Lightning hire former Habs executive Julien BriseBois to be assistant GM

Montreal Canadiens fans are going to start developing a complex when it comes to the Tampa Bay Lightning and general manager Steve Yzerman. First it was Yzerman hiring former Hamilton Bulldogs head coach Guy Boucher away to be the new head man of the Lightning and now Yzerman’s new assistant general manager is a guy that Canadiens fans will know pretty well themselves as Erik Erlendsson from Bolts Report tells us.

The Tampa Bay Lightning hired former Montreal Canadiens executive Julien BriseBois as Assistant General Manager today, Executive Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced. BriseBois will report directly to Yzerman and assist him in all aspects of contract preparation and negotiation, salary arbitration and player transactions for the Lightning and the Norfolk Admirals (as that team’s new General Manager), while also managing interpretation of the NHL’s collective bargaining agreement and the salary cap for Tampa Bay.

Obviously Yzerman is doing all he can to fill positions as best he can and he’s picking from some of the best, brightest and youngest minds around. Julien BriseBois is just 33 years-old and Guy Boucher is just 38 himself. Experience is clearly not the issue with Yzerman, just the best and the brightest minds and BriseBois is recognized as one of the best and brightest minds around and a guy who is savvy with numbers. BriseBois will likely fall in line as Yzerman’s capologist.

Another aspect to BriseBois’s resume is that he’s also a lawyer, having worked in sports law. A capologist lawyer savvy with numbers… Yeah, I think he’ll come in handy while negotiating with players worried about a potential work stoppage after the 2011-2012 season.

After years of mismanagement and salting the earth by previous owners Len Barrie and Oren Koules, new owner Jeff Vinik has already provided more support and stability to a franchise that was spiraling out of control fast. It’s crazy to think it was just six years ago the Lightning won the Stanley Cup, but two owners later here we are. Whether Yzerman’s executive youth movement pays off remains to be seen, but there’s hope in western Florida for the first time in a long time.

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    Video: Penguins coach takes issue with late, high Orpik hit on Maatta

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    The Pittsburgh Penguins have spoken out against a late, high hit that Washington Capitals defenseman Brooks Orpik threw on Olli Maatta early in the first period of an eventful Game 2 on Saturday.

    Maatta left and didn’t return. He played only 31 seconds, and the Penguins were reduced to five defensemen for a large portion of the game. Orpik was given a minor penalty on the play, but the league’s Department of Player Safety may see it differently.

    The hit occurred well after Maatta had gotten rid of the puck. He struggled on his way to the dressing room for further evaluation.

    Based on multiple reports, Orpik wasn’t made available to the media following the game, which went to the Penguins as they earned the split on the road.

    But the Penguins have taken issue with the hit.

    “I thought it was a late hit,” said Penguins coach Mike Sullivan, as per CSN Mid-Atlantic. “I thought it was a target to his head. I think it’s the type of hit everyone in hockey is trying to remove from the game.”

    Game on: Penguins even series with rival Capitals

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    The Pittsburgh Penguins will head back home with a split of their second-round series with the rival Washington Capitals.

    Former Capitals forward Eric Fehr came back to burn his hold team, as he scored with under five minutes remaining in regulation to help lift the Penguins over Washington with a 2-1 victory in an eventful Game 2 on Saturday. Evgeni Malkin threw the puck toward the net and Fehr was able to re-direct it by Braden Holtby.

    Oh, this was an eventful game, indeed.

    It started early in the first period with Capitals defenseman Brooks Orpik catching Penguins blue liner Olli Maatta with a late and high hit that warranted — at least for now — only a minor penalty for interference. Maatta, clearly in distress following the hit, didn’t play another shift and saw only 31 seconds of ice time in total, as Pittsburgh was reduced to five defensemen for the remainder of the game.

    It continued in the third period. Kris Letang was furious after getting called for a trip on Justin Williams, and even more ticked off when the Capitals tied the game on the ensuing power play.

    For two periods, the Capitals couldn’t get much going. Only four of their players had registered a shot on goal through 40 minutes, while the Penguins held the edge in that department and held the lead.

    Washington came out with more jump in the third period, testing rookie netminder Matt Murray with 14 shots in the final 20 minutes. But the Penguins got the late goal to break the deadlock.

    Video: Penguins’ Letang was furious after Capitals tie up Game 2 with power play goal

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    Kris Letang watched from the penalty box as the Washington Capitals tied up Game 2 with a power play goal in the third period. The Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman was called for tripping after he appeared to muscle Justin Williams off the puck as he entered the zone.

    Letang let his disagreement with the call be known at the time, and was furious after the Capitals capitalized on a goal from Marcus Johansson.

    The Capitals started the period down a goal and being outshot 28-10 by the Penguins, who need a win to even the series.

    Also, it seems this is worth mentioning:

    Video: Hagelin goes top shelf to give Penguins the lead in Game 2

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    In their quest to even the series, the Pittsburgh Penguins had done a nice job through two periods of suffocating the Washington Capitals, while gaining the lead on a beautiful goal.

    Carl Hagelin took advantage of a vast amount of space that opened up in front of the Washington net, finishing off a nice pass from Nick Bonino, burying his shot just under the cross bar on the glove side of Braden Holtby.

    Through two periods, the Penguins were outshooting Washington 28-10. Only four Capitals players — Alex Ovechkin, T.J. Oshie, Evgeny Kuznetsov and Matt Niskanen — had registered shots on goal.