Monday, December 11, 2017
Tampa Bay Lightning

Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Dwayne Roloson tweaks his routine before surge

BOSTON — Lightning goaltenders coach Frantz Jean likes to work with what he calls "static" drills in which a goalie "works on the mechanics of the movement."

G Dwayne Roloson likes to work with what Jean calls "momentum plays where there's passing of pucks and shooting on reception."

Coincidence or not, Roloson's mini resurgence in which he entered Tuesday on a 3-0-0 streak with a 2.59 goals-against average and .928 save percentage came several weeks after he requested more of those kinds of drills; drills with which he said he is more comfortable.

"I like Frantz a lot. He's a great person and a great guy and obviously knows a lot about the game or he wouldn't be coaching at this level," Roloson said before Tuesday's loss to the Bruins. "For me, it was just some of the stuff he was doing, it didn't quite work into my game. … I had to get back doing the things I know work and allowed me to play as long as I have."

Roloson said he and Jean talked, "And he said, 'Okay, let me know what drills you want to do.' We've worked pretty well together with it."

Jean agreed.

"Roli has a lot of experience and has been in the league for a long time, so you go with the athlete that has that experience of what works for them and what doesn't," he said. "You have to give them that luxury of going back to certain patterns that they like to use and work on their technique."

"As a coach," Jean added, "you have to grant that and be confident enough to say, 'Yeah, let's do that.'"

Coach Guy Boucher said he liked the collaboration:

"They did a great job figuring out what had to be done. That's what coaching is and that's what experience is, finding those little things that make a difference at the moment. … It's not always being right, it's about getting it right, and that's where the ego for the player and coach has to be managed and managed well."

There was bit of a divergence on when Roloson began positioning himself higher in the crease. The player indicated it was part of recent adjustments. Jean said it happened around Christmas and also applied to G Mathieu Garon because "we were getting beat too much on straight shots and wanted to change that."

Either way, Roloson, 42, who entered Tuesday with a 3.66 goals-against average and .886 save percentage, hasn't looked better all season.

Roloson said he wishes he spoke up sooner.

"I didn't want to be an insubordinate guy and not go with what they were teaching, so I just wanted to do that," he said. "But at the end I have to do what's going to allow me to play the best."

"I'm there to assist the goaltenders," Jean said. "If they like certain drills to end up with the same objective at the end, that's how it should be. You shouldn't force things down someone's throat."

MEDICAL MATTERS: C Vinny Lecavalier (hand) and C Nate Thompson (upper body) were held out of their 18th and sixth games, respectively, but might play Thursday at New Jersey. "A definite possibility for both players," Boucher said. … D Victor Hedman was in the lineup after being a late scratch Monday because of illness.

ODDS AND ENDS: C Steven Stamkos was 6-for-18 on faceoffs as Tampa Bay lost 37 of 54. … Bruins D Zdeno Chara was honored pregame for his 1,000th game which occurred Saturday while Boston was in Los Angeles. … Lightning D Bruno Gervais was the healthy scratch.

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