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Diana C. Nearhos’ takeaways from the Lightning season opener

Jeff Vinik quips, banners quietly go up, and the new guys chip in.
Published Oct. 4, 2019

The line of the night might go to Jeff Vinik. The Lightning owner hosted a party for sponsors at the same locale as the party for the start of the postseason in April. “Welcome to the second round of the playoffs,” he quipped.

Amalie Arena has two new banners, but the Lightning didn’t hold a banner-raising ceremony. The 2018-19 Presidents’ Trophy and Atlantic Division Champions banners appeared quietly in the night. Okay, it was probably during the day, but there was no fanfare.

Welcome to Tampa Bay. Two Lightning newbies scored in their debuts. First, Kevin Shattenkirk scored on a knuckle puck off the crossbar to put Tampa Bay on top 2-1 in the second, then Pat Maroon jammed in a rebound late in the third for a 4-2 lead.