With the Lightning off for a couple of days, I have time to sit back and enjoy some other hockey games. That being said, there’s always chatter and things going on in the Lightning world so I do my best to keep my readers posted. Here are some news and notes on the Lightning to begin December.
- Guy Boucher is really trying to push speed. An article posted today in the St. Pete Times quoted Boucher on how speed was the most effective way for him to coach the team successfully. I can’t disagree. Look at this season as a whole. When the Lightning come out flying and use their speed to create offense they win games. By having a strong offense, the team doesn’t have to rely so much on the blueline or Roloson.
- The more I think about Victor Hedman’s new contract, the more I like it. Despite not having the offensive game yet, he does possess a lot of attributes that come with a top D-man in this league. Here’s what Boucher had to say on the kid; clearly he’s pretty impressed. “He's a horse. He's a Chara-type player that's going to bring you some offense, but he brings you a lot more things. The focus of his game can't be run-and-gun and carry the puck on the blue line … that's not him.” That pretty mcuh sums it up. Hedman is the kind of guy that will just float under the radar and do a great job. The Chara comparison is a pretty bold one to make. Right now, I’d liken him more to another star D-man who doesn’t get as much credit as he deserves, Ryan Suter of Nashville.
- I read an interesting article on the Lightning and more specifically Mr. Jeff Vinik. The culture around this team has really changed since he took over and it’s great to see. Every season ticket holder is given a jersey, each jersey has a microchip that, when scanned, gives the wearer discounts and the Forum looks great. Props to Mr. Vinik and the culture he’s creating in a once relatively unknown hockey market.
- The guys over at NHL.com did a fantasy re-draft over the summer that was released today. It’s actually pretty funny when you think about some guys wearing jerseys other than their current ones. For example, think about Zdeno Chara in a Canucks’ uniform….doubt that will be happening soon. Plus, I’m sure guys like Ryan Kesler and Maxim Lapierre would love to see him after last spring. With that said, I thought I’d highlight some of the key guys on the “Lightning Roster” created by Dan Rosen. The draft order was the same as this past draft so Lighting were 26th. Yet, they still managed to grab Henrik Sedin (he was available at 26th….?) and Nicklas Lidstrom. That’s a pretty solid core if you ask me. Jordan Staal, Paul Martin and Brian Gionta round out the bigger names on the team. Funnily enough, Dwayne Roloson is still the number one goalie…YIKES!
Things are really starting to get interesting this season with all the coaching movement and player rumors. It’s an exciting time to be writing here at HockeyBuzz and I look forward to the month ahead. Enjoy your Thursday and let’s beat the Rangers on Saturday.
Thanks for reading.
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