Steve Yzerman is bringing back a proven formula to the Tampa Bay Lightning: defense and patience.
The opportunity for Tampa Bay to build upon its trip to the Eastern Conference Finals two seasons ago has disappeared, well, like a flash of lightning.
Entering their 21st season, the Bolts are all but scrapping their identity of being one of the league's most dynamic offenses as numbers reflect the desperate need for change. In the two seasons since making the postseason, Tampa Bay surrendered more goals than it could produce -- an average of three per game.
Yzerman knows firsthand about the importance of protecting one's end as well as integrating talent slowly. It is a model that has resulted in the Detroit Red Wings -- the squad he captained for 20 years -- making 22 straight postseason appearances, earning six trips to the Stanley Cup finals and winning four championships since 1990.
Jon Cooper, promoted to head coach last season after back-to-back efforts in which his American...