The Lightning Insider
Andre Roy was back at practice today, and the team issued the following statement from GM Jay Feaster:
“Andre Roy is rejoining the Lightning, today, Monday, March 17, 2008, and will participate in all team activities from this point forward. We are very pleased to have Andre back skating and practicing with his teammates. Andre has consistently fought, battled, defended and watched the backs of his teammates, and he has done so throughout his 10-year NHL career.
“The unfortunate situation that took place between periods and on the bench during the team’s game in Philadelphia on March 6, 2008, as well as a similar on-ice/on-bench incident that took place at the St. Pete Times Forum on February 2, 2008 in a game against the Florida Panthers led me to ask Andre to take some time away from the team while I fully reviewed and investigated both incidents.
“While hockey is an emotional game and we want all of our players to compete and play the game with passion, it is also necessary that all of our players be under control and working within the team concept during games. The situations against Florida and in Philadelphia raised concerns in this regard and I felt the need to fully review and analyze the matters.
“After meeting and/or discussing matters with the coaching staff, Andre, members of the team’s leadership core, Andre’s agent and the NHL’s Hockey Operations Department, I am confident that the measures we took in having Andre away from the team for 10 days was the right course of action both for Andre and for the club. We now welcome him back and look forward to putting all of this behind us.
“It is very important that I make it clear that the “other incidents” I referenced in announcing the original decision was, in fact, the situation that took place in the game against the Panthers on February 2, and the scenario that evolved from that situation both on the ice and on the bench. To the extent I regret anything in this process, I deeply regret any untoward assumptions that were made or any jumping to conclusions about what the “other incidents” entailed. In retrospect I wish I had made that crystal clear at the very outset and I apologize to Andre for any suspicions or aspersions that error may have caused to be cast upon him or his family.
“Again, our hope now is that we are able to put this matter behind us and move forward in the best interests of the club, and we are pleased to have Andre back with the team.”
Practice, originally scheduled for the St. Pete Times Forum with the annual team photo set to take place, was moved to Brandon after a problem with the ice at the Forum. The photo was postponed. The practice featured fisticuffs between Shane O’Brien and Karl Stewart; nice to see the passion!