In one week, the Tampa Bay Lightning will take the ice for real against the Nashville Predators as the Bolts embark on their 2023-24 campaign. As such, training camp is already winding down, as the Lightning have already trimmed their roster and only have a few cuts left to go.
Preseason hockey can be tough to judge as players aren’t skating at full speed just yet, and squads are usually all jumbled up during the opening week of exhibition contests.
But here are four players we here at Bolts by the Bay have had our eye on during the first four preseason games that have stood out thus far for the Lightning.
Tampa Bay Lightning: Honorable Mention
For this list, we are going to list guys that are either new to the squad or some under-the-radar guys.
But there are a couple of the mainstay guys for the Lightning that have looked solid in their limited preseason time.
Victor Hedman logged 24 minutes of ice time on Saturday against the Predators and looked as fresh and as solid as ever. While the Lightning gave up four goals on the night, Hedman was only on the ice for one of them during a 4 v 4 opportunity.
He was also on the ice for two of Tampa’s goals and was credited with an assist. His underlying numbers were great, as during 5 v 5 play, Tampa generated 20 shot attempts with him on the ice while giving up just 12.
Tampa also had an expected goal rate of 68.9% while Hedman was on the ice.
Anthony Cirelli has also looked great in the two games he has played in. Tampa has only given up two high-danger chances in 25 minutes of 5 v 5 ice time, and his individual expected goals so far are 5th best on the squad during the preseason.