Tampa Bay Lightning looking for another playoff berth in 2018-2019 season

The Lightning are hoping to repeat their success from last season and make the playoffs

The Tampa Bay Lightning are  ready for the remainder of the 2018-2019 season.

The Tampa Bay Lightning are ready for the remainder of the 2018-2019 season.

Jack Kirk, Staff Writer

Last season, the Tampa Bay Lightning had a very successful season as they were the number one seed in the Eastern conference and made to the Eastern Conference Finals, losing the series 4-3 to the Washington Capitals. Going into this season, the Lightning kept their core players and are eyeing another trip to the playoffs, with hopes for a deeper run than last year.

Entering the off season, the Lightning had very limited salary cap space to pick up new players and had to be conservative in who they signed. Lightning General Manager Steve Yzerman kept on the core of the team, including team captain forward Steven Stamkos, top-five goaltender Andrei Vasilievskiy, and Norris trophy winner Victor Hedman.

Other than maintaining the players who pushed them so far into the playoffs last season, the Lightning did not make any waves in free agency or trading, hoping their current players can get the job done.

Steven Stamkos, who has been team captain since 2014, was a large component of the team’s success last season as he was second on the team in points scored and was a great leader who helped with the chemistry and production of the whole team. Stamkos currently has 13 points, which is fourth on the team.

The Lightning also brought back Nikita Kucherov, who lead the team in goals and assists last season. Kucherov is currently tied for second in points scored on the team, keeping up from last year and aiding in the wins thus far.

The Lightning currently stand at 8-2-1 and five of their eight wins have been by two goals or more. They are the first place team in both their division and conference, and have the second-most points in the NHL with 17 points, only behind the Nashville Predators with 18.

As the season continues, the Lightning will attempt continue playing to their strengths in hopes of another playoff berth and top seed in the East. And the Lightning will do so by feeding off the thunder of the fans.