Joseph, Mathieu

NHL Game Night: 10-20-18 Lightning at Wild

Inconsistent Lightning stub their toe on a night Vasilevskiy isn't Superman.

TB-4
MIN-5 (OT)

Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 5 goals on 34 shots for the loss. He had some bright spots in this game that helped the Lightning at least steal a point, but there were multiple goals that leaked through him, including the putrid OT winner, as well as a First Period puckhandling gaffe that threw Minnesota a life line at a time they were in danger of being run out of the barn early on. Vasilevskiy can't and won't be standing on his head every night, so the Lightning skaters would do well to stay on their game for longer than 20 minutes at a time to help him on those nights.

First Period
2:23 TB Callahan (1), (Stralman, Miller)
10:50 TB Gourde (3), (McDonagh, Stamkos)
13:23 MIN Coyle (2), (Nieddereiter)

Second Period
3:49 MIN Foligno (1), (Fehr, Brown)

Third Period
10:45 MIN Parise (3), (Koivu, Spurgeon)
13:13 MIN Zucker (4), (Dumba)
15:02 TB Stralman (1), (Gourde, Palat)

Overtime
3:43 MIN Granlund (3), (Coyle, Stalock)

I don't want to put this all on the goaltender. The fact is the Lightning came out a house of fire and played their best period of the season to stake themselves to a 3-1 lead that could've easily been a 3-0 lead. The problem is, this Lightning team simply doesn't put two strong periods like that back-to-back and so they played a fairly mediocre Second Period while Minnesota stepped up to match their intensity level to get within a goal. The team was still in good position to win given how well they've protected leads, for the most part, early in this season. But, a puck leaks through Vasilevskiy and you're in danger of repeating the loss at Vancouver which only a goal against the run of play by Stralman ultimately prevented. The Lightning did absolutely dominate 3-on-3 play in Overtime, but Minnesota at least limited them to less quality chances with the possession advantage they had and then Vasilevskiy's night went from bad to worse on the winning goal. That's at least three goals you can probably easily put the goat horns on Vasiy for.

It's nice to get a point out of a night the goaltending backfired that badly, I suppose.

Mathieu Joseph had 1 shot in 13:20.

Anthony Cirelli had 2 penalty minutes and 1 hit in 14:18 and was 45% on 11 draws.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

NHL Game Night: 10-18-18 Red Wings at Lightning

Lightning win ugly... but they do win.

DET-1
TB-3

Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed just 1 goal on 30 shots for the victory. Played really well in the Second Period, in particular, while the team in front of him slumbered.

First Period
7:33 TB Point (4), (Gourde, Palat)

Second Period
6:20 DET Glendening (1), (Daley, Abdelkader)
15:19 TB Stamkos (1), (Kucherov, Sergachev)

Third Period
18:53 TB Killorn (2), (McDonagh)(EN)

Vasilevskiy and Steven Stamkos were the game's first and second stars.

That game was not artistic, and at times had the feel of the debacle against Vancouver. The team came out and played an assertive 20 minutes to get the 1-0 lead and then took their foot off the gas in the Second Period. Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard and the Lightning were very lucky to emerge from the middle frame with a lead. My guess is Jon Cooper may have made his team aware of that fact, because the first ten minutes of the Third Period they came out a house of fire and only Howard's goaltending kept the game close. In the end, the Lightning get out of the barn with the W against an inferior club. It's a result-oriented business, so that's good, especially considering the team finished this season-opening homestand 4-1-0. But, there's room for improvement in terms of consistency of effort, suffice it to say.

I think the Monstars have stolen Nikita Kucherov's game, but I'm not 100% certain.

Mathieu Joseph was +1 with 2 shots and 1 hit in 11:52.

Anthony Cirelli was +1 with 1 blocked shot in 12:21 and a gaudy 77% on 13 draws.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

NHL Game Night: 10-16-18 Hurricanes at Lightning

Opportunistic Lightning edge upstart 'Canes.

CAR-2
TB-4

Louis Domingue shined, allowing 2 goals on 40 shots for the victory. There was no dropoff with Vasilevskiy getting the night off, and just like Vasilevskiy the Dominguenator was the team's best penalty killer tonight.

