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Tampa is sitting at 31-10-3 looking like a shoe in for the Presidents trophy, looking like the favorite in the Eastern Conference and probably the favorite for the Stanley Cup. Stamkos has been healthy, Vasilevskiy has been better than advertised, Kucherov looks like a Hart Trophy winner, Hedman looks as if he could win the Norris, Point, the rest, wow what a team. Looks like smooth sailing. And then last night....

 

  He seemed to pull up a bit before checking the Flames Garnet Hathaway of the Flames and they had a weird little knee on knee hit that didn't look like much at first but looking closer you can see Hedman's knee buckle. He barely made it to the bench and was helped to the runway. He didn't return, the Lightning said more will be known today.

"Obviously, when a guy can’t really put a weight on his leg and doesn’t come back, especially (Hedman), who battles through a lot of stuff, it didn’t look very good," captain Steven Stamkos said. "Obviously we’re hoping and praying for the best news. We’ll have to wait and see."

 

  If the Bolts have an Achilles heal it is on the blueline where Hedman plays major minutes in all situations and the rest of the blueline while capable is rather pedestrian in many ways. Castoffs of other organizations such as Girardi, Stralman and Coburn are being utilized very well but have limited upside, if Hedman is out for an extended period of time or even the rest of the year the burden of pushing the puck and playing big minutes from the back end will fall on rookie Mikhael Sergachev who after a hot start has went nearly a month (12 games) without a goal and is down to 15 minutes most nights playing third pairing/second power play unit minutes. Hedman is arguably their least replaceable skater and among the best players in the game not only at his position but among al l players. 

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6 hours ago, yave1964 said:

Tampa is sitting at 31-10-3 looking like a shoe in for the Presidents trophy

 

Is that a reward or a curse?

 

In the last 32 years only 8 president trophy winning teams have won the Cup. 

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I'm not TOO worried just yet... I mean we got plenty of room in the standings for one & 2, I think this is just a little fluke.

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3-6 weeks, the Bolts say he should be back for the playoffs. Looks like they dodged a bullet.

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Losing a player the caliber of Victor Hedman is NEVER a good thing.... but if there was ever a situation where losing a star defenseman was "timed just right", this might be it.

 

Bolts will start their bye week, followed closely by the All Star Break.... analysts were saying the total number of scheduled games Hedman could miss may only be about 10-12  total when you factor in the bye, breaks, and the TB schedule.

 

This means the Bolts will need to fill his minutes by committee.

They have NO ONE who can take Hedman's place by themselves, but if they play a strong team defense, they have players good enough, so that the impact of his loss will, at the very least, be softened a bit.

 

Having Dan Girardi out too (he isn't expected to be out too much longer) stings a bit more on the Hedman front as well.........ahh, but there again is the bye week to help out. Again...NOT a good thing to lose established vets and star players, but if you must, these breaks sure are helpful.

 

The Lightning have also built up that real big lead, and if they can even just tread water, they will lose some of that lead, but should be healthy in time to continue to maintain it.

 

Stralman, Sergachev, Coburn, Dotchin, Sustr, Koekkoek, and Girardi when he gets back.

That's 7 NHL defensemen who will have to step up their games in Hedman's absence.

Not ideal, but doable.

 

TB also has one or two guys from Syracuse who can get called up as well if it comes to that (thinking Ben Thomas, Dominik Masin, Mat Bodie, or even Matt Spencer) plus, they do have some cap room, could always pry away some low cost, middling type defender from another team, again, if need be.

 

Bolts have been pretty fortunate to this point regarding man games lost to injury. This would be their first big one this season.

I think it's time to test these guys and see if they really can live up to that "Stanley Cup Favorite" moniker.

Real Stanley Cup champions can, after all, stand up to losing a good player here and there by having depth and other guys add up to a bit more than the sum of their parts

 

So here we are, Tampa Bay.

 

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14 hours ago, TropicalFruitGirl26 said:

Losing a player the caliber of Victor Hedman is NEVER a good thing.... but if there was ever a situation where losing a star defenseman was "timed just right", this might be it.

