Top Five Tampa Bay Lightning Losses That Changed the Season

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New Head Coach Jon Cooper In a risky move, Lightning head coach Guy Boucher was released and Jon Cooper, Syracuse Crunch head coach, was hired to replace him — less than 48 hours after the announcement was made. Cooper was ready to make a push for a playoff run but several days into the coaching change, his first loss occurred. On April 2, the Lightning played the Florida Panthers and lost in a shootout 3-2. Boucher may not have been able to put many wins on the scoreboard but as the losing trend continued, replacing him with Cooper, a coach without any NHL experience, failed to help the Lightning’s record. 5. Cory Conacher Trade Steve Yzerman, general manager, is probably still haunted by the decision to trade Conacher for Ben Bishop, goalie of the Ottawa Senators . The trade sparked by Lindback’s injury sent shock waves around the NHL. Conacher was a vital role in every one of the Lightning’s wins when he stepped out on the ice. The first loss without Conacher was a few days after the trade on April 6, a 4-2 loss to the New York Islanders . Yzerman is probably still asking himself, “What was I thinking?” The start of next season brings new opportunities for the Lightning. source:

5 Biggest Questions Surrounding Tampa Bay Lightning This Offseason


Steven Stamkos deservedly earns $7.5 million per season. But, his contract isn’t the largest on the team and the Bolts need salary-cap space. Greg Fiume/Getty Images One league-wide front-office concern is the change in the salary cap for the 2013-14 season. The salary cap is set to drop from $70 million to $64 million next season.  Tampa Bay had $64 million in salary this season and has players like Benoit Pouliot, Pierre-Cedric Labrie and Keith Aulie with expired contracts. Finding ways to free up cap space will be crucial. How Can the Injury Woes Be Solved? An injury to Anders Lindback not only hurt the team’s momentum, but his development. It cost the Bolts Cory Conacher, too. Jared Wickerham/Getty Images Every NHL team faces injuries. That is just a part of the physical, fast-paced game. source:

Tampa Bay Lightning Prospects Continue Shining In AHL Playoffs

This is because the Syracuse Crunch are two wins away from advancing to the AHL‘s Eastern Conference Finals. Led by AHL MVP Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat, the Crunch seem to be doing everything right. It didn’t matter that lots of guys spent time with Tampa Bay, causing lines to be shuffled and reshuffled a number of times. Heck, seeing coach Jon Cooper get promoted midseason didn’t hurt much either as the team just kept going and, for the most part, winning. Saturday night’s 5-3 Game 2 win over the Springfield Falcons ( Columbus Blue Jackets ) was huge in more than one way. First and foremost, the Crunch have two chances (both at home) beginning May 15 to close things out. Another noteworthy accomplishment regarding this game is that Johnson scored the first playoff hat trick in Crunch history. His 13 postseason points tie Chris Bourque for the league lead. Maybe I’m jumping the gun a little, but could the Lightning please give their fans a chance to see this guy full-time next season? Other players capable of breaking out at any time for the Crunch are Richard Panik (six points) and Brett Connolly (only four points, but finished ninth in regular season scoring). Goaltender Cedrick Desjardins is also worth keeping an eye on, with a 5-0 record and fairly good 2.40 GAA thus far. Though 2013 might have ended on a sour note for the Lightning, another deep playoff run by their prospects could result in a second consecutive Calder Cup championship. source:

Lightning owner Jeff Vinik dreams big about downtown Tampa’s redevelopment

By nature, hedge funds are geared toward wealthier investors who can absorb more risk in betting on major shifts in markets, currencies and industries. It’s not unusual for hedge funds to have a relatively short shelf life and to vary in size as investors deposit and withdraw large sums. But Vinik Asset Management’s recent turbulent run has seen some investors pulling out after disappointing results. The hedge fund saw its assets under management dwindle from $5.9 billion in September 2011 to about $3.4 billion at the end of 2012, according to its quarterly report filed in February with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Vinik plans to close the fund by June 30. Vinik said he was closing the fund because of a combination of factors: disappointing results, loss of investors and “what’s best” for himself and his partner. “I was disappointed,” he said. “I love to win and I like to have a good performance.” It was harder shuttering his hedge fund this year than in 2000, Vinik said, because he has more investors and more than twice as many employees. Of 50 employees, about 40 will work for spin-off companies being created in both Boston or Tampa. “Those other 10, if that’s what the number is, I’ll do everything in my power to help them get good jobs. source:


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