Any doubt regarding just how excited goaltender Anders Lindback is to star in net for the Tampa Bay Lightning, was relieved in a mere 12 hours.
Lindback arrived for the first time in Tampa Bay on Sunday night and had been in town for just 12 hours, yet there he was Monday morning at the Ice Sports Forum in Brandon participating in an informal skate with several of his Lightning teammates.
"I'm a little tired, but more than anything, I'm excited to get going," Lindback said. "It seems like there's a real good bunch of guys here, so today was a good first day, but I think from here it's just going to get better and better."
The helmet of newly acquired Lightning goaltender Anders Lindback
It is believed, in fact, that the same can be said for Lindback himself.
There were times on Monday when the 6-foot-6 native of Sweden showcased his talent with a number of pad saves before making a few more with the glove. He even denied Martin St. Louis a breakaway chance, in which Lindback's stick got a piece of the forward's wrist shot, causing it to sail wide into the glass.
Not a bad debut for a 24-year-old kid whose NHL experience is limited to just 38 games, all with the Nashville Predators.
"We did our research on him before we made the trade to acquire him, so we knew what we were getting," Lightning goaltending coach Frantz Jean said. "He's a big goalie who is very athletic, but quick, and who has good technique. Just from watching him today, I could tell he's in great shape and that he's ready to go."
For that, Lindback has little doubt.
All along he has declared his desire to be a bona fide starting goaltender in the NHL, an opportunity which he felt Tampa Bay could afford him when he was acquired from the Predators on June 15. And, with the additions of both Matt Carle and Sami Salo, the personnel along the revamped Lightning blue line should help Lindback settle in and find success.
"I had a strong summer and I feel good, so right now I'm just looking forward to playing and winning some games," Lindback said. "I understand there are high expectations, but I want to prove myself and help the team in any way I can. My goal is to be the best out there every night."