News hit recently that bought-out ex-Cat Brett McLean had landed a tryout in Tampa Bay's camp got me thinking: is the recent spate of former Florida cast-offs landing right back in the Southeast Division a coincidence? Of course it must only be thus, but the numbers are difficult to ignore. It's one of those fun but utterly meaningless points-of-discussion which the sport of hockey tends to specialize in (see Boyle, Dan).
With the McLean invite, the Lightning have now hit a total of four former Panthers up for service in Tampa Bay over the past eight months: McLean, Cory Murphy, Noah Welch, and Lukas Krajicek (five if Len Barrie's name is thrown in...and he could probably use the income right about now; what's his standing with the Players' Association pension fund again?).
Another (lesser) oddity: Atlanta has been not quite stockpiling but no question opening their eyes to the idea of Florida having given up prematurely on a few young Cats, most notably prospect-for-life Anthony Stewart, but also taking a peek at the aforementioned Welch (who I'm personally pulling for, which has nothing to do with my desire for his signature on a particular puck above my desk to rise in value). Maybe it's not quite an oddity; we're only talking two players, but to ignore the innate rubbernecking which Florida fans will inevitably lavish on Stewart after oh-so-many failed starts would be foolish: we'll always have an interest.
Anyone else in recent history come to mind?