Though Lightning did indeed strike, but if “Thunder Rolls,” it will not be through Tampa Bay. On Sunday, Garth Brooks’ performances at Amalie Arena in Tampa, scheduled for June 5-6, were canceled. This decision was made due to a scheduling conflict with the Tampa Bay Lightning of the National Hockey League.
After defeating the New York Rangers in game seven on Friday to capture the Prince of Wales trophy as Eastern Conference champions; the Lightning will face the Chicago Blackhawks in the Stanley Cup Final. Game two of the series is scheduled for Saturday, June 6 in Tampa Bay.
Refunds for the affected shows will be available at point of purchase. There was some thought given to rescheduling Brooks’ two shows on June 6, for Sunday, June 7; but, due to safety concerns, the decision was made to cancel them altogether. Garth Brooks, along with wife/supporting act Trisha Yearwood, released a statement on the matter.
First of all, we would all like to congratulate the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Chicago Blackhawks for reaching the Stanley Cup Final. As we now know, Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final is being played on Saturday, June 6th. All parties looked into moving Saturday’s two Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood shows to Sunday. The issue of getting the network crews and their gear out of the building and getting our crews and gear into the building late Saturday/early Sunday for two shows on Sunday raises serious safety concerns. It is because of those safety concerns that the choice is being made to refund all shows and reschedule depending on finding a date that works for both the arena and the tour.
The tour will pick up in Birmingham, Ala. For a June 12-13 run at Legacy Arena at the BJCC. For their part, it does not appear that either Brooks or Yearwood harbor any ill will towards either the Lightning or the NHL.
“This was a hard decision for everyone,” continued their statement “We would like to thank Elmer Straub at Amalie Arena and Tod Leiweke with the Tampa Bay Lightning for working around the clock for the last 48 hours to find a remedy for the situation. We personally know Gary Bettman and are very familiar with the League and its players, coaches, and staff…they are all stand-up people. We are convinced everything that could have been done was done to try to remedy the situation. Congrats again to the City of Tampa, good luck, and we will be watching the series!!!”
By virtue of having the better record, the Lightning have home-ice advantage over the Blackhawks in the best-of-7 Stanley Cup Final. The series will move to Chicago for games three and four. The final three games, if necessary, will then alternate between Tampa Bay and the Windy City. The Lightning’s last appearance in the Final saw them win the Stanley Cup in 2004. The Blackhawks have won two Stanley Cups in the past five years.