Tampa Bay Lightning: Early Season Schedule Will Test Bolts Acquisitions

July 21st, 2012 by Eric Steitz Leave a reply »
The Tampa Bay Lightning have addressed some of their most glaring weaknesses from the 2011-12 season by adding goaltending and defensive depth. The questions that plagued the Bolts this offseason now appear to have answers. But just how solid are those answers? The Bolts will find out early in the 2012-13 campaign.

Tampa Bay starts its season on Oct. 13 against in-state rival Florida Panthers. The Panthers are the defending Southeast Division champions and a team that pushed the New Jersey Devils to seven games in the opening round of last season's playoffs.

The Bolts then come home for three games, starting with the home opener against the New York Islanders. After the Isles, the Panthers come to Tampa, followed by the Eastern Conference regular season champion New York Rangers.

Four games, three against playoff teams from last season.

Tampa then goes on its Canadian road trip against the Flames, Oilers and Canucks. The Flames should have been a playoff team in 2012, the Oilers get better with every year of experience for that young group and the Canucks won the Presidents' trophy.

A six-game homestand welcomes the Bo ...

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