**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
Returning: Dwayne Roloson
Arrivals: Mathieu Garon
Departures: Mike Smith
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.
Returning: Victor Hedman, Eric Brewer, Pavel Kubina, Mattias Ohlund, Brett Clark, Marc-Andre Bergeron
Arrivals: Matt Gilroy, Bruno Gervais
Departures: Mike Lundin, Randy Jones
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.
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”.
OVERALL RATING: -2
2011-12 Prediction: #6-#7 in Eastern Conference
About the Author
Written by Corey Krakower
I am the Director of NHL Content & Habs writer for ProSportsBlogging.com; I have spent 8 seasons behind the bench as a minor hockey coach; and I am the future GM of the Montreal Canadiens (according to my mom). I spend my days managing the Harrow Sports brand in my hometown of Montreal and I moonlight as a Hockey Advisor for Pi Athlete Management. Most importantly, I'll throw anyone under the bus for a laugh.