Eastern Conference Finals Preview: Analyzing The Lightning's Defense

If you like hockey analysis and you're a fan of the Tampa Bay Lightning, then the Bolts getting this far in the playoffs must be a dream come true. With the Bolts moving on to the Eastern Conference Finals - which starts on Saturday against the Boston Bruins - there is all of a sudden a spotlight shining on the Lightning, creating new hockey converts each day. Not only that, the Bolts' success is drawing out analysts from the woodwork, flooding the internet with thought-provoking and enlightening reads about the Bolts.

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Our own Ken and Charlie recently tackled the Bolts-Bruins series, and the writers and readers at Raw Charge - SB Nation's blog on the Lightning - have also been putting out excellent work. In particular, there are two FanPosts that deserve highlighting:

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  • The 'Carried By Roloson' Myth: Roloson was given a large portion of the credit for the Bolts' series sweep of the Capitals, but it's not so simply to say that the's carried the Bolts through the playoffs. He's been spectacular, but the Bolts have also gotten contributions from many of their offensive players as well.
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  • The 1-3-1 'Tampa T': The Bolts use a unique formation developed by coach Boucher, and it can be somewhat confusing trying to understand how it work if you're not familiar with it. This article breaks down the Bolts' defensive alignment and strategy really well; I learned a lot from it.
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Considering the ECF is just about to get underway, I have a feeling we're just seeing the tip of the iceberg right now. If you're looking for more good analysis pieces on the Tampa Bay Lightning, keep checking in with Raw Charge (and us!).

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