The 2008-09 season was a frustrating one for the Tampa Bay Lightning. They finished with a league-worst 24 wins and managed only 66 total points. The team was particularly weak in their own end, as they allowed an average of 32 shots per game and finished the season with a 3.28 goals against average.
The Tampa Bay Lightning have a deep and talented affiliate in their AHL squad, the Syracuse Crunch. Several players have filtered through the Crunch recently to make it on the NHL ice with the Lightning, including: Cory Conacher, Alex Killorn, and Richard Panik. Currently, their offensive talent at the professional level is deeper than their defensive talent.
It seems that, as a general manager, Steve Yzerman can do no wrong. In his first year as the Tampa Bay Lightning's GM, Yzerman made a number of shrewd moves that helped put the team into the playoffs, and while they finished outside of the playoffs this past season, Yzerman has continued to build a winning system.
Though the Tampa Bay Lightning fell well short of an NHL playoff berth, many of the players affiliated with the organization still enjoyed a successful 2011-12 season. The greatest success was felt at the AHL level, where the Norfolk Admirals marched through the Calder Cup playoffs to a championship, posting a 15-3 record in the process and dominating the opposition at seemingly every turn.