The Lightning are coming off a double loss versus the Hurricanes this week, so the team will be fighting for their first pre-season game win tonight versus the Nashville Predators back in Amelie Arena. The pressure is on for Lightning players as head coach, Jon Cooper says, “the bottom line is there are spots open on this team, probably more than there have ever been before”. At this point Cooper is evaluating to see what players will not only fit his system but bring something to this Lightning team. Although it Is just pre-season, the bigger issue is the zero goals in two games. Which will heat up the competition for the forward positions.
Mitchell Stephens has been a solid player in Tampa’s pre-season thus far, showing reliability in penalty situations game 1 being a plus. Wednesday night’s game 2 versus the Carolina Hurricanes, there were still unfortunate penalties, but the Bolts were 5 for 5 in penalty kills. Another stand out player in the pre-season is J. Huntington, Huntington is said to potentially be another undrafted free agent that can have a breakout career with the Lightning. Huntington said in a recent interview, “I see my role as a two-way forward, playing defense and offense”, something that can contribute to this Bolts team, as well as the physicality Huntington can bring as well. Heading into tonight’s match up with the Nashville Predators, the Lightning will hopefully minimize penalties and land their first goal. We will see tonight which forward will get the job done.
Puck drops at 7pm tonight, stay updated with Florida National News!