Saturday, June 25, 2016

Lightning's NHL draft strategy leaked on Twitter by Sabres fan

A sneaky Buffalo Sabres fan got his/her hands on a piece of Tampa Bay’s draft playbook Thursday afternoon and the slick Twitter user decided to put images of the Lightning’s purloined trade strategy online.

The piece of computer paper, titled “Trade Ideas - 2016”, lists potential Lightning trading partners based on draft picks.

The user said that his friend found the paper in a hotel lobby. The conversation between the two was later obtained by @TheDailyHockey twitter account and posted again.

No players are listed on the posts — only picks. But it listed past trades involving the franchise’s draft picks, and teams’ tendencies when it comes to trading up and down in the draft.

The original tweet was taken down but not before a screen-shot of it was posted by @kikkerlaika, who sent it to her almost-2,000 followers and turned the incident into a sort of Draftgate.

“We’d like to ask you to please take the tweets down and ask that your friend not share it either,” the Lightning pleaded via Twitter after the images were posted.

The leaker had a snarky suggestion in his reply.

“Sure as long as (Lightning star Steven) Stamkos signs with the Sabres.”

Stamkos is expected to become one of the most coveted free agents in league when he hits the market on July 1. Buffalo is one of the front-runners to land the former 60-goal scorer and have the salary cap to do it.

Whether or not the Lightning ended up sticking to their script is unknown but the team did take Brett Howden, a center out of Manitoba, with the 27th pick.

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