That’s how the headline on the front page of the Tampa Bay Times reads today, “Lights Out”. A reference to the area professional hockey team, Tampa Bay Lightning, losing game six and the best-of-seven series for one of the greatest trophies in sport – the Stanley Cup. It takes 16 wins once the playoffs start to claim the cup and have your name engraved on it forever as a champion. It is not easy and often referred to as a dream for some and a fantasy of most.
The Tampa Bay Lightning won 14 of those games, not good enough for the Cup, but for this Lightning fan, good enough to be proud. I say that as someone who has watched this team over the years, the wins, the losses, the questionable trades and all the changes, good or bad. One such memory that has stood out occurred on November 11, 2013, when Steven Stamkos broke his leg during a game against Boston (YouTube video link).
His reaction, his fist pounding the ice, has stayed with me. There’s just something about his reaction, his knowing he was hurt and unable to play, you could see and feel the frustration, but somehow you knew, it was not the end of Steven Stamkos. Through determination and will, Steven Stamkos came back and a year later, captained a team to the Stanley Cup playoffs.
“When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hang on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.” – Harriet Beecher Stowe.
Personally, I feel as though Steven Stamkos is just getting started. True, the Lightning did not win the Stanley Cup this year, but it wasn’t for lack of trying. And it’s the trying that I’m proud of and that I’ll remember. The amazing scoring chances, the penalty kills and the determination that will carry this young team into the next season, and the next, to try and try again for Lord Stanley’s Cup.
So, were you thinking this was going to be a blog just about hockey? It isn’t.
Also on the front page of the Tampa Bay Times today is this headline: “Threat of Amendment 1 lawsuit“.
You think it’s over? I say we keep trying.
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