The Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Atlanta Thrashers, Montreal Canadiens and Philadelphia Flyers to start their season at 3-1. The loss came against the Florida Panthers, who spanked the Lightning, 6-0.
The Lightning must strengthen their defense. Tampa Bay’s record may stand at 3-1, but they have given up 14 goals in four games. Coach Guy Boucher’s previous team, the Bulldogs of the American Hockey League, were known to be stingy about giving up goals. That kind of defense needs to return to the St. Pete Times Forum.
On the other hand, the Lightning beat the Flyers in Philadelphia, 3-2. The Lightning had lost to the Flyers in five previous outings and not beaten them since January 2009.
Other than the lopsided loss to the Panthers, the Lightning have been getting the puck in the goal. Steven Stamkos started the season making goalies suffer with four goals in the first three games. Against the Canadiens, Ryan Malone scored the game-winning goal with 51 seconds left in overtime, giving coach Boucher a win for his Montreal homecoming.
The Bolts continue to cater to the fans with ticket sales and pregame entertainment. On the 18th, they play their second home game against the Dallas Stars. The first 2,500 fans receive a special Steven Stamkos trading card. Tickets start at $15.00 for Hockey Fights Cancer Night. The National Hockey League plans to donate $10,000 to local cancer organizations for the event.
Stamkos photo credit: Getty Images/Bruce Bennett
Malone photo credit: Getty Images/Roger WolowiczPowered by Sidelines