The MLB is officially underway without fans in attendance. In St. Pete, the Rowdies have played their first games, as well. The NHL is readying to restart as well. As with other sports, the games will take place without fans, but that doesn’t mean the Lighting will be without their fanbase courtesy of the Be The Distant Thunder campaign.
“Bolts Nation, we need you now more than ever. Send a message of support by signing actual glass from Amalie Arena that will travel with the team to Toronto. Because no matter the distance, we know you don’t have to be with us, to be with us. It’s time to Be The Distant Thunder.”
Due to COVID-19 AMALIE Arena is currently closed to the public. This event will take place outside on Ford Thunder Alley. While this will be an outside event, you will be required to bring and wear a face covering or mask the entire time on premises as well as practice social distancing. Please follow all posted instructions while visiting AMALIE Arena.
Tampa Bay has an exhibition game set against The Florida Panthers on July 29. The team plays Washington Capitals on August 3, and travel to Boston to play The Bruins on August 5.
Here’s how the road to the Stanley Cup will go:
In the Eastern Conference, the Boston Bruins (44-14-12, .714 points percentage), Tampa Bay Lightning (43-21-6, .657), Washington Capitals (41-20-8, .652) and Philadelphia Flyers (41-21-7, .645) will each have a bye and play each other once to determine the order of the top four seeds for the first round of the playoffs, according to a report from NHL.com.
Games in the eight best-of-5 series in the qualifiers will be played with playoff overtime rules. The round-robin games will be played with regular-season overtime and shootout rules with ties in the standings broken by regular-season points percentage.
After the qualifiers, the conference-based playoffs will continue in the two hub cities. Each of the winners of the best-of-5 series will advance to play one of the round-robin teams in the first round. All remaining series will be best-of-7 and will be determined by seeding, not by a set bracket.