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FROM OUT OF THE BLUE

Four months ago, they were mostly strangers. Now, unified by Phil Esposito's quest to transplant hockey to Florida, they have bonded together to become the first-ever Tampa Bay Lightning. Over the next three pages, take the time to meet the players _ from Mikael Andersson to Rob Zamuner, and everyone in between.

Mikael Andersson

Position: Left wing

Height: 5-11

Weight: 185

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: May 10, 1966

Birthplace: Malmo, Sweden

NHL career: Andersson was a first-round pick, 18th overall, by Buffalo. In 264 NHL games, for Buffalo and Hartford, he has 39 goals and 93 assists.

How obtained: Signed as a free agent.

Hockey highlight: Winning the World Championship last April and two Calder Cups.

Notes: He's single. His father, Ronny, and brothers, Thomas and Niklas also play hockey. He teaches at hockey schools in Sweden. He enjoys tennis, water skiing and golf. Andersson would like to one day own his own business.

Marc Bergevin

Position: Defense

Height: 6-0

Weight: 185

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: Aug. 11, 1965

Birthplace: Montreal, Quebec

NHL career: Bergevin was drafted in the third round by Chicago in 1983 and has played for the Blackhawks, the New York Islanders and Hartford. In 421 NHL games, he has 21 goals and 63 assists.

How obtained: Signed as a free agent.

Hockey highlight: Winning the Calder Cup at Springfield (AHL) twice (1988-89 and 1990-91).

Notes: He's married; his wife's name is Ruth. Bergevin took a course last summer at cooking school to become a chef. "My dad was always cooking at home," he said. His best dish: "two eggs, side by each, with a pair of toast."

Tim Bergland

Position: Right wing

Height: 6-3

Weight: 194

Birthdate: Jan. 11, 1965

Birthplace: Crookston, Minn.

NHL career: He was drafted by Washington in the fourth round in 1983, and has eight goals and 18 assists in 101 games for the Capitals.

How obtained: Expansion draft from Washington.

Hockey highlight: "Individually, my first NHL game (in 1990 against Winnipeg), but playing in the (Wales) Conference finals against Boston two years ago was great."

Notes: He's married; his wife's name is Claudia. He enjoys hunting and fishing and science fiction novels. A business major at the University of Minnesota, he's also interested in the financial world.

Brian Bradley

Position: Center

Height: 5-10

Weight: 177

Shoots: Right

Birthdate: Jan. 21, 1965

Birthplace: Kitchener, Ontario

NHL career: Bradley was drafted in the second round by Calgary in 1983 and has played for Calgary, Vancouver and Toronto. In 323 NHL games, he has 71 goals and 132 assists.

How obtained: Expansion draft from Toronto.

Hockey highlight: "Winning the world championships in 1985; I set up the winning goal."

Notes: Bradley is married; his wife's name is Carrie Lynn. He's an avid golfer, carrying a 1 or 2 handicap, and would like to eventually play professionally.

Shawn Chambers

Position: Defense

Height: 6-2

Weight: 200

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: Oct. 11, 1966

Birthplace: Royal Oak, Mich.

NHL career: Chambers was the first pick, fourth overall, by Minnesota in the 1987 supplemental draft. In 200 NHL games, mostly with Minnesota, he has 15 goals and 47 assists. He injured his left knee and only played nine games last year, two for Washington.

How obtained: Expansion draft from Washington.

Hockey highlight: He says playing in the 1991 Stanley Cup finals was his greatest hockey moment.

Notes: He's married; his wife's name is Lisa, and they have a son Cody. Chambers enjoys golfing and boating.

Danton Cole

Position: Right wing

Height: 5-11

Weight: 185

Shoots: Right

Birthdate: Jan. 10, 1967

Birthplace: Pontiac, Mich.

NHL career: Cole was drafted in the sixth round by Winnipeg in 1985. In 120 NHL games, all for the Jets, he has 21 goals and 17 assists.

How obtained: Trade from Winnipeg, for future considerations.

Hockey highlight: "At Michigan State, we won the NCAA championship in 1986. It was such a good feeling...something I want to get back."

Notes: He's married; his wife's name is Debbie. He graduated with a degree in financing and is working toward a brokerage license so he can sell securities.

Adam Creighton

Position: Center

Height: 6-5

Weight: 210

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: June 2, 1965

Birthplace: Burlington, Ontario

NHL career: Creighton was a first-round pick (11th overall) by Buffalo in 1983. In 445 NHL games for the Sabres, Chicago and the New York Islanders, he has scored 132 goals and has added 154 assists.

