The Tampa Bay Lightning have rebounded in a big way after suffering last postseason's historic upset, becoming the 2020 Stanley Cup Champions.
"A heartbreak. It's easy to say now, but it is true. Sometimes in failure, you find success. It doesn't come easy," Lightning head coach Jon Cooper said, per Sportsnet. "People say, 'you never know when you're gonna go back, you never know when you're gonna go back.' But I truly believe it was the heartbreak we suffered that brought us here today."
Tampa Bay had one of the most dominant regular seasons of all-time during the 2018-19 season. They accrued 128 regular-season points and entered the playoffs as a heavy Cup favorite.
The Lightning were then shocked in the first round, where they got swept by the Columbus Blue Jackets. The club became the first Presidents' Trophy winners to lose four straight first-round games in the modern era.
Tampa Bay has remained a top contender in recent years but hasn't been able to capture a title. They lost in the Stanley Cup Final in 2015 and in the conference finals in 2018.
"It’s been a grind. It’s not easy. It hasn’t been easy," Hedman said, according to The Athletic's Craig Custance. "But it’s all worth it now, for sure. That’s the bottom line. We’re Stanley Cup champs."