For 13 Tampa Bay Lightning players, Monday proved to be an emotional and long day.
The team shifted around its plans for Day 2 of training camp to accommodate those who flew to Boston on Sunday to attend the funeral of Katie Moore, the wife of former Tampa Bay F Dominic Moore, who died last week from a rare form of liver cancer.
Moore spent almost two seasons with the Lightning before he was traded to San Jose in February. It was while with the Sharks that Katie Moore was diagnosed with the disease the eventually took her life.
"It was definitely very emotional,'' Tampa Bay captain Vinny Lecavalier said. "It's such a great family and I can't say more good things about that guy. I can't even imagine what he's going through right now and the way he presented himself and held himself together, it was incredible.
"I've always had respect for him, but after today and the speech he was giving, it was very, very emotional. He was happy to see us and we were happy to be there to support him.''
The players who attended the funeral flew directly to Fort Myers on team owner Jeff Vinik's private jet and were back in time for Monday's evening practice.
"You are not used to flying and coming onto the ice right away and the coaches put us through a pretty good pace for practice, but I think it was the right thing to do today,'' C Steven Stamkos said. "Everyone understands the reasoning and everyone feels better for that.''
The team spent 45 minutes working on system work as well as physical play along the boards before heading off the ice for a short break.
After the ice was resurfaced, it was time for a scrimmage as the coaching staff wanted not only to evaluate players who are battling for positions, but also put everybody into game situations since there will be no preseason games before Saturday's season opener against Washington.
In the scrimmage, D Radko Gudas and Stamkos notched goals for Team White, but Team Blue came back with goals by Teddy Purcell, Kyle Wilson and Dana Tyrell to pick up the victory.
Overall, coach Guy Boucher was pleased.
"I'm never happy, but it was fun to get some games, and battling and starting to see some game situations,'' he said. "We are going to play. We need the guys in game shape more than putting our systems into place.''
The players were pleased to get back into game situations as well.
"Just more guys in your face, the tempo is a little bit higher than what we are used to with just the coaches,'' Purcell said. "Everybody was a little bit more amped up with some extra adrenaline, so the pace of the game will help us and as the week goes on, we'll try to incorporate more contact and get hit, more game-like situations.''
The Lightning are offering several mini-plan ticket options as well as discounted single-game seats.
There will be 500 seats available for each game at $10 per ticket in the Coca-Cola zone, which includes a free 20-ounce soft drink, located in the terrace level end zone. These seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis starting at 10 a.m. today.
In addition, there is a five-game, select-a-seat pack starting at $99 that includes a special 20th anniversary Lightning hat and a free large Little Caesars pizza. This offer is only available by calling the box office at (813) 301-6600.
The team is also offering a flex plan for Channelside Club, club level or promenade level seating starting at $65 per ticket with a 12-game minimum purchase. Tickets may be used in any combination of locations, games and number of seats throughout the season.
Fans purchasing tickets in the Channelside Club also receive a $50 gift card to the team store located inside The Forum.
Nuts and Bolts
D Evan Oberg was placed on waivers Monday and will find out at noon today if he cleared. Oberg, a frequent call-up last season, has been playing with Tampa Bay's American Hockey League affiliate in Syracuse this season and will be assigned there if he clears. … The deadline to submit rosters to the league is 3 p.m. Friday, while noon Thursday would be the latest a player could go on waivers for the purpose of being assigned to the minors. … The league is offering the NHL Center Ice package to fans for $49.99 for the year, both online and through television providers. There is also a free television preview from Jan. 19-31.