By TOM JONES, Times Staff Writer
Published October 9, 2005
TAMPA - Growing up in Ontario, Lightning captain Dave Andreychuk wanted to play one game in the NHL.
Now, at age 42, he has done something only six others have done. Andreychuk played in his 1,600th game Saturday, the most among active players.
The only others to appear in 1,600 games were Gordie Howe, Mark Messier, Ron Francis, Scott Stevens, Larry Murphy and Ray Bourque.
Andreychuk is signed to play through next season. If he can play every game this season and next, he would be five games behind Howe's record of 1,767.
Lightning general manager Jay Feaster has joked that he believes Andreychuk will play until he is 60.
Asked if he had his sights set on 2,000 games, Andreychuk smiled and gave a nonverbal answer. He put his thumb in the air, then turned it to the ground.
FINALLY BEATEN: It took 140 minutes and 55 seconds and 74 shots, but Florida's Roberto Luongo finally gave up a goal.
The Lightning's Fredrik Modin scored on a breakaway 55 seconds into the second period to snap Luongo's streak. Luongo had pitched a pair of 2-0 shutouts this season: against Atlanta in the season opener and against the Lightning on Friday.
The NHL considers the 1943-44 season the start of the modern era because that's the season the red line was introduced. Since then, no goalie has opened the season with three consecutive shutouts. George Hainsworth of the Maple Leafs opened the 1935-36 season with five straight shutouts.
TUNING IN: According to Amy Pempel, the director of media relations for Sun Sports and FSN Florida, Wednesday's opener against Carolina drew a 2.5 television share in the Tampa Bay area. The Lightning drew 0.7 for its 2003-04 opener.
ON THE AIR: The Lightning's popularity appears to be reaching well beyond the Tampa Bay area. Two radio stations outside the area will broadcast the Lightning this season.
The Lightning announced Saturday it has reached deals with WHOO-AM 1080 in Orlando and WIXC-AM 1060 in Melbourne to broadcast regular-season games as well as the playoffs. The stations also will carry the pregame and postgame shows.
GLITZ AND STICKS: The Lightning will hold its Glitz and Sticks, a Celebrity Casino Evening at 7 p.m. Tuesday on the ice at the St. Pete Times Forum.
The night includes photo opportunities, dancing and gourmet delicacies, and Lightning players will deal blackjack and spin roulette wheels. There also will be silent auction for sports memorabilia and hockey-themed items.
Tickets are $250, and sponsorship packages are available starting at $1,500. Proceeds benefit the Tampa General Hospital Foundations and the Lightning Foundation. Call (813) 301-6590 or visit tampabaylightning.com.
OUCH: Dan Boyle took 24 stitches in the mouth after getting by the puck in the second period. He returned to play after getting stitched up.
FEASTER HONORED: Feaster received his award for being named Sporting News executive of the year for the NHL in 2003-04. Feaster was given a glass trophy by John Rawlings, executive editor of the Sporting News.