TAMPA — As if the Lightning, after three straight dismal seasons, needed another reason to take its rebuilding program seriously, there is this:
It is possible that star wing Marty St. Louis could ask to be traded if he does not believe the upcoming offseason changes make the team a playoff contender.
At least that's the impression he gave Monday at the St. Pete Times Forum after coach Rick Tocchet and general manager Brian Lawton were fired.
"I want to be on a winning team," he said. "It's three years of this and (we're going) back to square one, so I want to be on a winning team. That's the biggest thing. I'm not getting any younger. We'll see how it all shakes out this summer."
St. Louis, who will be 35 on June 18, had a stellar season. His 94 points tied his total for 2003-04, when he was league MVP, and his influence on star Steven Stamkos, who tied Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby for the league lead with 51 goals, is well-documented. He has one year left on a contract that will pay $4 million.
Asked what he expects of his career going forward, St. Louis said, "I don't really think about it too much until they put all the pieces in place. Then I'll assess where I'm at."