Lightning’s Palat named January’s rookie of the month


After scoring 16 points in 15 games, Tampa Bay forward Ondrej Palat has been named the NHL’s rookie of the month for January.

Palat edged out fellow Bolts rookie Tyler Johnson, who finished with 14 points in 15 games.

The 22-year-old Palat, the youngest player named to the Czech Olympic team, had a tremendous January, opening with a five-game point streak that saw him set a franchise record for longest scoring streak by a rookie (eight games). Just for good measure, Palat finished off the month with a five-game point streak as well.

Palat wasn’t without strong competition for the award, though. Johnson had a tremendous month, as did Colorado’s Nathan MacKinnon (seven goals, 14 points). A pair of goalies — Minnesota’s Darcy Kuemper and Anaheim’s Frederik Andersen — also played extremely well.

With the win, Palat joins Tomas Hertl (October), Marek Mazanec (November) and Martin Jones/Antti Raanta (December co-winners) as this season’s rookie of the month winners.

Panthers’ Crouse is going back to junior

2015 NHL Draft - Round One
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Lawson Crouse is going back to junior. The big 18-year-old winger confirmed it today on Twitter.

Crouse was drafted 11th overall in June by the Florida Panthers. Despite the club’s belief that Crouse could make “an immediate impact” on the roster, he finished the preseason with just two shots and one assist in three games.

Crouse will return to the OHL’s Kingston Frontenacs, with whom he’ll look to improve on his modest point totals from last season.

“I don’t think there’s any pressure on the kid,” coach Gerard Gallant said last week. “If he doesn’t make the team this year he goes back to junior … and will have a lot of success.”

Yes! Jagr’s bringing back the mullet

Ice Hockey - Day 6 - Czech Republic v Slovakia

The greatest mullet in sports history is making a comeback.

According to the Miami Herald’s George Richards, Jaromir Jagr says he’s bringing back the party in the back.

“I have to,” Jagr, 43, said.

Jagr’s teammate with the Florida Panthers, goalie Roberto Luongo, appears to have been the lead lobbyist in all this.

Anyway, this is fantastic.