How obtained: Picked in the waiver draft (first overall) from the Islanders.

Hockey highlight: Creighton enjoyed his finest NHL year with Chicago during the 1989-90 season, scoring 34 goals and assisting on 36 others - both career.

Notes: He's married; his wife's name is Linda, and they have a a son Jack.

Doug Crossman

Position: Defense

Height: 6-2

Weight: 190

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: June 30, 1960

Birthplace: Peterborough, Ontario

NHL career: He was drafted in the sixth round by Chicago in 1979 and has played for the Blackhawks, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, the New York Islanders, Hartford and Detroit. In 805 NHL games, he has 93 goals and 324 assists.

How obtained: Expansion draft from Quebec.

Hockey highlight: "Making the Stanley Cup finals (in 1983 and 1987 with Philadelphia) and also playing in the Canada Cup in 1987."

Notes: Crossman is married; his wife's name is Patti. They have a daughter, Jaclyn. Although just a beginner, he enjoys playing the electric guitar.

Rob DiMaio

Position: Center

Height: 5-10

Weight: 190

Shoots: Right

Birthdate: Feb. 19, 1968

Birthplace: Calgary, Alberta

NHL career: He was drafted in the sixth round by the New York Islanders in 1987. In 74 NHL games, all for the Islanders, he has six goals and two assists.

How obtained: Expansion draft from New York.

Hockey highlight: "Winning two Memorial championships; winning the World Junior Championship for Canada in 1988; and winning the Calder Cup in Springfield three years ago. But finally playing in the NHL, getting where you want to be, was the biggest thrill."

Notes: He's single. DiMaio recently built an off-season getaway home on a lake in Kalispell, Mont.

Stan Drulia

Position: Right wing

Height: 5-10

Weight: 180

Shoots: Right

Birthdate: Jan. 5, 1968

Birthplace: Elmira, N.Y.

NHL career: As an underage junior, Drulia was an 11th-round pick by Pittsburgh in 1986. He signed as a free agent with Edmonton in 1989. Has never played in the NHL, but has been a prolific scorer in the OHL, AHL and ECHL.

How obtained: Signed as a free agent

Hockey highlight: "Playing my first exhibition game (against Minnesota on Sept. 19) was the most exciting moment for me. And playing in my first NHL game will be the biggest moment."

Note: He's married; his wife's name is Sharon. They have a daughter, Shawn. Drulia loves to bass fish.

Roman Hamrlik

Position: Defense

Height: 6-2

Weight: 189

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: April 12, 1974

Birthplace: Gottwaldov, Czechoslovakia

NHL career: He was the Lightning's first-round pick (first overall) in the 1992 draft. He has played 48 games for ZPS Zlin of the Czechoslovakia Senior League, scoring seven goals and adding seven assists.

How obtained: No. 1 draft pick.

Hockey highlight: "Playing in the NHL exhibition games to this point," he said through an interpreter.

Note: Hamrlik is single. He enjoys cooking and would one day like to be a chef. His brother, Martin, was selected in the second round by Hartford last year.

Mike Hartman

Position: Left wing

Height: 6-0

Weight: 192

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: Feb. 7, 1967

Birthplace: Detroit

NHL career: He was drafted by Buffalo in the seventh round in 1986 and has played for Buffalo and Winnipeg. In 300 NHL games, Hartman has 38 goals and 30 assists. He's fifth on Buffalo's all-time list for penalty minutes (890) and led Winnipeg in that category (264).

How obtained: Expansion draft from Winnipeg.

Hockey highlight: "My first NHL game (in 1986) and then playing in the playoffs against Boston (1987-88)."

Notes: Hartman is married; his wife's name is Lauren. He chose playing in the minors over collegiate hockey at Michigan or Michigan State.

Ken Hodge

Position: Center

Height: 6-1

Weight: 200

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: April 13, 1966

Birthplace: Windsor, Ontario

NHL career: He was drafted in the third round by Minnesota in 1984 and has played for the North Stars and Boston. In 117 NHL games, he has 37 goals and 41 assists. He had 30 goals and 29 assists in 70 games with the Bruins two years ago and was a finalist top rookie.

How obtained: Acquired with Matt Hervey from Boston for Darin Kimblee and future considerations.

Hockey highlight: "Playing my first game for the Bruins in the Garden two years ago was very special. My dad played there, and I grew up watching him play there."

Notes: He's single. His father, Ken Sr., played 13 NHL seasons, all with Phil Esposito.

