Where the Tampa Bay Lightning sits right now is on the cusp
of securing a 2019 Stanley Cup Playoff berth, and it’s only February 17th.
They’re 15 points ahead of the #2 club(s) in the National Hockey League right
now. For sports fans who don’t know the NHL point system (and any fan actually does know) 15 points amounts to 7 wins
and 1 overtime/shootout loss.
In 59 games played this season, the Bolts have won 44 of them. That’s thousands of a point under a .750 win percentage. The Lightning is better than that in the NHL’s point percentage department — they’re .780, that’s 78% of the possible 118 points from those 59 games played. That’s better than three-quarters of the potential points.
There’s a downside to me trying to push indie music on Spotify. It’s not the fact I spend time trying to find tunes through radio streams and online sites curate the playlists accordingly, it’s not when people approach me with music – sometimes fitting, sometimes not – to consider for the lists. It’s the common habit with Spotify that people might follow a playlist, it doesn’t mean the people actually listen.
We’re in the middle of the second-to-last month of the NHL season and lo and behold, the long-awaited Tampa Bay Lightning third jersey was unveiled last week before the Bolts were to square off with the St. Louis Blues.
I don’t know about other Lightning, but I was really really piqued and curious what was to come with the new jersey, it excited me. I mean, come on! This is a big opportunity to have something that mixes unique vision with nostalgia and fits the pretentious nature of the Lightning’s current clean look! It could be an additional morale lift to a season that is already a stratospheric thunderstorm! I had been wondering if this would even happen; a third jersey for Tampa Bay in 2018-19, but here it was, finally, and…and…and…!!
I had someone approach me to write my story to aid in lobbying Congress for research funding Neurofibromatosis (and Neurofibromatosis Type Two) research. The idea piqued my interest because, hey, I’m a writer! I’ve been doing it for so long and have a unique voice in saying things. I knew I couldn’t write a huge piece or an autobiography, but I thought it’d still be an opportunity…
Yeah, well, I had to work in a plea for funding in it, and I
couldn’t have more than a page for my
story. I could work in issues I’ve dealt with and family plights, but just a
I can’t write a story about what I deal with while having the genetic disease NF2 in only a page. Oh, I could summarize things in a bulleted list… but that doesn’t make a true case to politicians to actually give a care.
There’s also that aspect – politicians of the United States
of America at the moment – that works against truly trying to coerce federal
support toward researching a rare medical disease. After all, there’s a faction
that thinks a physical wall is a necessity for national security, and that $5.7
billion is a worthy investment. That doesn’t touch on others who push for
federal “aid” for multi-billion dollar conglomerate corporations who need no
such help in order to profit.
Yeah, my story, as a short summary and plea for cash, would
mean shit to that element of political America. Preventing a disease that
affects about one in every 25,000 human beings on the planet is not something
that these people are going to be sold on when it comes to listing ailments and
hindrances in a few words.
Yet here I’ve written 300 and haven’t said a thing about my story. If a Congressional representative or the United States Senator ever reads these words is not something I expect. Nor do I expect to sell them or readers from the general populous on contributing to the NF Network and helping fund research and support for Neurofibromatosis/Neurofibromatosis Type 2 patients, but whatever. Here’s my story.
This isn’t open to all and any musicians; this is open to artists in the Tampa Bay metropolitan region. The Lighter Side of Tampa Bay currently has only nine musicians on it, but a number of songs from each:
There are more groups and artists in the region with worthy
content than this. This is, in part, why I’m posting on my blog: Hey! Tampa Bay
musicians with calmer tunes! Share’em with me and potential listeners online
You might want to listen to the list as-is to get an idea of
the sound I’m going for. I don’t know if hip-hop would mix in, or a bass/beat
heavy dance/pop number with wailing vocals. Explicit content is also frowned
upon. Seriously, I’m not calling it “The Lighter Side of Tampa Bay”
because of the sun.
