Anthony Cirelli can't point to a specific instance when he felt right at home in the NHL with the Tampa Bay Lightning.
But the forward, who played all 82 regular-season games and four Stanley Cup Playoff games as a rookie this season, certainly feels it now.
"I don't know if there's a moment. I just knew, obviously, from the prior season playing in that playoff run and that atmosphere," said Cirelli, who played 18 regular-season games and 17 playoff games with Tampa Bay in 2017-18. "I think from there on, I just knew that if I continued to work hard, I could play in this League. I just tried to come ready for camp.
"I just got a little bit more comfortable each and every day and just gradually started to make more plays here and there, comfortable with the puck and comfortable with making plays. … I just tried to take it one day at a time, one game at a time."
On a Lightning team that featured Nikita Kucherov, Steven Stamkos, Brayden Point, Victor Hedman and Andrei Vasilevskiy, Cirelli didn't generate much talk.
Internally, his efforts were noticed.