The Tampa Bay Lightning, captained by Steven Stamkos, have missed some very critical members of their roster at times this season. Brayden Point missed 14 games, Nikita Kucherov missed 32, and Erik Cernak has also missed some time.
Every team is going to have injury problems during a season, but the Lightning always seem to have a number of players out of the lineup for extender periods of time. Yet they keep winning.
While some might get frustrated with how they are able to take advantage of their situation with the salary cap, I think the thing more people should focus on is the way they always continue to dominate while missing so many critical pieces of their team.
One of the big reasons the Tampa Bay Lightning are in a good position within their division and have a 23-9-5 record is because of their captain Steven Stamkos. Stamkos played in 38 games last year, and 57 the year before. During the team’s 2020 playoff run he only got in one game, he scored one heck of a goal during that game but still.
Stamkos hasn’t really been the Lightning’s top guy in Tampa for a while. The past few years it has been Point or Kucherov really leading the charge offensively, but this season he is totally rewriting his career as he leads the team in points and has helped the group find success even without so many key players in the lineup at once.
The Lightning are now back to full strength for the most part. There are going to be more injuries as the season goes on, but the fact they are one of the top team’s in the league and have made it this far is a testimony to the Lightning’s captain and the roster in the room for not giving up and throwing in the towel after so much success the past few years to rest on.
Tampa definitely cannot be overlooked when it comes to winning another championship. They might not have the same roster they had last year or the year before, but that group just won’t quit.