How Stanley Cup Finalist Lightning were built

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Of the 21 players to appear in at least one Stanley Cup Playoff game this postseason, 19 won the Cup last season. Ten were selected by Tampa Bay in the NHL Draft, seven were acquired via trade and four were signed in free agency.

Here’s how the roster of this Stanley Cup finalist was built, along with background on its coaching staff and general manager:

 

FORWARDS

Anthony Cirelli, C: Selected in the third round (No. 72) of the 2015 NHL Draft, Cirelli scored 22 points (nine goals, 13 assists) in 50 regular-season games and has scored 10 points (four goals, six assists) in 18 playoff games.

Blake Coleman, C: Acquired in a trade with the New Jersey Devils on Feb. 16, 2020 for forward prospect Nolan Foote and a first-round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft, Coleman scored 31 points (14 goals, 17 assists) in 55 regular-season games and has scored seven points (one goal, six assists) in 18 playoff games.

Ross Colton, C: Selected in the fourth round (No. 118) of the 2016 NHL Draft, Colton scored 12 points (nine goals, three assists) in 30 regular-season games and has scored five points (three goals, two assists) in 18 playoff games.

Barclay Goodrow, C: Acquired in a trade with the San Jose Sharks on Feb. 24, 2020 with a third-round pick in the 2020 draft for forward Anthony Greco and a first-round pick in the 2020 draft, Goodrow scored 20 points (six goals, 14 assists) in 55 regular-season games and has scored two points (one goal, one assist) in 13 playoff games.

Yanni Gourde, C: Signed as a free agent March 10, 2014, Gourde scored 36 points (17 goals, 19 assists) in 56 regular-season games and has scored six points (five goals, one assist) in 18 playoff games.

Tyler Johnson, C: Signed as a free agent March 7, 2011, Johnson scored 22 points (eight goals, 14 assists) in 55 regular-season games and has scored three points (two goals, one assist) in 18 playoff games.

Mathieu Joseph, RW: Selected in the fourth round (No. 120) of the 2015 draft, Joseph scored 19 points (12 goals, seven assists) in 56 regular-season games and has no points in two playoff games.

Alex Killorn, LW: Selected in the third round (No. 77) of the 2007 NHL Draft, Killorn scored 33 points (15 goals, 18 assists) in 56 regular-season games and has scored 17 points (eight goals, nine assists) in 18 playoff games.

Nikita Kucherov, RW: Selected in the second round (No. 58) of the 2011 NHL Draft, Kucherov did not play during the regular season after recovering from hip surgery. He leads all scorers in the postseason with 27 points (five goals, 22 assists) in 18 games.

Pat Maroon, LW: Signed as a free agent Aug. 24, 2019, Maroon scored 18 points (four goals, 14 assists) in 55 regular-season games and has scored three points (one goal, two assists) in 18 playoff games.

Ondrej Palat, LW: Selected in the seventh round (No. 208) of the 2011 draft, Palat scored 46 points (15 goals, 31 assists) in 55 regular-season games and has scored nine points (four goals, five assists) in 18 playoff games.

Brayden Point, C: Selected in the third round (No. 79) of the 2014 NHL Draft, Point led the Lightning with 48 points (23 goals, 25 assists) in 56 regular-season games. He has scored 20 points (14 goals, six assists) in 18 playoff games and leads all goal-scorers in the postseason.

Steven Stamkos, C: Selected with the No. 1 pick in the 2008 NHL Draft, Stamkos scored 34 points (17 goals, 17 assists) in 38 regular-season games and has scored 17 points (seven goals, 10 assists) in 18 playoff games.

 

DEFENSEMEN

Erik Cernak: Acquired in a trade with the Los Angeles Kings on Feb. 26, 2017 with goalie Peter Budaj and a seventh-round pick in the 2017 NHL Draft for goalie Ben Bishop and a fifth-round pick in the 2017 draft, Cernak scored 18 points (five goals, 13 assists) in 46 regular-season games and has eight assists in 16 playoff games.