Pat Jablonski

Position: Goaltender

Height: 6-0

Weight: 178

Glove: Right

Birthdate: June 20, 1967

Birthplace: Toledo, Ohio

NHL career: Jablonski was drafted by St. Louis in the seventh round in 1985. In 22 NHL games, he has a 5-12-3 record with a 4.18 goals-against average.

How obtained: Acquired along with Steve Tuttle, Darin Kimble and Rob Robinson from St. Louis for future considerations.

Hockey highlight: "Two years ago, we were playing Chicago _ St. Louis and Chicago is a big rivalry in every sport _ and were going for first, and Curtis Joseph got hurt in the first minute or two and I came in. We beat them 3-1."

Notes: He's single. He enjoys golf and fishing.

Chris Kontos

Position: Left wing

Height: 6-1

Weight: 195

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: Dec. 10, 1963

Birthplace: Toronto, Ontario

NHL career: He was drafted in the first round, 15th overall, by the New York Rangers in 1982 and has played for the Rangers, Pittsburgh and most recently, for Los Angeles in 1898-90. In 164 NHL games, he has 27 goals and 45 assists.

How obtained: Signed as a free agent.

Hockey highlight: "When we beat Edmonton (the defending Stanley Cup champions) in 1988-89, I felt I was a contributor and a big part of it." He scored nine goals in 11 playoff games that year.

Note: Kontos is married; his wife's name is Joanne. He enjoys bass fishing and all water sports.

Basil McRae

Position: Left wing

Height: 6-2

Weight: 205

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: Jan. 5, 1961

Birthplace: Beaverton, Ontario

NHL career: Drafted by Quebec in the fifth round in 1980, McRae has played for Quebec, Toronto, Detroit and Minnesota. In 442 NHL games, he has scored 48 goals, 69 assists and 2,061 penalty minutes.

How obtained: Expansion draft from Minnesota.

Hockey highlight: "My biggest thrill - and disappointment - was being in the Stanley Cup finals with Minnesota (in 1991)."

Notes: McRae is married; his wife's name is Jill. They have two children, Alexandra and Phillip. "I don't have any hobbies. When I come home, my wife makes me watch the kids."

Michel Mongeau

Position: Center

Height: 5-9

Weight: 190

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: Feb. 9, 1965

Birthplace: Nun's Island, Quebec

NHL career: He was signed as a free agent in 1989 and acquired from Quebec in 1990. In 50 NHL games, all for St. Louis, he has five goals and 18 assists. But he's been a prolific scorer in the IHL - second in 1988-89 and first in 1989-90.

How obtained: Expansion draft from St. Louis.

Hockey highlight: "My first goal in the NHL against Buffalo, Clint Malarchuk was in the net, three years ago. I have that puck at home, like a little trophy."

Notes: Mongeau is married; his wife's name is Chantal. He enjoys watching movies, playing golf and bowling.

Rob Ramage

Position: Defense

Height: 6-2

Weight: 195

Shoots: Right

Birthdate: Jan. 11, 1959

Birthplace: Byron, Ontario

NHL career: He was drafted in the first round, and first overall, by Colorado in 1979 and has played for St. Louis, Calgary, Toronto and Minnesota. In 949 NHL games, he has 134 goals, 410 assists and 2,022 penalty minutes.

How obtained: Expansion draft from Minnesota.

Hockey highlight: "Winning the Stanley cup in 1989 with Calgary was the highlight, without a doubt. It's total euphoria."

Notes: Ramage is married; his wife's name is Dawn. They have three children, Tamara, Jaclyn and John. He enjoys scuba diving and travel.

Joe Reekie

Position: Defense

Height: 6-3

Weight: 215

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: Feb. 22, 1965

Birthplace: Victoria, British Columbia

NHL career: He was drafted in the sixth round by Buffalo in 1985 and has played for Buffalo and the Islanders. In 255 NHL games, he has 11 goals and 51 assists.

How obtained: Expansion draft from the Islanders.

Hockey highlight: "Probably being the first player ever drafted twice. I was first drafted by Hartford when I was 18 in my last year of juniors and then again by Buffalo."

Notes: He's married; his wife's name is Elise. They have a son, Justin. His interests include "golf and did I say golf?"

Stephane J.G. Richer

Position: Defense

Height: 5-11

Weight: 200

Shoots: Right

Birthdate: April 28, 1966

Birthplace: Hull, Quebec

NHL career: He was signed as a free agent by Montreal in 1988. He's never played in the NHL, but has scoring punch. He had 11 goals and 38 assists in 67 games for Phoenix of the IHL two years ago, and 17 goals and 47 assists for Fredericton of the AHL last year.

