27-Year-Old Right Wing – Tampa Bay Lightning
Michael Blunden Contract Information:
Signed a one-year, two-way deal with the Lightning in July 2014. Contract is worth $600,000 at the NHL level.
The Lightning reassigned Blunden to AHL Syracuse on Monday, Erik Erlendsson of the Tampa Tribune reports.
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Michael Blunden: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
There was no outlook written for Michael Blunden.
Blunden continued his split-duty career in the Montreal organization, skating for both the parent club and the AHL affiliate in Hamilton for the second straight season. He showed some offense for the Bulldogs, registering 22 points (10 goals, 12 assists) in 54 games, his highest point output in any season since 2007 when he toiled for the Blackhawks organization. Despite the output, Blunden is not considered an offensive threat from the forward position. The Habs signed him to a one-year deal in the offseason and he'll reprise his role as organizational depth and fourth-line grinder if called by the parent club.
Blunden, who was re-signed to a one-year, two-way contract this past summer, will be roster fringe for the Canadiens, playing some on the fourth line or being a healthy scratch. His greatest asset is his size and credit him for knowing what to do with it. He had four points, 104 hits and 27 penalty minutes in 39 games with the Habs. He's part of the crew Montreal signed during the offseason, intending to make them a tougher opponent, along with Brandon Prust and Ryan White; the Canadiens have some tough hombres to battle the more physical teams in the NHL.
Blunden has a smattering of NHL experience (51 with Chicago and Columbus), which might come in handy when the Canadiens are filling out the final forward spots on the roster. He's a big guy who uses it well, crashing boards and in the corners. Blunden is not a gifted scorer, but is willing to get to the net and play in the rough areas.
If the fourth liner sticks in the NHL all season, he could collect triple-digit PIMs, but he's got no other fantasy upside.
Physical depth forward could get a shot at a fourth line role with the Blue Jackets.
Blunden has been working hard to overcome his injury-prone past. He took a large step forward last year by playing in a career high 74 games for the Rockford Icehogs, second most on the team. Blunden needs some more seasoning to hone his scoring ability. Expect him to spend a lot of time with the Icehogs during the 2008-09 season.
Blunden will start the season at Rockford of the AHL. Was a slight disappointment in training camp this season and showed that he needs more seasoning. Is lumped in with a bunch of prospects in the Hawks organization. Will need to break out of that pack.
The 19-year-old who will turn 20 in December should be playing at Norfolk for the full season to improve on his agility. Playing in 11 games for the Admirals in 2005-06, Blunden recorded a goal and five assists. The 6-foot-3, 203 pound right winger was a member of Team Canada in the 2006 World Junior Championships.