Victor Hedman: Selected with the No. 2 pick in the 2009 NHL Draft, Hedman scored 45 points (nine goals, 36 assists) in 54 regular-season games and has scored 16 points (one goal, 15 assists) in 18 playoff games.

Ryan McDonagh: Acquired in a trade with the New York Rangers on Feb. 26, 2018 with center J.T. Miller for centers Vladislav Namestnikov and Brett Howden, defenseman Libor Hajek, a first-round pick in the 2018 NHL Draft and a second-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft, McDonagh scored 12 points (four goals, eight assists) in 50 regular-season games and has five assists in 18 playoff games.

Jan Rutta: Acquired in a trade with the Chicago Blackhawks on Jan. 11, 2019 with a seventh-round pick in the 2019 draft for defenseman Slater Koekkoek and a fifth-round pick in the 2019 draft, Rutta had eight assists in 35 regular-season games and has scored one goal in 18 playoff games.

David Savard: Acquired in a three-team trade involving the Columbus Blue Jackets and Detroit Red Wings on April 10, Savard scored six points (one goal, five assists) in 54 regular-season games with the Lightning and Blue Jackets and did not score a point in 14 games with Tampa Bay. He has three assists in 15 playoff games.

Luke Schenn: Signed as a free agent July 1, 2019, Schenn scored four points (two goals, two assists) in 38 regular-season games and has scored one goal in eight playoff games.

Mikhail Sergachev: Acquired in a trade with the Montreal Canadiens on June 15, 2017 with a second-round pick in the 2018 draft for forward Jonathan Drouin and a sixth-round pick in the 2018 draft, Sergachev scored 30 points (four goals, 26 assists) in 56 regular-season games and has two assists in 18 playoff games.

 

GOALIES

Andrei Vasilevskiy: Selected with the No. 19 pick in the 2012 NHL Draft, Vasilevskiy was 31-10-1 with a 2.21 goals-against average, .925 save percentage and five shutouts in 42 regular-season games and is a finalist for the Vezina trophy for the fourth straight season. He is 12-6 with a 1.99 GAA, .936 save percentage and four shutouts in 18 playoff games.

Curtis McElhinney: Signed as a free agent July 1, 2019, McElhinney was 4-6-2 with a 3.09 GAA, .875 save percentage and one shutout in 12 regular-season games. He has not played in the postseason.

 

COACHING STAFF

Jon Cooper, coach: Hired on March 25, 2013, to replace Guy Boucher, Cooper is the longest tenured coach in the NHL. He is 384-197-53 in the regular season and 66-45 in the playoffs, having guided the Lightning to the postseason in seven of his eight full NHL seasons. Cooper previously coached Tampa Bay’s American Hockey League affiliate in Norfolk (2010-12) and Syracuse (2012-13).

Jeff Halpern, assistant: Promoted on June 22, 2018, Halpern joined the Lightning in 2015-16 as player development coach and was an assistant with Syracuse of the AHL for two seasons (2016-18).

Derek Lalonde, assistant: Hired on July 12, 2018, Lalonde previously spent two seasons as coach of Iowa of the AHL from 2016-18.

Rob Zettler, assistant: Hired on Dec, 7, 2020, Zettler previously spent two seasons as an assistant with the San Jose Sharks (2017-19) and was coach of Syracuse of the AHL from 2013-16.

Frantz Jean, goaltending coach: Hired on Sept. 7, 2010, Lightning goalies have been Vezina Trophy finalists seven times in his 11 seasons (Andrei Vasilevskiy, 2017-21; Ben Bishop 2014, 2016, 2019).

 

GENERAL MANAGER

Julien BriseBois: Promoted to general manager on Sept. 11, 2018 replacing Steve Yzerman, BriseBois guided the Lightning to an NHL record-tying 62 wins in his first season (2018-19). He previously was assistant GM of the Lightning for eight seasons (2010-18) and spent nine seasons in the Canadiens organization (2001-10).

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