A glimmer of hope, but still no result.
Dwayne Roloson allowed 4 goals on 28 shots and 1 of 3 in the shootout for the penalty shot session loss.
VAN Edler (7), (Sulzer, H. Sedin), 2:36
VAN Hansen (13), (Hamhuis)(SH), 8:16
TB Stamkos (29), (Malone, Bergeron), 10:12
VAN Malhotra (4), (Duco, Ballard), 12:27
TB Lecavalier (16), (Stamkos, Gilroy), 19:28
VAN Kesler (12), (Raymond, Hodgson), 19:58
TB Downie (7), (Kubina, St. Louis), 6:14
TB Malone (8), (St. Louis, Lecavalier), 18:59
Tonight was the halfway point of the season, and the prognosis is ugly, on paper. The team is 3 games under .500 and 8 points out of the final playoff spot in the East with 5 teams ahead of them that the Lightning need to jump over. It's bad. But, a comeback like tonight to force overtime gives a glimmer of hope. I wondered if this team had given up after falling down 2-0 in the first period. It might've been easy for them to lay down then. It'd be just as easy to lay down at 4-2 on the crippling goal by Kesler at the end of the second period. The team still pressed on, though, and so there's a tiny bit of life in Tampa Bay yet.
Brendan Mikkelson had a decent debut in a modest amount of ice time. There's something to work with there. He does skate well and he's got more willingness to pop people than had been advertised. You can see why Yzerman pulled the trigger to get him. That said, between Mikkelson, Gilroy, and Gervais: eat a little, boys. Drop by Babe's Pizza in Brandon after practice some time. Sweet mercy. Pavel Kubina sweats more weight off in a game than those three weigh combined, I'm fairly certain. Mario Larocque thinks they're skinny.
Vincent Lecavalier pulls into the halfway mark on a pace for 32 goals and 60 points. 32 goals would be his best output since 2007-2008. He's not what he was, but he's not a bum, either. I think the hyperbole about him being a glorified third liner at this stage of his career is a bit much.
Steven Stamkos is on a pace for 58 goals and 94 points. 60 and 100 isn't out of the question with all the home games the Lightning have coming up.
What's sad is, at their current paces, Teddy Purcell, Steve Downie, Ryan Malone, and Dominic Moore combined will only have 50 goals. So, Stammer's the equivalent of 4 mortal men, thus far. The secondary scoring has got to improve.
Brett Connolly was +1 with 2 shots and 1 hit in 8:33.