There aren't many reoccuring themes on this webpage. Mostly, because I think of what I want to write about 3 minutes before I start writing it. Well, time to try something new.
For the hockey season I'm going to be posting a column every Monday tracking the Lightning's progress through the season. Why Monday? Because it gives me something to do during Monday Night Football. So without further wasting of time....
The Weekly Roundup Week One
Weekly Record: 0-1
Overall Record: 0-1
Wasteland +/- : -3
Key Injuries: Kurtis Forster. The point man on the second power play unit is out for 5-7 days with a lower back injury. It looks like David Hale will be the first choice to replace him for the upcoming games. Victor Hedman might see some time on the power play.
Highlight: Not many to choose from since they only suited up once and skated to a 6-3 loss. However, I think the honor should go to young Mr. Hedman’s first NHL point. In the second period against Atlanta he fired a nice low shot towards the net that was deflected in by Marty St Louis.
Despite being a minus 2 for the game Hedman looked comfortable on the ice all game long. He logged 26:27 in ice time (8th in the league already!) and used his size to shield off the defenders several times.
Disappointed By: Mike Smith. A couple of the goals were not his fault, but still in the end he gave up six. The two late goals killed the comeback. The Bolts will need him to step up to get to the promised land.
Surprised By: Vincent Lecavalier. He didn’t score a goal and had a couple of passes bounce off his stick. However, he played like he was healthy once again. He used his body to shield defenders from the puck, he danced through the neutral zone and he zipped passes around the ice.
What shocked me the most though was on a giveaway late in the first period. Skating out from behind his own net he lost control of the puck to an Atlanta player. Instead of giving up Vinny threw himself in front of the net to block the shot. It wasn’t necessary at Smith made the save in front of the crease, but to showing that kind of sacrifice might be an indication that he understands what the “C” on his chest means.
Playoff Confidence: 65% They outplayed Atlanta for large parts of the game. A couple of bounces their way and it might be a different story.
Pet Peeve of the Week: Announcers who use the word “a” before naming a player. As in, “If you have ‘a’ Brett Farve you know he likes to throw the ball deep”. C’mon, just say “if you have Brett Farve“, it’s not like there is more than one of him out there in the world.