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Friday, Aug 17, 2018
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The boys are back in town

The Lightning. Remember those guys? They're back.

The Lightning end a stretch of 19 days without a home game tonight when it plays host to the Canucks.

"It feels odd being back here," coach Jon Cooper said after Wednesday's practice at Amalie Arena.

It was a long practice, complete with competitive drills, as Cooper and his staff tried to work the jetlag out of the boys, who spent the last four games in Central and Western Canada and flew Tuesday back from Edmonton.

"Even with today's practice the guys are still a little leg weary," Cooper said. "Had to get that out of them a little bit today. Hopefully we'll have a little better energized bunch (tonight)."

The Lightning (34-14-3) went 5-3 on the eight-game road trip that was interrupted by the All-Star Break. One of those wins came Saturday in Vancouver, a 4-2 victory against the Canucks (21-26-6).

The Canucks have been in Florida since Monday. They lost at Sunrise Tuesday and flew afterwards to Tampa. Some of the players caught the end of the Lightning's practice. They were scheduled to take the ice after the Lightning.

"They're settled in and we're still kind of adjusting," Cooper said.

The last Lightning home game was Jan. 18 against the Golden Knights. It plays tonight and Saturday against the Kings then it's off for a quick, two-game, back-to-back at Toronto and Buffalo.

"We got to get points out of these home games now," Cooper said. "It's going to be good to play in front of our fans, I tell you that, because it feels like we haven't had anybody cheering for us in a while now."

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