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Fans travel from Slovakia to cheer on Bolts defenseman Erik Cernak

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TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — For most Tampa Bay Lightning fans, beating traffic on I-275 is typically the hardest part of getting to games. But a couple of fans dealt with a lot more than just Tampa traffic to get to Game 4.

Two fans showed up at Thunder Alley on Wednesday with a sign to show off just how far they had traveled to get to the Stanley Cup Final — thousands of miles.

“We traveled 5,286 miles from Slovakia because we [love the] Bolts and Erik Cernak,” the sign read.

Cernak, a defenseman for the Bolts, is from Kosice, Slovakia. He was drafted to the NHL by the Los Angeles Kings in 2015 after a season of playing professionally in his hometown. He was traded to the Lightning in 2017.

The defenseman played a major role for the Lightning in the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 Stanley Cup championship seasons, and has been hard at work this year as the team aims for a three-peat.

The pair from Slovakia who showed up to cheer Cernak – and the Bolts – on in Game 4 told WFLA.com they are visiting the Tampa Bay area for about a month.

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