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It's never a good sign when there are traffic cones on the ice when the players come out for practice. That's what the Lightning were greeted by at 8 a.m. this morning at the St. Pete Times Forum, and when they were done skating at 8:46 the ice was covered in a thick layer of snow. Laps, laps and more laps were the focus of the session, which was bumped up by four hours following last night’s 3-0 loss against Colorado.
Following practice the team retreated into the locker room for a lengthy video session. Tomorrow will be another practice day, with the Bolts leaving at 1:30 for the first trip to Pittsburgh of the season.
Marty St. Louis was absent from the proceedings so he could be with his wife, Heather, for the birth of the couple's third child.
“We have to try to get to a confident level as a hockey team,” was the line from head coach John Tortorella Tuesday morning before the Colorado game. There were some bright signs heading into last night’s match-up, including a mostly dominant performance at Florida Saturday night and a two-game road winning streak. Most felt like the team was almost over the hump and ready to make a run, which makes last night’s result all the more confounding.
The first period was a “feeling out” time for both teams and didn’t contain much flow or too many scoring chances in either end. Colorado stepped up its level in the second period and took over the game with a pair of goals, while the Lightning struggled to get control of the puck away from the Avs. In the third period Tampa Bay was absolutely dominant, but simply couldn’t solve Jose Theodore.