First Period
10:25 CAR Ferland (4), (Teravainen, Aho)
12:42 TB Johnson (1), (Joseph, Girardi)(SH)

Second Period
6:07 TB Johnson (2), (Erne, Miller)
12:48 CAR Necas (1), (Foegele, Zykov)

Third Period
7:02 TB Gourde (2), (Palat)(PP)
18:04 TB Johnson (3), (Kucherov, Girardi)(EN)

Tyler Johnson, Yanni Gourde, and Domingue were the game's three stars.

Make no mistake, the Lightning were not as sharp as their opponent. Carolina looks in March form, particularly in their transition game, and they gave the Lightning fits for much of this game. Tampa Bay manufactured a win with excellent goaltending and by capitalizing on their lone power play of the night in which they cashed in on a blown Calvin DeHaan clearing attempt. Once they got the lead, they put the stranglehold on the young Canes to keep it, defensively, and that's how an elite team staves off a team like Carolina when they aren't exactly in midseason form.

Four games into the schedule the Lightning have six points, meaning they need six points in the next six games to hit the initial ten game segment goal.

Mathieu Joseph had a helper, his first NHL point, in 12:15. Blew past old man Justin Williams like he was standing still to create a shorthanded 2-on-1.

Anthony Cirelli was -1 with 1 shot, 1 hit, and 1 blocked shot in 16:50. He was also 47% on 15 draws.

Adam Erne had a helper and was +1 with 2 penalty minutes, 2 shots, and 2 hits in 9:37. Feathered a nice pass in transition to spring Johnson on Tyler's second goal. It was probably Erne's most impactful game of the season thus far.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

NHL Game Night: 10-13-18 Blue Jackets at Lightning

An imperfect snowman built by a resurgent power play.

CBJ-2
TB-8

Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 2 goals on 32 shots for the victory. The team's PK, in particular, is not passing the eye test right now, but Vasilevskiy's been so sharp he's smoothing out the imperfections.

First Period
1:00 TB Hedman (1), (Johnson, Kucherov)
11:17 TB Paquette (1), (Gourde)
18:37 TB Gourde (1), (Sergachev, Johnson)(PP)

Second Period
8:14 CBJ Anderson (3), (Wennberg, Murray)
15:51 CBJ Bjorkstrand (1), (unassisted)
19:15 TB Point (1), (unassisted)

Third Period
1:40 TB Point (2), (Miller, Sergachev)(PP)
7:12 TB Killorn (1), (Stamkos, Miller)(PP)
13:02 TB Kucherov (1), (Palat, Coburn)
19:59 TB Miller (1), (Point, Stralman)(PP)

Brayden Point, Yanni Gourde, and J.T. Miller were the game's three stars.

After a couple of less than inspired efforts, the Lightning looked like they knew something had to change going into a game against Columbus. You better play hard against a John Tortorella coached team because you know they will out of fear of going to the hospital for having a fine Italian loafer removed from their nether-regions if they don't. Jon Cooper pulled the right strings with reconstituted lines that included re-assembling the old Triplets line, and with a little luck and some strong work by Vasilevskiy when called upon the team built a big 3-0 lead.

Unfortunately, the team reverted to sleep walking in the Second Period and were dominated by Columbus much of the frame. Thanks to Vasilevskiy, they were still clinging to a lead with under a minute before intermission when Brayden Point got a big breakthrough to re-establish a little breathing room. A Point power play goal after the intermission re-established the three goal cushion, and it was on to garbage time. In the end, the bulk of the Lightning's fireworks came from a power play that finally showed the needed urgency and ended up with four power play markers to show. Several Lightning players got some feel-good stats in this game, including Gourde, Point, Kucherov, and Miller all breaking the goal scoring tape on their 2018-2019 seasons.

Still plenty to work on as the team continues to strive toward a full sixty minute effort, but pinning a snowman on a team beats a punch in the face... or a backdoor 4-1 loss.

Mathieu Joseph was -1 with 1 shot and 2 hits in 13:06.

Anthony Cirelli was -1 with 3 hits and he was 33% on 12 draws in 13:53.

Adam Erne was -1 with 1 shot and 1 hit in 8:23.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

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