Music Tampa Bay, the St. Pete-based radio station and online streaming station that highlights music from Tampa Bay and West Central Florida musicians, is known for having an annual Top 100 list. The list is a compilation of 100 songs from the previous year that had received the highest vote tallies on weekly Top 40 lists/polls featured on the station’s web site. The Top 100 ran from 2008 up until this year.
I’ve done a service for featured artists on that list of
putting together a link-to-the-works listing three times – 2008,
The whole rationale is because graphic
lists of songs don’t give people (not just station listeners) the chance to
actually hear the songs, or find out
about the artists. Not all of the songs
are available online as the artists didn’t necessarily use distribution
companies that went that route.
In more recent months, I’ve put the 2008,
lists – what songs I could find – into Spotify playlists. The listings all have
just over half the 100 listed songs.
If you’re an Oilers fan and see this and get pissed off at the would-be criticism, relax. Really. You’re reacting to a shit situation that’s been ongoing under different guidance for too-long now. You’re reacting as you should. Do Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans do that? No so much.
Tonight is the 20th home game of the Tampa Bay Lightning’s 2018-19 season, the second-to-last home game event of the year 2018 as well. I’ve already heralded the accomplishments of the Bolts first-half in on-ice achievement. Now let me shed light on an aspect of the Bolts off-ice. Something Tampa Bay sports media gives the brush-off in overall coverage in town.
Amalie Arena’s stated max capacity is 19,204, and the Lightning has filled the building at or near capacity for their 19 games at home so far this season. That’s a home-capacity total attendance of 362,748 (you can view full attendance numbers for the NHL here, via ESPN). That’s a pretty damned solid turnout; the Bolts are 5th in the NHL in attendance.
Now, how ‘bout dem Bucs? The much heralded, over-promoted in Tampa Bay news, over-hyped Tampa Bay Buccaneers team have been meh in their season performance, a 5-10 record. Raymond James Stadium’s max capacity is 65,890 and the Bucs haven’t quite made it to capacity too often. After 7 home games, the Bucs average attendance is 54,567, 82% OF CAPACITY AND fourth weakest in the NFL this season (view the full attendance numbers here). It’s the season total attendance number that’s of most note: 381,971.
The Lightning should meet that attendance total tonight as
they host the Philadelphia Flyers. They’ll exceed the total with the final 2018
home game against the Montréal Canadiens on Saturday. The Bucs will, of course,
top that number with their final home game against the Atlanta Falcons… But the
Lightning will top that total-attendance number early in 2019. C’mon, their
averaging 19,000 a game, the finale at Ray Jay will bring 54,000 (give or
take). The Bolts will make up that differential in three games at the Amalie.
There are many aspects that can be brought up to factor in
with attendance (ticket prices, economy issues), but the one aspect that tops
it all: this is common. 41 home dates will do that for an NHL team. 41 home dates will do that. The Lightning are
still a dominant presence in the NHL while the Bucs are a dominant topic in
Tampa Bay sports media coverage while mediocre in performance.
I’ve always favored the Washington Capitals Alexander
Ovechkin when it comes to the prominent players of the NHL in the last decade.
It has to do with character and showing more depth than just being a player. He’s
a person and a silly one at that. And
I’m talking off-ice stuff here, not just around-the-game shenanigans common in
There’s more than that old commercial out there, but hunting
down the off-ice stuff is tough when his hockey things take video priority.
As for Ovechkin, things are souring for me somewhat. It’s not because of on-ice incidents or the Capitals in general. It’s not Brayden Point-vs.-Ovechkin in the NHL goal-scoring race. It’s not sports at all. It’s politics and awareness of Ovi’s political allegiance to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
There are many in-depth details to go through with the Tampa Bay Lightning season so far in the 2018-2019 NHL season; they haven’t even reached the midway point of the regular season but the club in setting records and living at the top… Y’know, they’re a dominant storm.
How dominant? It’s one number that has led to this posting, one number that people would sooner forget or brush off. It’s a number that deep sports fans should be taken aback by, though: A .756 win percentage.
After their 6-3 victory in Edmonton on Saturday, Tampa Bay’s season record is 28-7-2. 28 wins in 37 games played. Now do the math with that win percentage and you see the Lightning are on a pace for 62 wins in 82 games played. That’s one hell of a first half.
