Exclusive Lightning coverage by Gary Shelton Sports

Lightning risks it all to begin its playoff run

April 10, 2019 general

Tuesday, 4 a.m. The safest thing, of course, would be to call the league offices and tell them no one around here is interested in the NHL playoffs. The safest thing would be to sit back and count the statistics. The three 40-goal scorers. The 39-wins by the goaltender. The wins. The comebacks. The consistency. […]

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Bolts finish with a bang with comeback over Bruins

April 7, 2019 general

Sunday, 4 a.m. Take a minute. Smile. Let the season pour over you. True, there is bigger game to be hunted. But don’t think about that right now. Think of your Tampa Bay Lightning celebrating once again. Seize the moment. Celebrate. The Lightning wrapped up their sweetest regular season Saturday. Another win. Another comeback. Another […]

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Bolts beat Toronto as regular season winds down

April 5, 2019 general

Friday, 4 a.m. From here, there is failure and there is success. There is no middle ground. From here, the Tampa Bay Lightning lifts the Stanley Cup. Or it drops a trophy on its toes. The regular season is all but gone now, and the resume gets better and better. Which means the Lightning makes […]

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Bolts lose to Montreal as regular season nears end

April 3, 2019 general

Wednesday, 3 a.m. In 80 games, they have lost just 16 times. Still, every loss smells like trouble, doesn’t it? The Lightning, with little to play for but the record book, lost a 4-2 decision to a Montreal team that is playing for a wild-card spot. The Canadiens pulled into a tie for the second […]

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Lightning wins 60th game of the season

April 2, 2019 general

Tuesday, 4 a.m. Evidently, the Tampa Bay Lightning isn’t finished with its regular season yet. At a time when the Bolts should be preparing for the post-season, it fattened its record a bit more Monday night in Ottawa. The Lightning won, 5-2, for its 60th win of the season. Only two other teams in the […]

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Sluggish Bolts lose to Caps, Ovechkin

March 31, 2019 general

Sunday, 4 a.m. Perhaps this is why Lightning coach Jon Cooper is so reluctant to give his players too much time off. They don’t respond well to rest, it appears. Following a four-day break, the Bolts had a rare stumble Saturday night, losing their final regular-season home game, 6-3. The Bolts fell behind 4-0. Two […]

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Is Cooper the best-ever coach of the Lightning?

March 27, 2019 general

Wednesday, 4 a.m. At the time of his hiring, Terry Crisp was the perfect coach. He was patient, and he was smart, and he was a great way for a new coach to say hello. But Jon Cooper is better. When he came aboard, Guy Boucher was a good idea. He thought outside the box […]

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Bolts rally to beat Bruins in historic season

March 26, 2019 general

Tuesday, 4 a.m. Are you tired of the record book lately? Are you weary of the assault on excellence by the Tampa Bay Lightning? Are you fatigued from reading, night after night, about the team or different players measuring up to the greats of the league? Well, no. Of course you aren’t. Once again, the […]

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Looking for a reason to believe in the Lightning?

March 25, 2019 general

Monday, 4 a.m. They have come close, but they have not come close enough. They have been near enough to the finish to sell tickets, but it has not been good enough. They have dwarfed much of the NHL, but in the end, they have not been big enough. Still, there are reasons to believe […]

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Lightning singing the Blues as streak stopped

March 24, 2019 general

Sunday, 4 a.m. As it turns out, the players of the  Tampa Bay Lightning are mortal, after all. The Lightning finally lost another game Saturday night, falling 4-3 to the St. Louis Blues. It was just the team’s 14th loss of the season, and it ended a seven-game winning streak. The Bolts fell behind 3-0 […]

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