TAMPA BAY, Fla. (FNN SPORTS) – Although our Florida National News fans voted in the game day poll for a Tampa Bay Lightning win, Carolina topped Tampa Bay 3-0. The Hurricanes came out in the first period with an early and successful shot on goal by Max McCormick, which set the tone for the game. The Lightning struggled and beat themselves in the six penalties they racked up.
The six penalties cast an even larger shadow on tonight’s match-up, given Coach Jon Cooper’s assertion that penalties were a highly emphasized situation in training camp. One Lightning player that didn’t disappoint with penalty situations was Mitchell Stephens. Coach Cooper said that Stephens was on the puck quite a bit. When asked about the penalty kills in the locker room, Stephens said, “I worked on face offs a lot this offseason,” and it showed.
Lightning forward Danick Martel had a similar response about the penalties and the need to correct them moving forward, but for his own performance in the game, Martel said, “I just need to skate harder, even if I mess up, I got to get up a skate.” It’s just game one of the preseason and the team faces the Hurricanes again tomorrow night in Carolina with a chance to build off tonight’s lessons.
Kasey Hudson is a Florida National News sports contributor. | firstname.lastname@example.org