Now, the cold-water factor: You can’t and shouldn’t expect things to keep riding this high. Injuries were already overcome early this season but hey could easily thwart things in the months to come. The NHL’s silly-season is forthcoming, where physical play nadc altercations become more regular. That could easily factor in and spoil the party at Amalie Arena.
It also obliterates the franchise record for wins in a season; it’s 12 games better than the 50-win season of 2014-15.
And, of course, this doesn’t mean shit when the playoffs arrive. The proverbial second-season is just that, a second chance to shine for all remaining and contending clubs.
The Bolts last three games of 2018 and the first half of the NHL season are split between Eastern and Western Conference clubs. The Lightning host the Flyers and Les Habitants De Montréal before heading west to California . They’ll face the Anaheim Ducks on New Year’s Eve; something to take in if you’re not in the mood to watch the ball drop or partying with friends.
Kevin Pollakalways interests me. Usually, it’s been his side-characters that popped up in cinema that piqued my interest, and he’s been in a hell of a lot of roles not just in movies but television series’ too.
The first time I remember crossing him on-screen was as Rool in Ron Howard’s Willow in the late 1980s. Pollak’s stand-up comedy has always been ever so worthwhile, to say the least. And the flavor he uses when it comes to Star Trek impersonations is hilarious.
(My favorite part is when he turns Scotty into Dudley Moore/Arthur Bach, It’s not a party down here, Captain!)
I’m running a playlist on Spotify trying to highlight soft rock and easy listening by indie artists that aren’t well known. The UnderexposedSoft Rock and Easy Listening playlist is just shy of 6 hours in length as of this writing and the sound holds consistent with some songs going a little stronger than others. That’s been soft rock radio for decades though, hasn’t it?
That playlist compiles songs from over recent years of the indie and small label variety. I’m announcing a new playlist that will focus squarely on 2019.
TheSofter Side of Indie 2019 will highlight soft rock / soft pop / blues /folk / country and other songs that fit the listing, all released by indie artists. Some may be well-known others may be enigmatic… Whatever, the playlist is open to song submissions for songs published on or after December 15, 2018. Submissions start this early for 2019 simply because it’s unfair to count out songs published this late in the year.
While the intent is to take a variety of songs and offer them to the public for listening – and that’s a catch: actually having people listening to the playlist — one thing I’m not looking for is the “chill beats” sound with drumming/rhythm-section driven. I’m looking for the more traditional sound of music. I’m also not looking to add a multitude of foreign languages; if what you have isn’t in English, it’s not appropriate to submit it as a song.
I’m also not looking for songs with explicit lyrics. Think of it as a general-audience appeal I’m going for here, not the 18+ year old adult segments who accept that stuff.
I’m posting the playlist itself below. It’ll remain barren or mostly empty for I-don’t-know.
If you want to submit a track for consideration, please use the contact form. Make sure the subject reads “Softer Side 2019 Submission”. If you’re on Facebook, you may also try contacting me through the Johnny Fonts Facebook page.
When Louis Domingue was claimed by the Tampa Bay Lightning last season, I was taken aback because I recalled seeing the goaltender draw attention to himself by way of performances for the Arizona Coyotes. At the time, I thought he was due to become the eventual replacement for ‘Yotes goaltender (and former Bolt) Mike Smith while also stepping into a slot of elitism that former Coyote (and Lightning alumnus) Nikolai Khabibulin once held.
What the hell put Domingue on waivers to begin with is a story I didn’t know. It’s a story I’m not getting into here. I’m getting into the now .…
With the injury to Andrei Vasilevskiy, Dommer has become the Bolts starting netminder. I can’t say everything has been perfect for him in net… in fact, I’ve seen a lot of fan criticism toward him. Comparisons to Marc Denis(who served in net during Lightning 2006-07 and 2007-2008; 54 games total, a tenure-average GAA of 3.62 and a .871 save percentage). That criticism was born in October, well before Vasy’sinjury, with Domingue’s return start and flop against the Coyotes.