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06-09-2004, 05:33 PM
Vlad The Impaler
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I don't see why TB wouldn't have a chance at the cup. I think they should be able to contend especially if they make adjustments. I am far from sold on the defense. Even the veteran they got to add the last ingredient (Sydor) was downright horrible at times.

The team needs work but obviously ALL teams do, especially in this day and age where trades are common place and money is of the utmost importance leading to tough contract negociations.

If you look at the three teams that have been able to repeat in recent times (NJ, Det and Col) they ALL made adjustments between cups. Some of those adjustments were pretty big!

There can even be extreme bad luck, a good example being Vlad Konstantinov with Detroit. Such a killer defenseman and disabled after the first cup win. As you can see, even a young team caan need some drastic adjustments over time.

I agree with Blind Gardien, the good thing is they have a stable, bright, creative and pigheaded coaching staff that I like a lot. Cup victories start at the very top with management and coaching and then down.

It is a very equal field, I am not ready to call TB a contender for the next decade. It could be that way but I want to see what happens next season. I'm *cautiously* optimistic that they will be a very good team for years to come but both finalists this year did not strike me as "forces" in the league.

The next CBA will also tell us more, of course.

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