The Lightnings biggest strength, bigger than the big 3 forwards, bigger than the solid supporting players and being the defending champs, is playing in the Southeast division. With the new division rivalries scheduling format (which I think is crap BTW) the Lightning get to play Carolina, Washington, Florida and Atlanta 8 times each. Carolina and Washington are, arguably, the 2 worst teams in the league. Florida is improving, but still not a legit playoff team. Atlanta could be better, but if Kovalchuck doesn’t come back then they are worse … much worse.
So basically a guaranteed 1-3 seed with home ice and probably should be a 1 playing teams that bad, that often.