Sunday, February 18, 2018
  • Lightning Strikes
  • Joe Smith

Lightning find another goal scorer

Weston Hermann found himself alone on front of the goal, and Steven Stamkos did what he’s been doing lately when he spots a teammate in front of the net: he passed the puck.

And Hermann shot and scored.

“It was unbelievable,” Hermann, 11, said. “It was really fun. Hoping to play with him when I get older. Stamkos, he has a seven-year contract. If he signs another contract I can still play with him.”

Hermann, a self-described “big Lightning fan,” was a guest of the team during Saturday’s morning skate as part of the Lightning’s Hockey Fights Cancer program. He dressed and joined the players, leading the Lightning at center ice during the stretch.

“I was really nervous,” Hermann said. “(Coach Jon Cooper) just told me to go in the circle, lead the stretch. I was like, ‘I don’t know what to do.’ I don’t know what stretches they do.”

The players tapped the ice with their sticks to welcome their new teammate. Hermann, who plays left wing for a youth team in Ellenton, then took turns with Stamkos and Yanni Gourde during two-on-none drills against goalie Peter Budaj. He later worked on his faceoff technique with Brayden Point.

Hermann scored off a feed from Gourde, slipping the puck between Budaj’s pads, then slammed one home after being setup by Stamkos. He said afterwards that he had asked Budaj not to take it easy on him. That might have been the case on Hermann’s first goal, but Stamkos teed it up perfectly for Hermann on the second.

“He’s actually really good. He’s a great player,” Gourde said. “The one time he was going with Stammer, they looked pretty good together.”

Hermann, who lives in Parrish, is headed to Philadelphia in early November for a second surgery to remove a cancerous tumor in his brain. He recently completed 16 rounds of chemotherapy.

Hermann met Cooper in September at Cooper’s annual Coop’s catch for Kids charity fishing outing, which raised $150,000 for pediatric cancer.

Hermann brought his practice jersey Saturday, because he wanted to fit in with the Lightning players, who wore their practice jerseys. The team, though, provided him with his own Lightning game jersey and gave him a spot in the dressing room next to Andrej Sustr.

His mom, Marcie, said Saturday’s workout with the Lightning, was a welcomed diversion for Weston.

“Everything is on the ice and you leave everything behind, so when you’re out there, you don’t think about how you have to have surgery next week, because you’re out on the ice doing what you love to do best,” she said. “What hockey has meant to him this whole time, he could play and then go be sick in the parking lot, it didn’t matter, because you’re playing. So, it just means being distracted, to just do what you love to do. When you’re out there you don’t think about anything else. He would love to do this someday. It’s a dream.”

Gourde said he enjoyed sharing the shooting drill with Hermann.

“It’s really great to have this kid around and skating with us,” Gourde said. “Obviously, he’s going through a rough time. It’s really fun to be able to have him out there with us and feed off his courage, cause he’s a great kid. He’s got a lot of courage. I respect that a lot.”

Comments
Devils’ Wood gets 2 games for boarding Namestnikov

Devils’ Wood gets 2 games for boarding Namestnikov

Devils forward Miles Wood was suspended two games without pay for his boarding penalty Saturday night against Lightning forward Vladislav Namestnikov during the second period of the Devils 4-3 victory.The hit knocked Namestnikov into the boards ...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Flashy trades not always the smartest moves

Flashy trades not always the smartest moves

TAMPA — When it comes to the trade deadline, everyone wants the big names. They dream of blockbusters.Lightning fans would love Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson or Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh. Maybe even Rangers wing Rick Nash.But if you ...
Published: 02/17/18
Updated: 02/18/18
Dotchin working on ‘inconsistencies’

Dotchin working on ‘inconsistencies’

TAMPA — Lightning D Jake Dotchin was scratched Saturday against the Devils, making it the fifth time in six games that he did not play."Obviously the playing time is down a bit," Dotchin said after the morning skate. "I just got to keep working...
Published: 02/17/18
Updated: 02/18/18
Emphasis on ‘D’ continues as Lightning face Devils

Emphasis on ‘D’ continues as Lightning face Devils

The emphasis was on defense during Friday's practice and today's morning skate as the Lightning look to reduce not only the number of shots on goal allowed but also scoring chances. It allowed 39 in Thursday's win against the Red Wings and 33 in Thu...
Published: 02/17/18
Fans can play games with the Lightning at Bolts Family Carnival

Fans can play games with the Lightning at Bolts Family Carnival

Fans will have a chance to interact with Lightning players, coaches, staff and alumni and challenge them to games at the Bolts Family Carnival Feb. 18 from 1-4 p.m. at Amalie Arena.Games include derby race, wacky water race, high strik...
Published: 02/16/18
Why ‘Everyman’ Brian Boyle connected with Lightning fans

Why ‘Everyman’ Brian Boyle connected with Lightning fans

TAMPA — Artie Boyle was part of the sellout crowd at Amalie Arena for the NHL All-Star Game in late January.And Boyle, 63, stood with the rest of the 19,092 fans that gave his son, Devils forward Brian Boyle, the largest ovation of the wee...
Published: 02/16/18
Brayden Point held out of practice for body maintenance

Brayden Point held out of practice for body maintenance

C Brayden Point did not skate Friday, missing the Lightning's practice with what the team termed a "body maintenance" day.Point, who did not participate in Thursday's morning skate, played in Thursday's 4-1 win against the visiting Red Wings. He took...
Published: 02/16/18
Nikita Kucherov dazzling playmaking on display

Nikita Kucherov dazzling playmaking on display

Everyone at Amalie Arena thought Lightning wing Nikita Kucherov was going to shoot during a late second-period power play Thursday night.And why wouldn't they?Kucherov had a game-high 14 shot attempts (six on goal) against Detroit. He was feeling it....
Published: 02/16/18
Joe Smith’s takeaways from Thursday’s Lightning win over the Red Wings

Joe Smith’s takeaways from Thursday’s Lightning win over the Red Wings

What a spectacular shot fake/pass by Nikita Kucherov on Steven Stamkos' power play goal in the second. "It's almost like he slows the game down so much, he's a step or two ahead of guys," Red Wings D Mike Green said. Skilled? No question. But Kuchero...
Published: 02/16/18
Big boys lead the way as Lightning cruises past Red Wings

Big boys lead the way as Lightning cruises past Red Wings

TAMPA — The camouflage jersey, given to the Lightning player of the game, hung Thursday in the stall of captain Steven Stamkos.But the prize easily could have gone to Nikita Kucherov, who had a dazzling four-point performance (three assists) in...
Published: 02/15/18
Updated: 02/16/18