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Plus/Minus – Grading the Tampa Bay Lightning Offseason

Posted By Corey Krakower On Jul 22 2011 @ 10:44 am In Tampa Bay Lightning | No Comments

**Rating system for “Plus/Minus” Series**</em
+3 = Major Upgrade
+2 = Upgrade
+1 = Slight Upgrade
0 = Same as prior year
-1 = Slight Dowgrade
-2 = Downgrade
-3 = Major Downgrade

Team: Tampa Bay Lightning
2010-11: 103 points, #5 in Eastern Conference

GOALIES

Returning: Dwayne Roloson

Arrivals: Mathieu Garon
Departures: Mike Smith

Grade: 0

The important thing is that they have Roloson back. While I think Smith is better than Garon, it is not enough of a difference to warrant calling this a downgrade.

DEFENSE

Returning: Victor Hedman, Eric Brewer, Pavel Kubina, Mattias Ohlund, Brett Clark, Marc-Andre Bergeron

Arrivals: Matt Gilroy, Bruno Gervais
Departures: Mike Lundin, Randy Jones

Grade: 0

Like the goaltenders, this is also an even trade. The Lightning rid of themselves of 2 defensive defensemen and replaced them with 2 guys who bring a little more offense and a little less defense to the party.

FORWARDS

Returning: Steven Stamkos, Vincent Lecavalier, Martin St. Louis, Ryan Malone, Steve Downie, Ted Purcell, Dominic Moore, Nate Thompson, Adam Hall, Dana Tyrell, Blair Jones

Arrivals: Ryan Shannon
Departures: Simon Gagne, Sean Bergenheim

The loss of Gagne and Bergenheim to free agency certainly hurts a lot. Despite a -2 rating, I caution Lightning fans not to be too concerned. Ryan Shannon could replace 15 of Gagne’s 17 goals, and top prospect Carter Ashton could bring the same style of play as Bergenheim provided he makes the team. The problem is there are too many “ifs” and “maybes”.

Grade: -2

OVERALL RATING: -2
2011-12 Prediction: #6-#7 in Eastern Conference

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