The Tampa Bay Lightning will play an exhibition game against the franchise's AHL affiliate, the Norfolk Admirals, on Sept. 25 in Norfolk, Va.
There can be no loser.
The rare matchup between an NHL club and its minor-league affiliate certainly will strengthen the relationship between the franchises, as well as create fan interest in the Norfolk area. The game will give fans their first glimpse of an NHL team in Norfolk in a decade and their first look at the Admirals for the 2009-10 season.
The game will be played at 7 p.m. at the Norfolk Scope Arena, the 12,600-seat capacity home of the Admirals.
The last time an NHL team played at Scope was a 1999 preseason game between the Washington Capitals and Carolina Hurricanes.
"We are thrilled to be able to bring the Lightning to Scope for an exhibition game," said Admirals vice president Joe Gregory said in a statement. "It's been a long time since an NHL club has played an exhibition game in Norfolk. This game will be a terrific way to break in the ice at Scope. We appreciate the efforts of the Lightning in making this possible."
For the Lightning, the game will be the fifth consecutive road game in as many nights. It will be a long trip: The first four stops are western destinations in Regina, Saskatchewan; Everett, Wash.; Loveland, Colo., and Winnipeg, Manitoba.
"We'd like to thank Ken Young and the Admirals for all they have done for the Tampa Bay Lightning and for granting us the opportunity to come play a game at Scope," Lightning general manager Brian Lawton said in the statement. "The Admirals and their fans have established a deep hockey tradition and the Lightning are excited to further develop that by bringing NHL hockey to the Norfolk community with this preseason game."
Tickets will be $25.00 and go on sale Sept. 2 through the Scope Box Office, all Ticketmaster Outlets, charge-by-phone at 1-800-745-3000 and online at ticketmaster.com.