had not scored against the Bruins. This allowed Stamkos to go up head to head against Crosby who sat 1 goal back at 49. Crosby scored two goals to bring up his total to 51, putting some pressure on the young Stamkos. And in the 3rd period, he was able to match Crosby with an empty net goal. With 51 goals each, that means they'll share the Rocket Richard Trophy and Ovechkin comes in 2nd. That's all sorts of awesome.

Quote from Stamkos via Lightning Strikes

"Pretty surreal to do it in my second year in the league and share it with a player like Crosby is pretty special," Stamkos said. "And to win it without a guy named Ovechkin in the  mix is pretty special too. He's such a dominant scorer."

And big kudos to Crosby for upping his level of game to go from being a playmaker to being a goal scorer. For anyone who says that there should be a tie breaker, just forget it. Maybe they can implement some rule in the future, but if you are allowed to get empty net goals, then they should be counted. It went in the net and it counted as a goal, non?

With the win today the Lightning dropped in the Draft lottery order down to 25th, which takes them out of the lotto for 1st draft pick. Nevertheless a top 10 draft pick will help the team in the future, and having Stamkos and Hedman in your future already, makes the future look promising.

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Written by Dani Toth | 11 April 2010

Lots to catch up on at The Hockey Bay blog, so let's get a quick recap of what has happened, and after today's game I'll get some season review thoughts in.

Lightning against the Senators

OMG the Lightning won! After blowing 3-0 lead, the Lightning were able to win the the shootout which really doesn't help our lottery pick standing at this time of the year.

Highlight of the night goes to the Mike Smith v. Chris Neil fight:

Goalie fights are awesomesauce. It's too bad Smitty can't attack pucks the way he attacks Chris Neil

Lightning against the Panthers (Saturday)

In the first of the home at home games between the two clubs where the point of the games is to end up with no points, the Lightning wins the game 4-3.

The only story of the night was Stamkos getting his 49th and (!) 50th goal!

Here's #50:

Lightning against the Panthers (Sunday)

So todays game is hte last game of the season, Stamkos is tied with Ovechkin in the race for the Rocket Richard trophy with Crosby right behind at 49. By the time the puck drops tonight, Stamkos will know how many Ovechkin has gotten and will be up against Crosby as both the TBL and Pittsburgh game starts at the same time. Nothing to play for tonight except Stamkos getting goals...Woo Stamkos!

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Written by Dani Toth | 08 April 2010

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Last time we played each other I asked if we played any other team besides the Ottawa Senators, now after not seeing them for 5 months I can't remember what it's like to play them. Last time we played the team, games mattered, now not so much.

Enemy Blog: Check out
Five for Smiting and the 6th Sens for your Ottawa perspective. And for something Senator related, my good friend Ryan Classic was asked to gave his thoughts for Ottawa's "most frustrating player" for NBC's PHT, he also writes over at SBN's Silver Seven.

Stamkos is looking for his 48th goal of the year tonight and only has Crosby and Ovechkin ahead of him with 48 goals each currently. This is the second to last game of our home games, and continues the 'fan appreciation' week.

Paul Ranger has been spotted at the St. Pete Times Forum not once but twice this week! This is some curious news since we haven't seen him since October 23rd when he took a leave of absence from the team. I wrote a post about it over at Raw Charge, head over there to read it.

Line-up Notes:


Game time: 7:30pm on SUN (HD)
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Written by Dani Toth | 06 April 2010

Unless they were trying to make me sink even lower by padding other people in my fantasy pool's stats (I'm looking at you Eric Staal), this game tonight was just another look of the Lightning that we have become all too familiar with. Oh this game was part of fan appreciation week? You don't say...

On a positive note, Stamkos got his 47 goal of the season:

Can he get 3 more in the next three games?

I missed writing about this yesterday as it was making its rounds on twitter, but the Lightning have signed their 2007 draft pick, LW Johan Harju to a one year contract.

And TSN is reporting that both Steven Stamkos and Steve Downie could play for Team Canada in the World Championships in Germany. Martin St. Louis has declined the invitation to play for Canada and no word about Lecavalier, but since he girlfriend is about to have a baby, maybe he'll bow out too? Or would he not be invited?

Next game on Thursday against the Senators. For your enemy blog ramblings, check out Five for Smiting and the 6th Sens

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Written by Dani Toth | 05 April 2010

Nike Bauer checks out Stamkos' house mtv cribs style. Enjoy your Easter Monday!

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Written by Dani Toth | 04 April 2010

We have a bit of weekend break before our next game which is at home on Tuesday. Here are a few links to get you by through the weekend

Stamkos Could Have Been a Ranger?
In the New York Post today, Larry Brooks reports that a deal was done by Glen Sather and Len Barrie to trade Stamkos to the Rangers. They had started talking at the opening of the season when the two teams faced off against each other in Prague and by November when they played again the talks had become serious

Barrie was asking to choose two or three from a wish list that featured Michael Del Zotto, Evgeny Grachev, Ryan Callahan, Brandon Dubinsky and Dan Girardi.

"How close did we come?" Sather asked rhetorically, repeating the question we posed to him as the Rangers practiced in Tampa on Thursday. "We shook hands on it, that's how close.

"I'd been on it since Europe. I had an agreement with Len Barrie. I asked him if he had the authority to make the trade, and he assured me that he did, because he was an owner.

"But the next day, I found out that he didn't. He went to run the deal by [GM] Brian Lawton, who wanted no part of it. As I understood it, the way it was told to me, Barrie was still going to make the deal, but then he was told that he couldn't unless he got the approval of [co-owner] Oren Koules.

"Koules shot it down," said Sather. "That was the end of it."

Sad to say that I am not the least bit surprised that Stamkos was being shopped by Barrie or the fact that Barrie never consulted his GM that he employs or his co-owner. Thank god it did not happen.

h/t to Lightning Shout for the link

Jim Johnson Returned to AHL
Are they just making up for mistakes made previously? Um, yes. He was an assistant coach that never actually hit the ice. Besides the fact that he was promoted in a way that ruffled feathers, Michael Russo tweeted yesterday that Tocchet wouldn't "allow" Johnson on the ice or take any of his input. So basically, they are acting like children, more on it here.

My Thoughts on NBC's Pro Hockey Talk
Not Lightning related, but I was asked by NBC's Pro Hockey Talk to give my thoughts about the most frustrating player on the Vancouver Canucks. My pick was Pavol Demitra, so go visit Pro Hockey Talk to read my reasoning and check out their new site if you haven't already, be warned they post often (click on the first link to go directly to my post) but don't worry their wit is never compromised.
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Written by Dani Toth | 02 April 2010

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F-U-C-K-I-N-G-T-E-R-R-I-B-L-E

Maybe we were just helping out the playoff hopes of the Rangers...no, no, that's crazy talk, they really were just terrible. Four goals in the first period? FOUR? How do we go from shutting out the Pens to letting in four goals in the first period? Oh wait, Mike Smith was in net.

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If you sat through the whole thing, well I commend you, since I bailed after the 1st. I did however, even with all my distaste for him, did gasp when they wheeled out the stretcher for Downie. Don't wory he did skate off on his own. If you want to read more on this game, you can check out my enemy blog buddy Scotty Hockey who I'm sure will have his thoughts up tomorrow, you know if you like self inflicted pain or the like.

John at Raw Charge has started "Seen Cinquenta?" for the only thing positive thing left that the Lightning have going for them. He's at 46 with four games left for those keeping score at home

Next game on Tuesday against the Hurricanes

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