After losing 6-2 3-2 in the Eastern Conference final against the New York Rangers, John Cooper’s team showed great signs of maturity on the mental map, in this collective victory over the individual.
Lightning made the sacrifices needed from within to get into the winner’s circle, winning their last four games after losing 0-2 against the team led by Gerard Gallant.
By choosing to prioritize the words “discipline,” “team effort” and “two-way commitment” as the series progresses, Lightning has identified the opponent with just five small goals scored in the last four games. This is the perfect example of the great desire to have this locker room to be a part of the Stanley Cup Grand Final for the third year in a row and defend the title that has been won over the past two seasons.
The strength of the character and the “buy” from the four corners of the locker room are clearly visible in this serious test of adversity imposed on them by some opponents since the beginning of the current series. Given that Lightning is the enemy to be overcome due to the defensive championship in the past two seasons, the will of the other teams has been great.
Instead of panicking on the inside as Barclay Goudreau (to Rangers), Blake Coleman (to Calgary) and Yanni Jord leave (to Seattle), 3e The trio that contributed significantly to the successes of forming Saint Petersburg (Florida) in 2020-2021, senior leaders simply refocused on organizational culture and tied themselves up in the difficulties of the moment.
They had to make choices in this quest for the missing links, a matter of adding a good supplement to graft this core of players who demanded nothing less than winning a third consecutive championship.
Senior management, expertly led by General Manager Julien BriseBois, has demonstrated unwavering confidence in its group of veterans. Nevertheless, I decided to proceed with a few movements of employees on the transaction deadline, but without exaggeration, by assigning increased roles and responsibilities to certain internal employees, developed within the organization itself, to properly balance the state of forces.
Acquisitions and promotions on Insider Trade deadlines surely provided Tampa Bay Lightning with the much-desired idea of depth for a team aspiring to the highest honors.
Pure wisdom, without taking away from the core identity of the team, even if the increasingly older formation has lost some speed over time. In Tampa Bay, we play more responsible hockey with and without the puck.
The team, led by John Cooper and his hockey crew, with the greatest tact, brilliantly coped with various critical moments. This team inspires the most confidence in moments of high heat, and adversity seems to fuel it.
This victory over the New York Rangers is reminiscent of the series against the Boston Bruins in August 2020 (Covid-19 period), when the Lightning trailed 0-1 in the series to then allow only seven small goals for the opponent in the last four. Serial encounters to win in the end.
Lightning feature in the final
Players in this franchise have long understood the principle that “offense wins matches, but defense wins championships.” An old adage that always seems to serve well.
We must admit that such a well-balanced team shows signs of a group on a mission, full of confidence and strength of character, releasing a sense of security in the face of moments of great difficulty and adversity.
Will that be enough for Lightning to take advantage of their next opponent, the mighty Colorado Avalanche? This has not yet been confirmed.
One thing is for sure, we will have a duel that promises to be one of the most exciting between the champions of the present (Lightning) and those who inevitably appear on the horizon in pursuit of becoming the next force of the NHL (Avalanche).
Colorado Avalanche: Go forward and thirst for victory!
Let’s make one thing clear from the start: there is no prospect that can compare to being a goalkeeper. Tampa Lightning has a clear advantage in the nets with Andrei Vasilevskiy, without taking anything away from the duo of Darcy Comber and Pavel Francoz. It’s a pesky grain of sand in the avalanche arena.
On the other hand, the management at Colorado Avalanche, led by general manager Joe Sakic, has shown patience over the past few seasons in Department 101 and in the process to achieve a maturity formation aspiring to the greats.
Fallout Nashville Predators and St. Louis Blues and Edmonton Oilers Since the beginning of the current series, Colorado has been shaped by the potential to emerge as a serious contender for the top spot.
Jared Bednar’s squad has made some very good additions both in the recent period of transactions and in recent years, which has had the effect of boosting the confidence and progress of this group.
Having suffered eliminations in the second round of the playoffs in the last two campaigns (against Dallas in 2020 and against Vegas in 2021), Avalanche has had to face that ordeal for the time being, which very likely is a great learning to bounce back better. Above all, learn what it takes to win.
A harsh reality has necessarily led to a more critical view of the inside, both on an individual level and on organizational orientations. A fundamental question in wanting to reach the end goal is the question of what can be improved.
Today, the Colorado Avalanche appears in their best clothes. Leadership, depth (despite losing my destiny) and balance between skilled players and players evolving in very specific roles, is a matter of power state distribution. We see a formation full of talent.
Colorado benefited from a ten-day period or less remaining after its quick win over the Edmonton Oilers, and could have a certain important advantage in the Stanley Cup Final.
In closing, we will see a final pitting on one side of the Tampa Bay Lightning on a mission, who present themselves as defensive champions with a strong intent to repeat the successes of the past two seasons, and on the other, the Colorado Avalanche’s most talented team, drooling with a goal of winning the Holy Cup and thus End the era of discount.
Good final everyone!
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