TAMPA (FOX 13) - One of the biggest acquisitions for the Tampa Bay lightning -- aside from Dan Girardi -- is a familiar face: Chris Kunitz. It's that familiarity that brought him here to the Bay Area.
"Playing this team, there was always the threat of them putting us on our heels and you knew they had the special players," Chris Kunitz told FOX 13 News. "It was easy to picture ourselves playing for a team like this and an organization like this."
Kunitz comes to the Lightning from Pittsburgh. Bolts and Penguins squared off in the Eastern Conference Final twos years ago, when Kunitz scored three goals in the series.
They went on to win the Stanley Cup that year -- one of four of his championship rings, which is more than any active player in the NHL.
"You have to be fortunate to be a part of some good teams. Obviously being in one spot where a team is successful for a while, like here, that has that superstar power to drive you to those championships, Kunitz said, "but also have the ability to surround them with good quality players who under stand their roles."
Kunitz played in a community that was crazy for their hockey. He admittted he's a bit surprised how crazy Tampa is about their team.
"They come to enjoy the game. They might not know everything about hockey but they want to be entertained and the team puts on a good show," he said. "It's one thing to watch it on the big screen but to be down there and see the excitement and the fans and the jerseys, It's something that you don't typically get this far south."
Through 11 games, the Lightning are at 9-1-1, with 6-0 at home.