Koekkoek sent to Syracuse so he can finally play
D Slater Koekkoek was reassigned to AHL Syracuse on Wednesday for the purpose of getting him playing time after being a healthy scratch in the Lightning’s first three games.
“Yes, there’s no question,” coach Jon Cooper said. “Can’t have a young guy sitting up there in the stands waiting for his chance when he has opportunities to play games, so this should never be taking as a demotion because it’s not. It’s a free move to get somebody games. That’s what we want.”
Syracuse plays Friday at home against Utica and Saturday at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. The Lightning begins a six-game road trip through the Northeast on Saturday night at Ottawa. That means Koekkoek will not be far from the team should the Lightning want him back.
To take Koekkoek’s spot on the roster, the Lightning recalled D Matt Taormina from Syracuse. Taormina played in 12 games with the Lightning over the past four seasons. He has played in 59 career NHL games.
“It was kind of a shock, but just going to come up and if they need me to go, I’ll be ready to play whatever they want me to play,” Taormina aid. “I’ve been here a while now so I know what to expect.”
In other news, Ben Bishop will be in goal tonight when the Lightning (3-0) finish this four-game homestand … Tonight is the 20th anniversary of the Lightning’s first game at what is now Amalie Arena.