Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman understands their is impatience with the team's lack of success. But that does not mean abandoning his long-term plan.

"I'm not going to be held to timelines," he said this week. "These things take time and we’re going to be patient and we’re going to try to draft well and we’re going to try to use free agency wisely,"

Yzerman hit on several topics in his postseason news conference. Here are excerpts of what he had to say:

On the team’s start: Obviously, the start was very misleading. But in this 48-game season, a lockout-shortened season that starts late, goofy things happen along the way, not only with our team but you look around the league and other teams doing unexpectedly well or unexpectedly poorly; individual players having good years, off years, it’s an aberration a little bit I would say. But for our organization, we got off to a 6-1 start and we’re analyzing our team, we played a lot of home games, playing teams that were playing the night before with no training camp, with players in various states of physical condition. We knew we were going on the road and things would even out. I guess it’s easy to say now, but did we truly believe we were 6-1 team? I’m not sure that we truly believed that at the time, and as time went on that was proven correct.

On this summer: It’s difficult to predict or sit here and say they’re going to be big changes. The reality is it’s difficult to make changes. We all have these ideas and sit around and talk about we should do this or do that. It’s hard to make changes. It’s hard to do things. You have to find a partner to match and do certain things. But the reality is our group will change, how dramatically I’m not prepared to say yet, but we will explore options as far as improvement in the areas we need to be addressed. We’ll have players coming up from Syracuse next year that will have an opportunity to make this team. (Coach) Jon Cooper and his staff will have an opportunity to spend a summer preparing for a training camp, getting organized and getting the team ready to go in the regular season, so there will be some changes.

On Cooper: I’m not really a big fan of making a coaching change in the middle of a season. To assess Jon with 15 games to go with the situation we’re in, no. For him it was a learning experience as far as learning the league a little bit, just things as simple as travel, the daily routine in the NHL, getting into some of these buildings, getting to know these teams a little bit and assessing our players, getting to know what he has to work with and getting comfortable with them. So, really, for Jon it’s an opportunity to prepare for next year. At the stage of the season with the amount of games we had left, it was more so about next year.

On the draft: We think we’ll get a pretty good young prospect (with the No. 3 overall pick). Whether they’re ready to play or not next year you really don’t know that until they get on the ice and in training camp. … There appears to be a couple of young players that might be ready to play in the NHL next year. The reality is you don’t know that until you get into training camp and the early part of the season and see how they look at that point.

On Marty St. Louis: I’m not surprised. He’s a good player, and at his age, we keep talking about his age. His age is irrelevant. There are players in this league who are older than Marty and they’re 40, 41, 42. You look at how good Daniel Alfredsson is playing, Ray Whitney, Jaromir Jagr, Nicklas Lidstrom, who retired. So I can’t say I’m surprised. He’s very very fit. He’s very conscientious. He’s really professional and he’s a really good player. He’s been fortunate he’s been able to stay healthy throughout his career as well and he can maintain a high level of play, but it’s an example for every player in this league, especially our guys in our room, if you’re committed to staying on top, you can play for a long time and be a really successful player. We’re very fortunate to have a guy like that in our room to not only play well for us but to be a leader on the team.