Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Lightning's Thompson happy to heed Yzerman on visor

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Before the 2011-12 season, Lightning C Nate Thompson never seriously considered wearing a visor. He had worn one only once in his pro career, 2007-08, his last season in the AHL, when the league made them mandatory.

But after a conversation with Lightning GM Steve Yzerman, who lobbied all his players to wear the shield, Thompson decided the time was right.

"You think about it a little bit more when he tells you something," Thompson said Sunday. "And, boy, am I glad I do now."

In the first period Saturday against the Capitals, Thompson was hit above the right eye by a Mike Green slap shot. The shot shattered the visor. Without it, Thompson said, the result "could have been a lot worse" than the eight stitches it took to close his bloody wound.

Thompson did not play Sunday against the Sabres — a precaution, he and coach Jon Cooper said —— and Thompson, who reported no residual effects, said he is proceeding as if he will play Tuesday at Winnipeg.

As did Yzerman, who wore a visor late in his career after a scary eye injury, Thompson would not mind mandatory visors, though he agrees with grandfathering in players who do not currently wear them.

"I understand both sides of it," he said. "I understand if you haven't worn one for a long time in your career that you don't have to wear one. But I would highly suggest it. Obviously, I'm a little biased."

So is Cooper, though he characterizes himself as "old school."

"You see a play like that … you just can't react. The game is too fast," Cooper said. "I would probably advise a guy, if you can wear a visor, you should wear one."

PYATT HURT: F Tom Pyatt left the game in the first period as a precaution, Cooper said, after he took a hard hit "close to the head" from D Mike Weber. Cooper said he did not believe the hit malicious or that Pyatt would miss significant time. "But I talked to him, and he said he was just a little off," Cooper said. "In today's day and age, a little off means you're out."

REUNION: Cooper on Sunday saw his family for the first time since taking the Lightning job March 25. Wife Jessie drove 21/2 hours from Syracuse with twins Julia and Josephine, 4, and son Jonathan, 2. "It just brought a little comfort and reality," said Cooper, who previously coached AHL Syracuse. "It's amazing when (the kids are) that age, just being away from them for two weeks, they have completely changed. They can speak a little better. They're a little taller. They're just a little bit more grown up. That's the tough part, because you miss a little bit of those times."

MINOR MOVES: With Thompson out, F J.T. Wyman was called up from Syracuse. … With D Victor Hedman's return from a lower-body injury, D Mark Barberio was sent to Syracuse.

ODDS AND ENDS: Sabres G Jhonas Enroth, with 32 saves against Tampa Bay, is 4-0-1 in his past seven games with a 1.55 goals-against average and a .951 save percentage. … RW Pierre-Cedric Labrie (upper body) also was scratched.

Lightning's Thompson happy to heed Yzerman on visor 04/14/13 [Last modified: Sunday, April 14, 2013 10:49pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Cup-winning Lightning captain Dave Andreychuk makes Hockey Hall of Fame

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Hall of Fame coach Scotty Bowman said Dave Andreychuk's name has surfaced often the past eight years with the selection committee.

    30 Oct 2001:  Left wing Dave Andreychuk #25 of the Tampa Bay Lightning skates towards the blue line during the NHL game against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Canada.  The Maple Leafs defeated the Lightning 3-2.  Mandatory Credit:  Dave Sanford /Allsport
  2. Rays acquire slick-fielding shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria from Marlins

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Chaim Bloom said the Rays weren't necessarily in the market for a shortstop. The team has a number of those. But when the Marlins recently began shopping Adeiny Hechavarria, well, that was too much to pass up.

    Adeiny Hechavarria has emerged as one of baseball’s top defensive shortstops in the past three seasons with the Marlins.
  3. Rays at Pirates, 7:05 p.m. Tuesday, Pittsburgh

    The Heater

    Tonight: at Pirates

    7:05, PNC Park

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    Probable pitchers

    Rays: Alex Cobb (6-5, 4.05)

    PORT CHARLOTTE, FL - FEBRUARY 18:  Alex Cobb #53 of the Tampa Bay Rays poses for a portrait during the Tampa Bay Rays photo day on February 18, 2017 at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte, Floida.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
  4. Lightning journal: Forward Yanni Gourde agrees to two-year deal

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Just three years ago, Yanni Gourde was fighting to stay in pro hockey.

    Tampa Bay Lightning center Yanni Gourde celebrates after scoring against the Florida Panthers during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Saturday, March 11, 2017, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara) TPA108
  5. What they're saying about Dave Andreychuk making Hall of Fame

    Lightning Strikes

    "Dave helped me so much when I was just starting my career, a young kid that was looking to find his way as a hockey player, a person and a member of the Tampa Bay community. In addition to watching him compile such awe-inspiring statistics, I remember him as a big brother to me and many others, making sure all the …