Tampa Bay Lightning Logo – Tampa Bay Lightning is a professional American of ice hockey, located in the city of Tampa (Florida). Opened in 1992, this team has to his credit with a Stanley Cup in 2003-04 gained. He currently plays in the National Hockey League, framed in the Southeast Division.
The origin of the franchise goes back to late 1980, when the NHL announced a further expansion of the championship to new franchises. An investment group based in the city of Tampa led by former players Phil Esposito and his brother Tony, who had the financial backing of a Japanese consortium led by the company Kokusai Green, got one of the two franchises available to start play from the 1992-93 season (the other was Ottawa Senators). In the early years stood Phil Esposito as president and CEO, while his brother Tony Esposito became a scout, while the first coach hired to lead the team was Terry Crisp, former coach of the Calgary Flames.
Tampa Bay’s debut was on October 7 of 1992 with a win over Chicago Blackhawks by 7 goals to 3, and the club began the season a surprising lead in the first month of its Conference competiicón. However, his streak was affected and the Lightning finished last season with a record of 53 points, one of the best shown by an expansion team in its first season. They also noted the interventions of several players like Brian Bradley, with 42 goals. During its first four years the team failed to qualify for the playoffs. The debut of Lightning in the playoffs came in the 1995-96 season with a team led by Bradley, Alexander Selivanov and Roman Hamrlik. That year the team provided a good sense of play and, despite falling to the first hurdle in the finals, managed to convince the fans that filled the stadium. One of the games against the Philadelphia Flyers in the Thunderdome was home to 28,183 spectators, the largest number in an NHL game that was not surpassed until 2003 in Edmonton.