A glimpse at the finances
Sure to start a chorus from the "hockey can't survive int eh south" band , the Tampa Bay Lightning opened their books and the St. Petersburg Times and Tampa Tribune both have stories on this today.
The Lightning made 14.1 Million dollars during the two-month playoff run to Lord Stanley's Cup alone. The team posted a 3.6 million dollar profit for the physical year thanks to this. Palace Sports and Entertainment's first profit with the Lightning (and possibly the first profit every posted by the franchise).
Part of the reason he Lightning have opened their books is their continuing plea for help to Hillsborough County and the city of Tampa. The Lightning happen to be one of the most taxed teams in the United States -- which usually hands out sweetheart deals to it's professional sports franchises.
The Lightning need all the financial help they can get as their player-payroll is supposed to balloon (without a work stoppage) from $33 Million Dollars to $49 Million or more this season.