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)

Wrong skates make for short outing for Tampa Bay Lightning's Zenon Konopka

MONTREAL — Who would have thought a pair of skates could make so much difference? Not Zenon Konopka.

"It's a huge difference," the Lightning center said. "Even I didn't think it would make that much difference."

But when Konopka on Wednesday against the Sabres tried to play with a borrowed pair, he found, after two shifts, he could not. So after 47 seconds of ice time, including a fight, Konopka was shut down.

It was a disappointing ending to a long, tiring day for the call-up from AHL Norfolk, whose plane did not land in Buffalo, N.Y., until 30 minutes before game time and without the bag that carried his pads and skates.

Konopka wore the shoulder pads of Ryan Malone and shin guards of Gary Roberts, both of whom are injured. A native of nearby Niagara Falls, Konopka said he called to borrow a buddy's skates of similar size.

"But that didn't work out too well," he said.

He tried to use teammate Jeff Halpern's skates.

"I just couldn't skate with skates that aren't mine," Konopka said Thursday. "You just don't have any balance. It feels like you're on ice in running shoes. But fighting would be one way to contribute to the team."

Konopka, in his skates, played and fought Francis Bouillon 2:23 into Thursday's game.

MALONE STILL OUT: Malone missed his fourth game with an upper-body injury he called "nagging" rather than acute but either way is becoming a real pain.

"It's disappointing because we're losing," Malone said. "You want to be out there helping the guys try to battle through it. But if you're not close to 100 percent, you don't want to be out there hurting the team, either."

Malone seemed to be hitting his stride with four goals and nine points in seven games. More ice time from coach Rick Tocchet didn't hurt. Neither did playing with C Vinny Lecavalier and Marty St. Louis.

"You're playing with two great players, so the points are going to come," Malone said. "The main thing is you want to see a couple more wins."

GRATTON RELENTS: C Chris Gratton decided to report to Norfolk and is expected to be in tonight's lineup, general manager Brian Lawton said.

ODDS AND ENDS: D Jamie Heward was recalled from Norfolk and was in the lineup. … RW Adam Hall (upper body) and D Mike Lundin also were scratched.

Wrong skates make for short outing for Tampa Bay Lightning's Zenon Konopka 12/11/08 [Last modified: Sunday, December 14, 2008 1:08pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Tampa lawyer Fred Ridley to be new chairman of Augusta National, Masters' home (w/ video)

    Golf

    AUGUSTA, Ga. — Fred Ridley first came to Augusta National to compete in the 1976 Masters as the U.S. Amateur champion, and he played the opening round in the traditional pairing with the defending champion, Jack Nicklaus.

  2. Rays send down Chase Whitley, Andrew Kittredge; add Chih-Wei Hu, activate Alex Cobb

    Blogs

    After having to cover more than five innings following a short start by Austin Pruitt, the Rays shuffled their bullpen following Wednesday's game, sending down RHPs Chase Whitley and Andrew Kittredge,

    The Kittredge move was expected, as he was summoned to add depth to the pen Wednesday in advance of RHP Alex …

  3. MLB commissioner Rob Manfred moves closer to wanting a decision on Rays stadium

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred called Wednesday for urgency from Tampa Bay area government leaders to prioritize and move quicker on plans for a new Rays stadium.

    MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred talks with reporters at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2017.
  4. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Wednesday's Rays-Blue Jays game

    The Heater

    The Austin Pruitt experiment might be over, or at least put on pause. After allowing six runs over seven innings to Seattle on Friday, the rookie didn't get through the fourth Wednesday, giving up five runs on four homers. His ERA for past six starts: 5.29.

  5. Six home runs doom Rays in loss to Blue Jays (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — A curve that didn't bounce was the difference Wednesday as the Rays lost 7-6 to the Blue Jays in front of 8,264, the smallest Tropicana field crowd since Sept. 5, 2006.

    Tampa Bay Rays shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria (11) greets center fielder Kevin Kiermaier (39) at the plate after his two run home run in the third inning of the game between the Toronto Blue Jays and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2017.