After the Lightning were swept in the first round of the NHL playoffs, head coach Jon Cooper joined Booger and Rich to discuss the season as a whole and what moves fans can expect this offseason.
Cooper told us that if he could put his finger on one major issue in their playoff series against Montreal, it would the be injuries. Cooper said the injuries, especially Ben Bishop’s, caught up to them. He also said that their mental toughness could only get them so far in the playoffs and they were lacking size. In the end, the Bolts just couldn’t keep pucks out of the net.
When asked about Marty St. Louis being a distraction, Cooper admitted that he was after the Olympics. He said St. Louis continued to play hard for the team, but player’s noticed a change in his attitude. Despite trading their captain, Cooper said it was the right move. St. Louis was bound to decline and Cooper said he just didn’t know if the Lightning were going to be a fit for him.
As far as offseason moves, Cooper said that he does hope the team resigns Ryan Callahan but he knows that the former New York Ranger is in a great position to test the free agent market.
In the end, Cooper said he was happy with his team and thinks that they helped re-energize hockey fans in Tampa Bay.