Five Things The Tampa Bay Lightning Need To Do To Get Back On Track

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Oct 8, 2015; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Jason Garrison (5) skates with the puck during the third period at Amalie Arena. Tampa Bay Lightning defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 3-2 in 3-3 overtime. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

2. More Bombs From The Blue Line

This is something that goes entirely hand-in-hand with our previous point about being unpredictable. Most scoring plays come into fruition from right in front of the net, whether it is the approach of a player streaking across the ice on a breakaway or a player who is digging hard for a rebound in front of the net hoping for their opening to give their respective team the advantage.

One thing that not every defenseman is prepared for is a player to get the puck near the blue line and fire off a bomb headed right for the head of the opposing goaltender. This is a place where the Tampa Bay Lightning could use some of their incredible firepower to their advantage.

Allow us to elaborate a little bit for you. In the Tampa Bay Lightning Home Opener, the Bolts took on the Philadelphia Flyers, a hard-hitting team that is well-known for knocking their opponents off the puck and even dropping the gloves on occasion. (Shocker, right?) The Lightning and Flyers would have one period already in the books and neither team would be able to strike first blood.

This is where Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Jason Garrison comes into play.

As you can see, the Tampa Bay Lightning and Philadelphia Flyers were both determined to be the first one to strike. Lightning right wing Ryan Callahan would play the puck into the Flyers’ zone and make his way up the boards towards the net. Unfortunately, there was no clear shot for Callahan as three Flyers quickly made their way into the zone and in the path between Callahan and Flyers goaltender Steve Mason.

Quickly, Callahan turns and sees Lightning defenseman Jason Garrison ready and waiting at the Blue Line. Callahan passes the puck which heads right for Garrison’s stick. Without hesitation, Garrison draws back his stick and fires off the puck, sending it flying right past Mason’s stick side and into the back of the net.

It would not be unreasonable for the Tampa Bay Lightning to take more shots like this from the Blue Line. Something like this would come as second nature for someone like Jason Garrison or a sniper like Steven Stamkos. Adding this kind of shot to their repertoire would only increase the danger a team like the Tampa Bay Lightning presents.

Next: 1. Pass, Pass, Shoot!