Tampa Bay Lightning
Good effort. Unfortunate result.
Marc Denis stopped 25 of 28 shots faced before being pulled for the extra attacker and the resulting Sharks empty net goal. The Lightning were paced by Dan Boyle's two helpers with goals coming from Vincent Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis on the power play. Individual assists went to Vaclav Prospal and Nikita Alexeev.
I thought the Lightning played reasonably well against a good, rested team coming off the game last night in Carolina. Unfortunately they were the victim of a couple of bad bounces that ended up in the back of their net and some good goaltending by Nabokov. The good news is that Vincent Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis seem to be on pace to score the amount of goals the team needs from them now, although Brad Richards is still struggling. What would help greatly is if the Lightning could get something out of the lower lines from players like Karlsson, Afanasenkov and Perrin.
San Jose 4:02, Joe Thornton 1 (power play) (Milan Michalek, Jonathan Cheechoo)
San Jose 2:51, Ryane Clowe 1 (Mike Grier, Scott Hannan)
Tampa Bay 16:08, Vincent Lecavalier 6 (power play) (Vaclav Prospal, Dan Boyle)
San Jose 10:51, Patrick Marleau 6 (power play) (Scott Hannan, Marc-Edouard Vlasic)
Tampa Bay 13:02, Martin St. Louis 7 (power play) (Nikita Alexeev, Dan Boyle)
San Jose 18:39, Mike Grier 2 (empty net) (Patrick Rissmiller, Marcel Goc)
Doug Janik was -1 in 8:18 with 1 blocked shot. Eric Perrin was -1 in 8:23 with 2 shots and 1 hit and he was 0/1 on faceoffs. Nick Tarnasky played just 3:01 receiving only 3 shifts after taking an early penalty for tripping.
Game sheet from NHL.com.
It was never really as close as the score indicates. Marc Denis allowed 4 goals on 17 shots in the loss before giving way to Johan Holmqvist who allowed 2 goals on 12 shots. Vincent Lecavalier and Vaclav Prospal each had a goal and an assist for the Lightning. Defensemen Filip Kuba and Dan Boyle each had a pair of helpers. The other Lightning goals were scored by Ruslan Fedotenko and Martin St. Louis with am individual assist going to Paul Ranger.
Tonight's game was another example of a problem the Lightning have had the past two seasons, which is allowing one bad goal or bad play to snowball into multiple goals and a huge momentum swing they cannot recover from. Tonight it was a soft goal allowed by Denis followed by a pittiful unforced turnover by Dan Boyle in the Lightning zone resulting in a goal. The Lightning miss having veteran leadership like Jassen Cullimore to put out on the ice in those situations and it shows.
Tampa Bay 5:48, Vaclav Prospal 2 (Paul Ranger)
Carolina 8:23, Eric Staal 7 (power play) (Justin Williams)
Carolina 8:32, Kevyn Adams 1 (Craig Adams)
Carolina 9:06, Erik Cole 2 (Ray Whitney, Rod Brind'Amour)
Carolina 5:14, Eric Staal 8 (power play) (Rod Brind'Amour, Anton Babchuk)
Tampa Bay 12:23, Ruslan Fedotenko 5 (Filip Kuba, Vincent Lecavalier)
Tampa Bay 16:41, Vincent Lecavalier 5 (power play) (Vaclav Prospal, Dan Boyle)
Carolina 17:34, Scott Walker 6 (Eric Staal)
Carolina 0:55, Scott Walker 7 (Ray Whitney, Rod Brind'Amour)
Tampa Bay 11:32, Martin St. Louis 6 (Filip Kuba, Dan Boyle)
Doug Janik played 15:02 with 1 shot and 2 blocks. Eric Perrin got 15:03 with 1 hit and was 75% on draws. Nick Tarnasky (not Nick Tinarski as the poorly prepared an laughably bad Carolina play-by-play folks would have you believe) played 6:05.
Game sheet from NHL.com.