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Nicklas Lidstrom credits former teammate and Lightning GM Yzerman for early, important lessons

When Red Wings defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom on Thursday announced his retirement, the first former teammate he thanked was Steve Yzerman. When Lidstrom talked about building the foundation for his career, Yzerman -– Detroit’s captain when Lidstrom joined the team in 1991 and now the Lightning’s general manager -- was his first reference point.

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Reports on Hasek, Helenius keep Tampa Bay Lightning goalie search a topic of conversation

The Tampa Bay Lightning’s goaltending situation got some more media play the past few days when we read that Dominik Hasek is interested in returning to the NHL and 2006 Lightning first-round draft choice Riku Helenius wants a two-year, one-way contract to return from his native Finland.

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12:30: Chat live with columnist Gary Shelton

Want to talk about the NHL or NBA playoffs? The Bucs' offseason workouts? The Kellen Winslow trade/Dallas Clark signing? The Rays' series against the White Sox? The expected callup of Hideki Matsui? Whatever's on your mind, join Times sports columnist Gary Shelton for a live chat today, from 12:30-1:30 p.m. Can't make it? Leave a question in the "Comments'' area below, then check back afterward to replay the chat.

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When it comes to goalie search, Lightning GM Steve Yzerman said he first will try the trade route

The Lightning, leading up to free agency, will look to trade for a No. 1 goaltender, general manager Steve Yzerman said.

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Agent: Tampa Bay Lightning "a serious contender" for Swiss star Damien Brunner

The Lightning is a “serious contender” for the services of Damien Brunner, the Swiss star’s agent said Wednesday night.

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Wing Ryan Shannon signs 3-year deal in Switzerland; says Tampa was "a great place to play"

Ryan Shannon, whose disappointing season with the Tampa Bay Lightning ended in March with surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff, signed a three-year deal to play for ZSC Lions in Zurich, Switzerland.

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Times' Stroud, Jones to host WDAE morning show


Tampa Bay Times sportswriters Tom Jones and Rick Stroud will star in a new weekday morning show for sports radio station WDAE-AM (620), sparking a closer alliance between the newspaper and station owner Clear Channel Radio. The pair begin hosting their three-hour show at 6 a.m. Tuesday, taking the time slot once held by Dan Sileo.

Read the full story here.

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Former Lightning pick lands USHL coaching job

David Carle, who the Lightning selected with its final pick of the 2008 draft days after he was diagnosed with a deadly heart condition, has landed a job as an assistant with a USHL team.

Carle, who graduates from Denver University in June, has been hired as an assistant by the Green Bay Gamblers. He is the brother of former Lightning and current Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Matt Carle.

Read Damian Cristodero's 2009 profile of David Carle here.

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Several hurdles to overcome before G Riku Helenius would return to the Tampa Bay Lightning

Though the Tampa Bay Lightning has "tested the waters" to see if goaltender Riku Helenius wants to return to the Lightning, assistant general manager Julien BriseBois was clear Wednesday, Helenius is seen as "a prospect." In other words, he is not considered the immediate answer to the big club's goaltending search and would have to take a two-way contract if he wants to again play for the organization that made him the 15th overall pick of the 2006 draft.

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Tampa Bay Lightning GM Yzerman says he, among others, interested in Swiss star Damien Brunner

Part of the Tampa Bay Lightning’s summer to-do list is to find a top-six forward. That is why general manager Steve Yzerman, at the world championship in Helsinki, Finland, is keeping a close eye on Swiss forward Damien Brunner.

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Tampa Bay Lightning, down an assistant with Wayne Fleming ailing, might hire a coaching consultant

The Tampa Bay Lightning might hire a coaching consultant to take some of the work load off coach Guy Boucher and assistants Dan Lacroix and Marty Raymond. The move, only a consideration at this point, is taking shape because it is clear assistant Wayne Fleming, in the 13th month of his fight with brain cancer, is not returning to the team. His absence last season created added responsibilities for the remaining staff.

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Injured Tampa Bay Lightning D Mattias Ohlund: "I want to give myself another chance to play"

Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Mattias Ohlund is at the Tampa Bay Times Forum five days a week rehabbing from February’s major surgery on his left knee. Doctors used a layer of titanium to resurface Ohlund’s femur at the patellofemoral joint behind his knee cap. The titanium created a cushion where the cartilage that usually covers the bone had worn away and created painful bone-on-bone rubbing.

Ohlund on Friday said he wants to play again but knows there is no guarantee he can revive his 14-season career. “I want to give myself another chance to play and I’m hoping that’s going to happen, but who knows?” he said.

Ohlund, 35, who did not play last season after arthroscopic surgeries on both knees and has not skated since November, has four years and $11.75 million left on his seven-year deal that pays $5 million next season.

A full story will be in Sunday’s Tampa Bay Times. Here is Ohlund’s interview with the Times:

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12:30: Chat live with Tom Jones

Want to talk about the NHL or NBA playoffs, the Rays-Yankees series, the Bucs' offseason, sports on TV/radio? Join Times sports personality Tom Jones for a live chat today, from 12:30-1:30 p.m. Can't make it? No problem. Leave a question in advance in the "Comments'' area below, then check back afterward to replay the chat.

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Nate Thompson alternate captain for U.S. team at worlds

Lightning center Nate Thompson was named an alternate captain for the United States at the world championship, which begins Friday in Helsinki, Finland, and Stockholm, Sweden.

Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson, a member of the silver-medal-winning 2010 Olympic team, was named captain, and Jets center Jim Slater was named the other alternate captain.

The United States, which also includes Lightning forward J.T. Brown, opens play today against France. Canada, which has Lightning forward Teddy Purcell, begins against Slovakia, and Sweden, with Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman, faces Norway.


The NBC Sports Network will televise games with the United States and the medal games. The schedule, from USA Hockey:


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Stamkos among finalists for Lindsay Award

Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steven Stamkos is one of three finalists for the Ted Lindsay Award, given to the NHL's most outstanding player in the minds of the players. Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin and New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist are the other finalists. Here is the official release: NHLPA ANNOUNCES FINALISTS FOR 2011-12 TED LINDSAY AWARD Lundqvist, Malkin, & Stamkos voted by fellow members of the National Hockey League Players’ Association as finalists for the “Most Outstanding Player” award …First-time Ted Lindsay Award recipient will be named for 2011-12 TORONTO (May 2, 2012) – The National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) announced today that Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers, Evgeni Malkin of the Pittsburgh Penguins and Steven Stamkos of the Tampa Bay Lightning have been selected as finalists for the 2011-12 Ted Lindsay Award. The Ted Lindsay Award is presented annually to the “Most Outstanding Player” in the NHL, as voted by fellow members of the NHLPA. The Ted Lindsay Award is the only award voted on by the players themselves, carrying on the tradition established by the Lester B. Pearson Award since 1970-71. The Award hon …Full Story