Video: Tyler Johnson shaken up by Dave Bolland hit

The Tampa Bay Lightning already have their challenges, but what if Tyler Johnson misses some time?

That’s the troubling thought on Saturday night, as he appeared to be quite shaken up by a Dave Bolland hit, which you can watch in the video above.

There’s no update yet regarding whether he’ll miss the rest of tonight’s Lightning – Florida Panthers game, yet that seems like a reasonable bet.

The Panthers may have lost a noteworthy player of their own, as Dmitry Kulikov is done for the evening thanks to a lower-body injury.

Update: Good news, at least for the moment?

After 21-game absence, Bolland (groin) back for Panthers

Ottawa Senators v Florida Panthers
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Florida will get one of its biggest free agent acquisitions back in the lineup tonight, as Dave Bolland will play for the first time since Oct. 17 when the Panthers take on the Blues.

Bolland, who’s missed the last 21 games with a groin strain, came to Florida this summer amid significant fanfare and signed a five-year, $27.5 million pact that made him the club’s highest-paid forward at $5.5 million per season.

The returns thus far, however, haven’t been great — Bolland’s only played in four games this season and has yet to record a point in a Panthers uniform. Florida has done remarkably well in his absence, however, going 10-5-6 and heading into tonight’s action just two points back of Toronto and Boston for fourth in the Atlantic Division.

Panthers’ Bolland to have jersey retired by junior team

Dave Bolland
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Florida Panthers’ center Dave Bolland will have his jersey retired by the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League.

According to The London Free Press, Bolland, who spent 254 regular season games with the Knights will have his No. 91 raised to the rafters of the Budweiser Gardens on Oct. 15.

“It does mean a lot, being up there with (Rick) Nash, (Corey) Perry, Darryl Sittler and all those guys who have come through this organization,” Bolland said. “I thank the Hunters for doing that and for putting me up there. It’s a big honour and it’ll be a fun night.

“I don’t know if I’ll shed a tear, but the way my speeches go, it might be a quick one.”

In addition to Nash, Perry and Sittler, London has retired the numbers of Rob Ramage (5), Dino Ciccarelli (8), Brendan Shanahan (19) and Brad Marsh (22).

In four seasons with the Knights, Bolland scored 135 goals and 299 points. He won the team’s most improved player award for his 37 goals and 67 points during the 2003-04 season in London.

The 2004 second-round pick of the Chicago Blackhawks helped the Knights capture the 2005 Memorial Cup.

Bolland joined the Panthers this summer after signing a new five-year, $27.5 million contract on July 1.

In 355 career NHL games with the Blackhawks and Maple Leafs the two-time Stanley Cup champion has 78 goals and 180 points.

Related: Tavares to have number retired by junior team

Another reunion: Florida inks Bolland — five years, $27.5M

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Stop us if you’ve heard this one before, but Dale Tallon has acquired another ex-Chicago Blackhawk.

This time, it’s center Dave Bolland — the former ‘Hawk and Maple Leaf has agreed to a five-year, $27.5 million deal with the Florida Panthers.

“Me and Dale go back a while,” Bolland told TSN, adding that Tallon “brought that Stanley Cup team to Chicago” before saying he feels that Tallon can do the same thing in Florida.

“I’m going to come in there and help some of these young guys out,” Bolland said, noting that the Panthers have Roberto Luongo in goal as well as some “great young centerman.”

One of the most talked-about free agents on the market, Bolland negotiated long and hard on an extension with Toronto before finally deciding to join his ex-GM in Florida. The pair spent several years together with the ‘Hawks, before Tallon was relieved of his duties and Bolland was shipped to the Leafs in a cap-relief move last summer.

Other ex-‘Hawks brought aboard by Tallon in Florida include Brian Campbell, Tomas Kopecky, Jimmy Hayes, Brandon Pirri and Dylan Olsen.

Earlier today, the Panthers made another big splash in free agency by agreeing to terms with LW Jussi Jokinen on a four-year, $16 million deal.

 

Report: Bolland hasn’t ruled out return to Leafs

Carolina Hurricanes v Toronto Maple Leafs
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It’s coming down to it now. The Toronto Maple Leafs could keep Dave Bolland tomorrow when the NHL free agency period officially kicks off, or they could lose him.

Although there doesn’t seem to be a clear indication as to what could happen with the veteran center at this point. That was echoed somewhat by Leafs general manager Dave Nonis over the weekend in Philadelphia.

The two sides have been going back and forth in recent weeks, but one of the last updates there was stated the two sides were far apart in their negotiations.

Bolland, 28, is headed for unrestricted free agency.

The Leafs, it appears, will also officially part ways with left winger Nikolai Kulemin, who is also about to become an unrestricted free agent and wasn’t very happy with his role with the Leafs the past season.

While those two players could leave – one of them, it seems, is assured to go on the market – the Leafs have reportedly been talking to another pending UFA in Tanner Glass.