Andreychuk inches closer to Cup

SCOTT FISHER -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 10:59 AM ET


 The Lightning are doing their best to pen the perfect storybook ending for their captain.

 Fourty-year-old Dave Andreychuk has played in 159 career playoff games without having the privilege of sipping from Lord Stanley's mug.

 He's now just two wins away from a drink.

 But while the Lightning would love to give their veteran leader a well-deserved sendoff, Andreychuk is not getting nearly the press Ray Bourque's 2001 Cup-winning swansong with the Colorado Avalanche received.

 "It would be great to win one for Andy but there's 24 other guys who would like to win one for themselves," said Tampa winger Chris Dingman, who was part of the Avalanche championship. "But if he wins, we all win.

 "One of the things Ray said was, 'Don't win it for me. Win it for yourself because you never know when you'll be back here.'

 "That's something we've talked about as an organization. We've had some years where it was pretty tough. We're fighting for respect in this league.

 "We're in the Stanley Cup final and there's still people who don't think we should be here."

 There are few doubters, now.

 Like all good teams striving to be great, Tampa proved last night it can win playing any style.

 Feared for their offensive firepower, the Lightning showed defensive grit and determination in last night's 1-0 victory.

 Defenceman Darryl Sydor, who switched from the left side to the right in Game 4, said he and his teammates have nothing to be proud of yet.

 "We haven't done anything except win two games in the Stanley Cup final," Sydor said. "It's just a game but it gives us confidence in playing with the lead."

 It was a lead the Lightning made stand up for the remaining 57:12, stealing a page from the Flames' tight-checking playbook.

 "They're a quick team," Sydor said. "They know how to reload and get back on you.

 "Sometimes we were being too fancy and get hemmed in our zone.You can never second-guess yourself. The game is about reaction. If you have a play, you make it."

 Sydor hopes that strategy will win them -- and Andreychuk -- the Stanley Cup.


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