Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 03/19/14 at 03:20 PM ET
from Tim Wharnsby of CBC,
There was concern that because Tampa Bay general manager Steve Yzerman was forced into the trade, thanks to the demands of the 38-year-old St. Louis, the Lightning would slip out of the playoff race.
Who was going to guide the team? Who was going to set up the game's top sniper, Steven Stamkos, when he returned from a 45-game absence because of a broken leg?
Well, so far, so good. Robust two-way forward Ryan Callahan arrived in the trade that sent St. Louis to the New York Rangers. Stamkos has returned from his injury. And Tampa Bay hasn't missed a beat, going 3-1-2 since the Mar. 5 trade deadline after a 22-18-5 record previously without Stamkos.
"We lost Stammer for a long time and we still managed to play well enough," said Lightning centre Valtteri Filppula, whose club visits the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday. "We were able to survive that. Yes, we lost a player like Marty, but we got a pretty good player in return."
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