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Lightning Round: playing again after another long break

Trying to avoid a slow start again

Tampa Bay Lightning v New Jersey Devils
NEWARK, NJ - FEBRUARY 15: Ross Colton #79 of the Tampa Bay Lightning looks on against the New Jersey Devils on February 15, 2022 at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.
Photo by Rich Graessle/Getty Images

The Tampa Bay Lightning are back tonight after another week off to play the Edmonton Oilers. These breaks have been good to the team, as they’ve been able to rest and heal up, but has forced the Bolts out of their regular season routine and will take time to get them ramped up again.

Tampa Bay had a week off earlier this month before playing Colorado, who promptly jumped ahead by two goals and ultimately won. Ditto for New Jersey after a four day break, who jumped ahead to a 3-1 lead before the Lightning finally woke up and came roaring back. Now, the focus needs to be on starting out of the gate strong, or if that fails, not going down by multiple goals by limiting chances as best as possible.

Luckily tonight the Lightning play the Oilers, so they should have no problem recovering from multi-goal leads.

Bryan Burns with more of this from the Bolts end in his column.

Geo talks about Hall of Famer Denis Savard for the retro profile series this week. While he didn’t go into the Hall as a Bolt, he was the first legend to play for the team. [Raw Charge]

“Today, we get to look at a Hall of Famer, the first Hall of Famer to play for the Tampa Bay Lightning. To be fair, he’s not a Hall of Famer because of his play with the Lightning, but he was the first one to play for the Lightning. That player is Denis Savard. Let’s dive right in.”

And in Solar Bears news, Tracey reports a flat end to a franchise record streak. [Raw Charge]

“An extended homestand continued for the Orlando Solar Bears this week, but the results were anything but home-ice friendly. The team saw a long win streak end, then they managed to earn a split with an intraconference visitor despite just two goals scored. Despite that, the Solar Bears managed to hold on to fourth place in the ECHL’s South Division as the homestretch of the regular season is fast approaching.”

The NHL has decided not to discipline Nathan MacKinnon for his actions from two nights ago. MacKinnon swung his stick and hit a referee after a faceoff. The explanation says MacKinnon was trying to “initiate contact” with the other player instead. That seems like bs to me, because whether it was aimed at the referee or not, it was still a two-handed slash. Less talented players have gotten dinged with a lot less.