Kukla's Korner Hockey

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Since Steve Yzerman Became The GM Of The Tampa Bay Lightning

10/05/2014 at 8:35am EDT

from Erik Erlendsson of the Tampa Tribune,

In the spring of 2010, new Lightning owner Jeff Vinik zeroed in on one name to fill the vacant role of general manager — Steve Yzerman.

After some persistence on Vinik’s part, Yzerman decided the time was right to leave the Red Wings organization — he was a Hall of Fame player with Detroit and worked alongside general manager Ken Holland for three-plus years — and lead the Lightning front office.

Now entering his fifth season with the Lightning, Yzerman has almost completely remade the organizational roster heading into the 2014-15 season.

Gone are Vinny Lecavalier and Marty St. Louis, the last two holdovers from the 2004 Stanley Cup championship team still with the Lightning when Yzerman took over. Other core members when Yzerman took over also have left — Ryan Malone was bought out this summer; Teddy Purcell, Steve Downie and Nate Thompson were traded, and Mike Smith left as a free agent.

In fact, in the entire organization — not counting European-drafted players — there are only seven inherited players still in the system from when Yzerman assumed his role before the 2010-11 season: Steven Stamkos, Victor Hedman, Alex Killorn, Richard Panik, Mark Barberio, Luke Witkowski and goaltender Jaroslav Janus.


added 9:57am, Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times on Steven Stamkos,

Stamkos said he likes the organization's direction, having finished third in the Eastern Conference last season. He couldn't be happier with Yzerman and what he calls an "unbelievable owner" in Jeff Vinik.

Vinik wants Stamkos, under contract the next two years, to finish his career in Tampa Bay. For that, Vinik will have to pay a hefty price when negotiations on an extension can start July 1. The Blackhawks' eight-year, $84 million extensions to star forwards Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews are a good guide.

Stamkos said he can envision being a Lightning lifer.

"My goal is to win, and that's what I want," Stamkos said. "We're on the right path right now. We made a big step last year. I want to be part of that.

"I want to be winning a Stanley Cup with the Tampa Bay Lightning. And hopefully that can happen."


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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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