Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tampa Bay Lightning's Evgeny Artyukhin (again) shows promise

The re-education of Evgeny Artyukhin continues.

The 25-year-old Russian has confounded two Lightning administrations since being drafted in the third round in 2001. He has played well in bursts, been frustrating in spells, been scratched, chastised, cajoled and speculated about.

But for three consecutive games, which coincide with the team's win streak, he has not only been what interim coach Rick Tocchet calls — in complimentary terms — a "menace," but an offensive contributor. That makes the 6-foot-4, 254-pound right wing a commodity. Now if only he continues to realize and exploit it.

"I try every game to bring something, actually physical stuff," he said. "Sometimes, it's really hard."

Artyukhin has goals in consecutive games and three this season. But Tocchet has been more impressed with the edge he has displayed — six hits in 8:03 of ice time Friday and three in 13:16 on Saturday, both wins over Florida — and admits there is sometimes frustration in trying to cultivate what he believes can be a great player.

"There's a difference between him being a guy that can make a lot of money in this league and be a valuable player to his team and a guy who's in and out of the lineup," Tocchet said. "If he can somehow figure that out — and we're trying every day with him — he's going to be a hell of a hockey player."

POWER DOWN: The power play continued to falter. A 1-for-6 on Saturday left it 4-for-49 in the past 11 games. It scored just once — by Artyukhin — on three five-on-threes that encompassed 2:47 in the first period.

That failure, combined with what Tocchet saw as a lack of killer instinct, helped the Panthers get back in the game on Saturday. They scored twice within 26 seconds (one on a five-on-three) to tie it at 3.

"It's really, really frustrating we're not scoring on five-on-threes," said Tocchet, whose team has two goals in 12 five-on-threes. "(There have been) four or five games where if we score the goal, we win. We let Florida get back in the game 3-3. We should have stamped them out and gotten the (fourth) goal."

PICK-ME-UP: A busy intersection cleared in front of the Panthers goal with six seconds left in the second Saturday, allowing Vinny Lecavalier to grab a puck out of the air, place it down and past goaltender Tomas Vokoun. Credit Ryan Malone with some of the traffic control as he rushed through the crease to crash into the lone Panther with a chance to make a play. Nice pick.

"It's easier to score if no one is in front of the goal," Malone said smiling.

Tampa Bay Lightning's Evgeny Artyukhin (again) shows promise 12/28/08 [Last modified: Monday, December 29, 2008 11:34am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays let early lead get away again in loss to Angels (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — As pleased as the Rays were to win consecutive series against the contending Red Sox, Indians and Yankees and to get briefly back over .500, there was a lot of talk in the clubhouse before Monday's game against the Angels that it was time to do better.

    Tampa Bay Rays third base coach Charlie Montoyo (25) high fives designated hitter Corey Dickerson (10) as he rounds third on his lead off home run in the first inning of the game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Los Angeles Angels at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Monday, May 22, 2017.
  2. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Monday's Rays-Angels game

    The Heater

    OF/DH Corey Dickerson missed out on a good birthday gift when AL player of the week honors went instead to Detroit's J.D. Martinez. Dickerson hit .385 with five homers, nine RBIs and nine runs; Martinez went .389-4-9-7 and got the nod.

  3. Rays journal: Alex Cobb learning to work with what he has

    Sports

    ST. PETERSBURG

    If this were 2012 or 2013, even 2014, RHP Alex Cobb would have problems. He would find himself working with only two of his three pitches, with the missing pitch being his trusty changeup.

    Alex Cobb, working mainly with his fastball and curveball, is 3-1 with a 2.78 ERA over his past five starts. The Rays right-hander tries to continue his strong stretch tonight against the Angels.
  4. Rays vs. Angels, 7:10 p.m. Tuesday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Angels

    7:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    PORT CHARLOTTE, FL - FEBRUARY 18:  Alex Cobb #53 of the Tampa Bay Rays poses for a portrait during the Tampa Bay Rays photo day on February 18, 2017 at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte, Floida.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
  5. Fennelly: This season's Chris Archer is a pleasure to watch

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG

    At this time last season, through 10 starts, Rays pitcher Chris Archer was 3-5 on his way to 9-19.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Chris Archer (22) throwing in the first inning of the game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the New York Yankees at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, May 21, 2017.