The Lightning had its first full scrimmage of training camp Sunday at the Ice Sports Forum in Brandon, with many fans coming out to take advantage of one of the few open practices.
Two of the top attention-getters, captain Steven Stamkos and RW Jonathan Drouin did not participate. Drouin was held out for the second straight day due to a minor upper-body injury, and though he skated on his own before practice, will likely not play in the scrimmage Monday at Amalie Arena....
09/20/14 Lightning Strikes
TAMPA — Those fans expecting to see touted right wing prospect Jonathan Drouin at today's open practice and scrimmage in Brandon might be disappointed.
Drouin, the No. 3 overall draft pick in 2013, was held out of Saturday's practice due to an upper-body injury. His status is day to day, and though he might not participate in scrimmages the next two days, coach Jon Cooper said Drouin should return sometime this week, including playing in an exhibition game. ...
Steven Stamkos is the Lightning captain, the face of the franchise and one of the top players in the league.
And, believe it or not, Stamkos, at age 24, is the longest-tenured Tampa Bay player, having been here since getting drafted No. 1 overall in 2008.
But when it comes to leadership, Stamkos said he has plenty of help, with three former captains on the roster; Eric Brewer (Blues), Brenden Morrow (Stars) and Ryan Callahan (Rangers). While Stamkos carries himself like a captain, and is always available at his locker after wins or losses, he likes having the other veterans chip in....
09/20/14 Lightning Strikes
TAMPA — Lightning center Brian Boyle says he has witnessed his share of miracles.
The first, he jokes, is how his parents, Artie and Judy, handled their finances with 13 children in an Irish-Catholic family in Hingham, Mass.
"Things just kind of worked out," Brian said, smiling.
Then there's what Brian calls the "living miracle," Artie, 59, who beat kidney cancer that had been diagnosed as terminal. Diagnosed with metastatic renal cell carcinoma in 1999, Artie, a longtime salesman and former truck company owner, was told he had a 5 percent chance to live. His kidney was removed, but the cancer spread to his lungs. Doctors gave up hope....
Those fans expecting to see touted RW prospect Jonathan Drouin at today’s open practice and scrimmage in Brandon will be disappointed.
Drouin, the No. 3 overall pick in 2013, was held out of Saturday’s practice due to an upper-body injury. His status is day-to-day, and though he may not participate in scrimmages the next two days, coach Jon Cooper said Drouin, 19, should return sometime this week and be able to play in an exhibition game....
09/19/14 Lightning Strikes
TAMPA — Lightning captain Steven Stamkos said players were told not to read too much into what groups they practice with or what lines they are on during training camp.
But Stamkos centering a line with LW Ondrej Palat and RW Ryan Callahan during Friday's first practice wasn't a random selection. The trio played together a little bit last season, and coach Jon Cooper said Stamkos will be paired with several familiar faces during camp before deciding on the top line....
Lightning captain Steven Stamkos said players were told not to read too much into what groups they practiced with - or lines they were on - during training camp.
But the fact Stamkos centered a line with Ondrej Palat and veteran Ryan Callahan during Friday's first practice wasn't a random selection. The trio played together a little bit last season, and coach Jon Cooper said Stamkos will be paired with several familiar faces during camp before deciding the top line....
09/18/14 Lightning Strikes
TAMPA — Coach Jon Cooper has heard his team is a "chic pick" this season.
Considering the Lightning's surprise run to third in the Eastern Conference last year, the team opened training camp at Amalie Arena carrying larger expectations.
Cooper made sure to address the hype in his first meeting with the team Thursday afternoon, telling it "you don't have a right to make the playoffs."...
09/18/14 Lightning Strikes
TAMPA — C Steven Stamkos and G Ben Bishop said they'll have no restrictions as they take the ice today for the team's first practice of training camp.
It's encouraging news for the Lightning, considering its two most important players are coming off serious injuries.
Stamkos said his surgically repaired right leg has felt great, with "no issues" in Thursday's testing. He missed 45 games last season after breaking the tibia in November....
Lightning coach Jon Cooper can see a pronounced difference in touted prospect RW Jonathan Drouin from the beginning of last year’s camp to now.
“He’s leaner, he’s quicker, he’s faster, he seems more mature out on the ice,” Cooper said.
While Drouin, 19, is likely to make the team - as opposed to getting sent back to juniors - Cooper tried to temper the expectations on the third overall pick from 2013....
Lightning goalie Ben Bishop was pretty happy with how he performed in throwing the ceremonial first pitch at Wednesday's Rays-Yankees game.
"I don't know if my velocity was up to speed," he joked. "But my location was pretty good."
More importantly, Bishop is feeling good physically heading into Friday's first full practice at Amalie Arena. Bishop, who underwent right wrist surgery in April, said he's not quite 100-percent yet, but he's "getting there" and doesn't expect to be limited during camp....
Lightning captain Steven Stamkos went through an array of testing and photo shoots before getting surrounded by cameras at Thursday's opening of camp.
"Summer is over," he said, smiling. "It starts tomorrow."
Stamkos realizes there's high expectations surrounding Tampa Bay, considering its surprising run to the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference last season. Many in the media are predicting them to make a deep playoff run, but Stamkos points out the danger in getting too ahead of themselves....
The Lightning announced its training camp schedule Wednesday night, with three open practices on tap.
Tampa Bay opens camp Thursday at Amalie Arena, where there will be physicals and testing. The first full practice is Friday at Amalie Arena.
The Lightning will move to the Ice Forum in Brandon for an open practice Sunday, starting at 9 a.m. and including a scrimmage from 11:15 a.m,-12. The other open practices are on Sept. 27 Fan Fest (scrimmage) and Oct. 1 in Estero.
The current camp schedule is below and is subject to change....
09/17/14 Lightning Strikes
What a difference a year makes.
Considering how many questions surrounded the Lightning before last season — from who its goalie (and captain) would be to how many rookies would make the team — Tampa Bay opens training camp today at Amalie Arena with a lot more clarity.
It has its No. 1 goalie in Vezina Trophy finalist Ben Bishop, a healthy — and happy — captain in Steven Stamkos, and a returning young core that has many pundits predicting the Lightning to be among the best in the Eastern Conference. ...
The Lightning opens its training camp Thursday at Amalie Arena, starting with physicals and testing. The first day on the ice will be Friday.
Most of the team has been working out together in informal skates in Brandon and Amalie Arena in recent weeks.
The team announced its roster, and there aren't many surprises. The only new addition is goalie Peter Mannino, the former University of Denver product who played in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre last season....