Jan 10, 2012, 12:29 PM EDT
Interesting piece today from the Tampa Bay Times’ Damien Cristodero in which several Lightning players — Martin St. Louis, Dwayne Roloson, Ryan Malone — copped to not working hard, smart or consistently enough this season.
After getting to within a game of the Stanley Cup finals last year, the Lightning admitted to feeling a sense of “entitlement” (St. Louis’ term, not mine) that’s resulted in an inattention to detail and inconsistent effort.
Hearing his players admit this publicly pleased head coach Guy Boucher.
“It’s like Alcoholics Anonymous,” he told the Times. “Until you say that you’re an alcoholic you can’t make the steps.
“Players maybe felt a sense of entitlement, so it’s good it’s internalized. Before they were being told but it wasn’t internalized. Now they realize where they are.”
Where they are is buried in the Eastern Conference standings. Tampa sits 13th with 37 points, nine back of eighth-place Pittsburgh for the final playoff spot. While nine points isn’t insurmountable, Tampa’s real issue is the number of teams they’ll have to leapfrog: Montreal, Buffalo, Washington and Winnipeg, the latter playing some solid hockey as of late (the Jets are 6-3-1 over their last 10 and have the third-best home record in the East.)
Despite this, St. Louis said the team is still optimistic about its chances of making the postseason.
“All the guys who had success last year are still here,” he said. “We lost a few guys but we still have some key guys here who got it done.
“We’ve got to get on a long run pretty quick.”
- As Bolts deal with illness, extra day of rest could prove beneficial 2
- Sounds like it’s Rundblad, not TVR, in for Chicago on defense 10
- On Kreider, and trying ‘to turn the other cheek’ 30
- Report: Sharks to name DeBoer head coach 12
- Video: Lundqvist helps lead Rangers back to New York for Game 7 5
- Lightning get taken to ‘school of hard knocks’ in third-period collapse 11
- A storm brewing: Rangers rally to force Game 7 with Lightning (Video) 11
- Video: Lundqvist stones Stamkos with left-pad save 0
- Bob Clarke really doesn’t care for tanking 37
- Hitchcock re-signs for one more year in St. Louis 10
- Reports: Sabres thought they had a deal with Babcock, aren’t happy (174)
- Leafs land Babcock with reported 8-year deal, estimated at $50 million (130)
- Kesler on wearing down Chicago: ‘No human can withstand that many hits’ (75)
- What’s wrong with Lundqvist? (70)
- From healthy scratch to hero: Vermette scores OT winner for Blackhawks (66)