How obtained: Signed as a free agent.

Hockey highlight: "Getting to the finals of the World Championships in 1983."

Notes: Richer (pronounced Ree-SHAY) is married; his wife's name is Josee. They have a daughter, Gabrielle. He enjoys spending time with his family and suspense movies.

Anatoli Semenov

Position: Left wing

Height: 6-2

Weight: 190

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: March 5, 1962

Birthplace: Moscow, Soviet Union

NHL career: He was drafted by Edmonton in the sixth round in 1989 after 11 seasons with Dynamo Moscow of the Soviet National League. In 116 NHL games, he has scored 37 goals and 36 assists. He also had five goals and five assists in 12 playoff games in 1990-91.

How obtained: Expansion draft from Edmonton.

Hockey highlight: "(Watching) the Stanley Cup final twice (in 1984 and 1987), and my first game in the NHL in 1989. I played maybe two shifts in Chicago."

Notes: He and his his wife, Nazia, have a son, Alexi. He cherishes the time talking around the family table back home. He enjoys tennis and music, including Genesis.

Martin Simard

Position: Right wing

Height: 6-3

Weight: 215

Shoots: Right

Birthdate: June 25, 1966

Birthplace: Montreal, Quebec

NHL career: Simard was signed as a free agent by Calgary in 1987 after three professional seasons with Salt Lake of the IHL. In 37 NHL games, he has scored one goal, added five assists and accumulated 172 penalty minutes.

How obtained: In trade from Quebec for Tim Hunter. Hockey highlight: "For me, it was when Calgary signed me as a free agent five years ago. I never got drafted, but they gave me the chance."

Note: Simard is married; his wife's name is Karolyne. He says he's a "quiet guy," who enjoys golfing, going to movies and relaxing with his wife.

Peter Taglianetti

Position: Defense

Height: 6-2

Weight: 200

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: Aug. 15, 1963

Birthplace: Framingham, Mass.

NHL career: Hewas drafted in the third round by Winnipeg in 1983 and has played for Winnipeg, Minnesota and Pittsburgh. In 306 NHL games, he has 14 goals, 49 assists and 768 penalty minutes.

How obtained: Expansion draft from Pittsburgh.

Hockey highlight: "For me, the highlight was winning that first Stanley Cup in Pittsburgh. The last month we started playing well, and everything just snowballed."

Notes: He's married; his wife's name is Allison. They have three sons, Patrick and twins Andrew and Jonathan. For him, a relaxing day is a pickup hockey game.

John Tucker

Position: Left wing

Height: 6-0

Weight: 200

Shoots: Right

Birthdate: Sept. 29, 1964

Birthplace: Windsor, Ontario

NHL career: He was selected by Buffalo in the second round in 1983 and has played for Buffalo, Washington and the New York Islanders. In 403 NHL games, Tucker has 128 goals and 177 assists.

How obtained: Signed as a free agent; played for Asagio of the Italian league last year.

Hockey highlight: "We were playing Boston (in the 1987-88 playoffs) and were down two games to one going back to Buffalo, and I scored four goals."

Notes: He's married; his wife's name is Lynn. He loves boating and driving his 1987 ragtop Corvette.

Wendell Young

Position: Goaltender

Height: 5-9

Weight: 181

Glove: Left

Birthdate: Aug. 1, 1963

Birthplace: Halifax, Nova Scotia

NHL career: Young was drafted by Vancouver in the fourth round in 1981 and has played for Vancouver, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. In 137 NHL games, he's 47-58-9 and a 4.16 goals-against average.

How obtained: Expansion draft from Pittsburgh. (the Lightning's first choice).

Hockey highlight: "Winning the Stanley Cup the last two years; you can't get any better than that. That's the big thrill."

Notes: He's married; his wife's name is Paula. They have two children, Gabrielle and Matthew. He's always has been interested in the law, but turned pro at 20.

Rob Zamuner

Position: Center

Height: 6-2

Weight: 202

Shoots: Left

Birthdate: Sept. 17, 1969

Birthplace: Oakville, Ontario

NHL career: Drafted by the New York Rangers in 1989 in the third round. In nine NHL games, he has one goal and two assists. Zamuner was, however, a prolific scorer in the OHL, IHL and AHL.

How obtained: Signed as a free agent.

Hockey highlight: "Playing in my first NHL game last year. It was against Calgary. I had an assist. Just finally making it, getting the chance to play and actualizing your dream."

Notes: Zamuner is single. He likes golf and alternative music. He's taking a correspondence course from the University of Waterloo, the start toward a B.A. degree.

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