||Let tampabaylightning.com become your destination for all the latest Lightning scoops. The Lightning Insider will be in the stands, in the locker room and on the road with the team throughout the 2007-08 season to provide you with a positive look at the Bolts as they pursue Lord Stanley’s hardware. Our resident snoop will post the latest following practices and morning skates, and he’ll make sure you’re the first to know when the Lightning are making news. Have a question or comment for The Insider? Send me an email at Insider@tampabaylightning.com
Mandatory skate for the Lightning this morning after Friday's practice was canceled. The team didn't land until 2:10 a.m. Friday, so the rest was probably needed yesterday.
The best sight on the ice this morning was Lightning captain Tim Taylor on the ice with his teammates for the first time this season. Though he donned a white jersey instead of the usual dark blue the forwards wear during a morning skate, it was great to see Taylor out there after his major hip resurfacing surgery early this season.
“I’ve been in the league 15 years, and this was the first time I’ve been nervous before a practice, except for maybe when I was a rookie in Detroit,” Taylor said. “Right now I’m just practicing with the guys and having fun.”
Asked if he planned to try to get in a game before the end of the season, Taylor wouldn’t commit.
“Today was the best I've felt in seven years since my groin surgery,” he said. “I got the surgery to feel better for the rest of my life. Do I want to risk it to play 1 or 2 games?”
Mike Smith will get the call in net once again, following up his strong performance in Boston Thursday night. Center Jeff Halpern, who left the Boston game with a strained back muscle, skated this morning and will likely be a game-time decision. Defenseman Doug Janik will be on standby to suit up if Halpern can’t go.