 

Bolts will start their bye week, followed closely by the All Star Break.... analysts were saying the total number of scheduled games Hedman could miss may only be about 10-12  total when you factor in the bye, breaks, and the TB schedule.

 

This means the Bolts will need to fill his minutes by committee.

They have NO ONE who can take Hedman's place by themselves, but if they play a strong team defense, they have players good enough, so that the impact of his loss will, at the very least, be softened a bit.

 

Having Dan Girardi out too (he isn't expected to be out too much longer) stings a bit more on the Hedman front as well.........ahh, but there again is the bye week to help out. Again...NOT a good thing to lose established vets and star players, but if you must, these breaks sure are helpful.

 

The Lightning have also built up that real big lead, and if they can even just tread water, they will lose some of that lead, but should be healthy in time to continue to maintain it.

 

Stralman, Sergachev, Coburn, Dotchin, Sustr, Koekkoek, and Girardi when he gets back.

That's 7 NHL defensemen who will have to step up their games in Hedman's absence.

Not ideal, but doable.

 

TB also has one or two guys from Syracuse who can get called up as well if it comes to that (thinking Ben Thomas, Dominik Masin, Mat Bodie, or even Matt Spencer) plus, they do have some cap room, could always pry away some low cost, middling type defender from another team, again, if need be.

 

Bolts have been pretty fortunate to this point regarding man games lost to injury. This would be their first big one this season.

I think it's time to test these guys and see if they really can live up to that "Stanley Cup Favorite" moniker.

Real Stanley Cup champions can, after all, stand up to losing a good player here and there by having depth and other guys add up to a bit more than the sum of their parts

 

So here we are, Tampa Bay.

 

I understand the significant Blow  to us as our top Defenseman is injured and out for 3-6 weeks but, I still believe this team can still step up to the challenge & rise to the occasion.

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    • 1
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      Is that a reward or a curse?   In the last 32 years only 8 president trophy winning teams have won the Cup. 
    • 1
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      I'm not TOO worried just yet... I mean we got plenty of room in the standings for one & 2, I think this is just a little fluke.
    • 1
      Post
      Losing a player the caliber of Victor Hedman is NEVER a good thing.... but if there was ever a situation where losing a star defenseman was "timed just right", this might be it.   Bolts will start their bye week, followed closely by the All Star Break.... analysts were saying the total number of scheduled games Hedman could miss may only be about 10-12  total when you factor in the bye, breaks, and the TB schedule.   This means the Bolts will need to fill his minutes by committee. They have NO ONE who can take Hedman's place by themselves, but if they play a strong team defense, they have players good enough, so that the impact of his loss will, at the very least, be softened a bit.   Having Dan Girardi out too (he isn't expected to be out too much longer) stings a bit more on the Hedman front as well.........ahh, but there again is the bye week to help out. Again...NOT a good thing to lose established vets and star players, but if you must, these breaks sure are helpful.   The Lightning have also built up that real big lead, and if they can even just tread water, they will lose some of that lead, but should be healthy in time to continue to maintain it.   Stralman, Sergachev, Coburn, Dotchin, Sustr, Koekkoek, and Girardi when he gets back. That's 7 NHL defensemen who will have to step up their games in Hedman's absence. Not ideal, but doable.   TB also has one or two guys from Syracuse who can get called up as well if it comes to that (thinking Ben Thomas, Dominik Masin, Mat Bodie, or even Matt Spencer) plus, they do have some cap room, could always pry away some low cost, middling type defender from another team, again, if need be.   Bolts have been pretty fortunate to this point regarding man games lost to injury. This would be their first big one this season. I think it's time to test these guys and see if they really can live up to that "Stanley Cup Favorite" moniker. Real Stanley Cup champions can, after all, stand up to losing a good player here and there by having depth and other guys add up to a bit more than the sum of their parts   So here we are, Tampa Bay.  
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