May 28, 2004
©Pensacola News Journal
The Tampa Bay Lightning went into Thursday’s Game 2 of the Stanley Cup finals down, 1-0, to the visiting Calgary Flames.
Reserve goaltender Brian Eklund, a Pensacola Ice Pilot for the past two seasons, is writing a daily diary for the News Journal. He wrote this installment before Thursday night’s game, won 4-1 by the Lightning.
Every game, especially at this point in the season, is a must win. Coach (John Tortorella) said it’s wrong to think otherwise.
Every game is a must-win. If you think otherwise, you shouldn’t be here. Every game is the biggest of the year.
Calgary came in here hoping to split the games. Now, with a 1-0 lead, they’re thinking they want both. When you win the first game on the road, you want that other one.
They forced us into mistakes and it cost us.
The two mistakes (a pair of unsightly goals by Calgary) were bad. But that’s the thing about Nikki (Nikolai Khabibulin): not much really shakes him. That’s one of the biggest things I’d like to take away from this experience. Whatever it is — goals, off-ice — it doesn’t bother him. He’ll bounce back.