Although the Tampa Bay Lightning fell just shy of winning hockey's coveted Stanley Cup - the team's general manager captured top honors Wednesday night.
The Lightning's Steve Yzerman was voted the National Hockey League's general manager of the year and received the trophy at the NHL's Awards Show in Las Vegas.
The league's 30 club general managers, a panel of NHL executives, print and broadcast media voted on the award at the conclusion of the Second Round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The final voting totals include points for first, second and third place.
"'Does USF really have a hockey team?' or 'How do you play hockey in Florida?' Something of that nature," the senior accounting major and team captain said. "Usually my answer is, you know, 'Hockey can be played anywhere, and it’s not like you’re playing outside.'"
As a matter of fact, the Ice Bulls have been playing for 25 years.
But the reason you probably haven’t heard of the team is because, at USF, hockey is classified as a "club sport."
The Tampa Bay Lightning have named Jon Cooper as the eighth head coach in team history, picking a man familiar to many of the players who will suit up for him.
Cooper takes over the job opened up by Sunday's firing of Guy Boucher. For the past three seasons, Cooper coached the Lightning's top minor league affiliate, the Norfolk Admirals, from 2010-2012 and this season was with the Syracuse Crunch.
After a hot start to the shortened NHL season turned cold, the Tampa Bay Lightning now sit just three points from the bottom of the league's standings. As a result, general manager Steve Yzerman decided to make a move, firing coach Guy Boucher shortly after Saturday's 5-3 loss at Ottawa.