Goalie Mike Condon stopped 42 shots & Center Mike Hoffman scored twice as the Ottawa Senators took advantage of some sloppy defense & beat the Tampa Bay Lightning 7-4 at Amalie Arena on Tuesday Night. Lightning Goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 6 goals on 29 shots, while Center J.T. Miller scored 3 goals & recorded his first career hat trick.
The game's first real good scoring chance came when Miller, playing on a line again with Right Wing Steven Stamkos & Left Wing Nikita Kucherov, took a slap shot from above the left circle. Condon got in front of that Miller shot. But he was unable to get in front of Miller's next shot about three minutes later, as the Lightning center took a pass from Kucherov from the behind the net & snapped the puck into the net, giving Tampa Bay the 1-0 lead & registering his 16th goal of the season.
The action & the shots on goal within the first five minutes of play made one to believe that the scoreboard would change quickly. And it did when Ottawa tied the game up at one after Left Wing Magnus Paarjarvi followed a breakaway attempt by Center Tom Pyatt, fought off the Lightning back-checkers & was able to push in the loose puck past Vasilevskiy to tie the game at one. And exactly three minutes later, on the power play after Lightning Center Anthony Cirelli was in the penalty box for hooking, Senators Center Ryan Dzingel placed a perfect wrist shot high over Vasilevskiy's glove side, giving the visitors a power play goal & a one goal lead.
Unfortunately for the home team, just 37 seconds after Dzingel's goal, the Senators goal count changed to three when Pyatt, who had two points in the first period, tipped in a shot from the point, making the Lightning deficit two.
Both teams finished the first twenty minutes with 17 shots on goal. And just like in the first period, it didn't take long for quality scoring chances, because just 39 seconds into the period, the Lightning went on the power play after Paarjarvi was called for tripping. And Miller, sitting at the side of the Senators net, got a rebound after a shot by Kucherov, patiently waited, then ripped the puck past Condon for his second goal of the game & 17th on the season.
The Lightning deficit remained at one, that is until the Senators got their second power play goal of the night. Lightning Defenseman Braydon Coburn picked up a penalty for interference & with the Lightning scrambling in their own end, following a blocked shot by Defenseman Ryan McDonagh, Senators Right Wing Marian Gaborik pounced on a loose puck & buried a shot past Vasilevskiy putting Ottawa up by two goals again. And the Senators added another goal, this time on even strength when Hoffman took advantage of some sloppy Lightning defense & was able to put home a rebound while sitting all alone in front of the Lightning net, making the score 5-2.
Tampa Bay was able to get closer after a litte help from Ottawa, who took back to back penalties & gave the Lightning a two man advantage for 42 seconds. And although they were not able to score on the five on three, the Lightning did get another power play goal when Miller got his third goal of the net after re-directing a pass from Stamkos past Condon, getting his 18th goal of the season & chipping away at the deficit. But just over two minutes later, the Senators got a gift goal, when on a rush Defenseman Erik Karlsson center a pass across ice but the puck went off Lightning Left Wing Chris Kunitz's skate & past Vasilevskiy for the Senators sixth goal of the game.
For the second period, the Lightning outshot the Senators 21-12. But trailing by three to start the third period, Lightning Head Coach Jon Cooper made a change in net & brought in recently activated Peter Budaj to replace Vasilevskiy. But the visitors greeted Budaj harshly when Hoffman got his second goal of the night & Ottawa their seventh goal of the night.
The Lightning inched closer with their fourth goal of the night with just over seven minutes left in the game when Defenseman Ryan McDonagh skated in from the point & converted a feed from Stamkos. The goal was McDonagh's third goal of the season & his first as a member of the Lightning.
Tampa Bay will look to get back on the winning track when they host the conference's second seeded team, the Boston Bruins on Saturday at 7 pm. Coverage begins on 970 WFLA at 6 pm.
1. TBL- Miller 16th goal (Kucherov, Stamkos) - 4:19
2. OTT- Paajarvi 7th goal (Pyatt, Pageau) - 7:47
3. OTT- PPG- Dzingel 20th (Gaborik, Ceci) - 10:47
4. OTT- Pyatt 7th goal (Ceci, Borowiecki) - 11:24
1. TBL- PPG- Miller 17th goal (Kucherov, Hedman) - 2:03
2. OTT- PPG- Gaborik 9th goal (Dzingel, Burrows) - 7:18
3. OTT- Hoffman 20th goal (Burgdoerfer, Duchene) - 13:44
4. TBL- PPG- Miller 18th goal (Stamkos, Hedman) - 16:26
5. OTT- Karlsson 8th goal (Unassisted) - 18:30
1. OTT- Hoffman 21st goal (Karlsson, Duchene) - 3:46
2. TBL- McDonagh 3rd goal (Stamkos, Kucherov) - 12:44
1. TBL- Erne (Fighting 5 Min) - 4:03
2. OTT- McCormick (Fighting 5 Min) - 4:03
3. TBL- Cirelli (Hooking) - 8:53
4. OTT- Burrows (Interference) - 18:24
1. OTT- Paarjarvi (Tripping) - :39
2. TBL- Coburn (Interference) - 5:35
3. OTT- Gaborik (Hooking) - 14:10
4. OTT- Smith (Holding) - 15:28