After a red hot start to his rookie season, Cory Conacher could not believe the Lightning would trade him to the Ottawa Senators.
"It was definitely a shock," Conacher said. "It's always tough to get traded from the team you first started [playing] professional hockey with. I actually found out through the media instead of [general manager Steve Yzerman]."
"It hurts," said Lightning coach Jon Cooper, who also coached Conacher in the minor leagues. "I just think that was a hockey trade. It helped both teams, and I don't think there will ever be a winner and loser out of that trade. I think it was a win-win."
What the Lightning got from Ottawa fills their biggest need: goaltending. The Bolts hope Ben Bishop can be the franchise goaltender they have been searching for since they won the Stanley Cup nine years ago.
Bishop is 24 years old and has little NHL experience, but he has already shown some promising skill. He stopped 45 shots and shut out the Carolina Hurricanes in his Lightning debut last Thursday.
"He is an elite puck player," Cooper said of Bishop. "And he has composure all over the ice, whether he is in the net making saves or moving pucks."
"There is a great group of guys in the locker room," Bishop said of his new squad. "You can tell it's a close team with a lot of firepower. They can score goals."
Problem is, nobody has been preventing goals. Cooper said once Anders Lindback is healthy, he and Bishop will be the Lightning's co-starting goalies of the future. At a combined 13'1" tall, they already stand head and shoulders above the competition. One of them has to play like it.
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