I personally don't see it. Connolly is almost guaranteed to go back to juniors. It just makes too much sense. Ashton has a chance but a lot of people would have to have bad training camps for that to happen and ashton would have to dominate. I think give ashton a year in the minors and then he will be ready next year for sure. Connolly mihgt need a year of juniors and then a year in the minors. It never hurts to be patient.
If no players currently slated for the roster show they can fill in on the second line aside from our current top-6 I see most likely Ashton making the squad as a 2nd/3rd line tweener with a decent dose of PK time(or PP since it'll ease up Malone's duties). Connolly would have to blow everyone away as I think the new regime would rather let prospects grow if they can be sent back to the minors.
Short answer: No, I don't think either Ashton nor Connolly make the team this year.
Long answer: I don't think its a stretch that both are capable of consistently outperforming other players in similar roles ahead of them on an imaginable Lightning depth chart. I do think there are too many other players competing for those spots whose contract or developmental status justifies their higher position on said depth chart. It will require a heroic training camp, followed by an epic preseason, flowing with measurable chemistry with our established parts for Connolly or Ashton to leapfrog everybody else.
Its exciting to contemplate how adding one of them into the mix reshapes the Lightning roster. If its upon the merits of being too good now to be sent back down, our top 9 depth and dominance really stands to gain.
All signs point to Yzerman being extra patient on the developmental front. Barring overachievement, neither makes the team.