TAMPA BAY-- Center Tyler Johnson scored three goals & back-up goalie Louis Domingue made 38 saves as the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Carolina Hurricanes 4-2 Tuesday night.
Carolina entered the game having recorded 100 shots on goal in the last two games. But it was Tampa Bay that put the first shot on net nearly two minutes into the game, when center Brayden Point spun around near the blue line, creating some space & then firing a high shot that Hurricanes goalie Petr Mrazek was able to block.
The best scoring chance in the first five minutes of the game developed when Lightning forward Adam Erne came in on a two on one break & was stopped on back to back scoring attempts by Mrazek. The Hurricanes followed that scoring opportunity with one of their own when forward Teuvo Teravainen snapped a shot on Domingue with the rebound ending up in the corner.
Carolina did get on the scoreboard first after a giveaway by Tampa Bay defenseman Victor Hedman inside his own end, Teravainen fed forward Michael Ferland, who made a nice move to get Domingue down & then slid the puck into the net for the first goal of the game.
Trailing 1-0, the Lightning were put on the penalty kill after forward Adam Erne was called for tripping. And having killed off all 13 penalties so far this season, the Lightning took it a step further, scoring their second shorthanded goal of the year, when forward Mathieu Joseph picked up a loose puck, sped up the left-side & fed center Tyler Johnson, who snapped a shot up high over Mrazek, tying the score at one. It was Johnson's first goal of the year & Joseph's first career NHL point.
Carolina outshot Tampa Bay 12-8 in the first period & 26 seconds into the period went on the power play after a tripping penalty on Johnson. But, other than a shot by forward Valentin Zykov. the visitors were not able to mount any serious scoring threats, adding to the total for the Lightning of 15 straight penalty kills without allowing a goal to start the season.
After successfully killing off Johnson's penalty, Tampa Bay grabbed their first lead of the game when Erne slid a passed over to Johnson who split the defense then flipped the puck over Mrazek, for his second goal of the game.
Leading 2-1, Tampa Bay looking to add to that lead, applied some pressure onto Mrazek, including a shot by center Alex Killorn that hit the post. But less than 30 seconds after that shot, Killorn took a hooking penalty, forcing the Lightning again to kill a penalty. This power play served to be more productive for the Hurricanes including a point blank shot by forward Sebastian Aho that Domingue stopped.
After making it 18 straight penalties without allowing a power play goal, the Lightning again with a strong shift from forward J.T. Miller & center Steven Stamkos, had the Hurricanes scrambling in their own end but were unable to get a quality shot on net. And after a giveaway by Stamkos, the Hurricanes got the tying goal after center Martin Necas finished off a feed from forward Warren Foegele with a one-time shot past Domingue.
Carolina had a 5-0 shots on goal advantage over the first five minutes of the third period but Tampa Bay got their first man advantage of the game when Necas was called for holding. And over a minute into the power play, Tampa Bay grabbed a 3-2 lead when forward Ondrej Palat took advantage of a giveaway by defenseman Calvin de Haan behind the Hurricanes net & pushed a pass to center Yanni Gourde, who was right in front of the net & snapped the puck short-side past Mrazek.
The Hurricanes, looking to tie the score up, got a great scoring chance just over two minutes after the Lightning took the lead. But Domingue robbed Ferland on a perfect tic-tac-toe set up. And after another grea save by Domingue, this time on Teravainen, the Lightning added the empty net goal after Johnson blocked a shot in his own end, beat a Hurricanes defenseman to the puck, raced down the ice & put the puck into net, giving him his fifth career hat-trick.
Tampa Bay will look for their third straight win in row on Thursday night, when they host Detroit, the last game of their five game home-stand. Puck drops at 7:30PM with pre-game starting at 6:30PM on 970 WFLA.
1. CAR- Ferland 4th Goal (Teravainen, Aho)- 10:25
2. TBL- SHG- Johnson 1st Goal (Joseph, Girardi)- 12:42
1. TBL- Johnson 2nd Goal (Erne, Miller)- 6:07
2. CAR- Necas 1st Goal (Foegele, Zykov)- 12:48
1. TBL- PPG- Yanni 2nd Goal (Palat)- 7:02
2. TBL- EN- Johnson 3rd Goal (Kucherov, Girardi)- 18:04
1. TBL- Erne (Tripping)- 10:55
2. TBL- Point (Holding)- 15:37
1. TBL- Johnson (Tripping)- 00:26
2. TBL- Killorn (Holding)- 11:22
1. CAR- Necas (Holding)- 5:55