TAMPA-- Riding a four point night by the NHL points leader forward Nikita Kucherov along with three points from center Brayden Point, the Tampa Bay Lightning won their third straight overall, beating the Calgary Flames 6-3 on Tuesday night.
After three minutes into the first period, neither team had more than one shot on net. The Lightning didn't get their second shot on net in the game until over five minutes were gone in the period. But the Lightning did get on the board first when Flames defenseman Oliver Kylington was sent off for holding. And with Kylington in the penalty box, Point finished off a tic-tac-toe set up from Kucherov & forward J.T. Miller, ripping a shot high over Flames goalie David Rittich for his team leading 33rd goal of the year.
Less than five minutes after Point's goal, the Lightning made it 2-0 when center Cedric Paquette slammed home his 9th goal of the year after a feed from forward Danick Martel. And just over a minute later, the Lightning lead jumped to 3-0 when a shot by Kucherov made it past Rittich. Because of the bodies in front including center Yanni Gourde, the Flames challenged the goal & asked for a review claiming goalie interference but the goal was upheld.
Before the end of the first 20 minutes of the game, the Lightning took back to back penalties in less than 20 seconds, giving the Flames a 5-3 man advantage. And with both Paquette & center Alex Killorn in the penalty box, the Flames needed just 20 seconds into the two man advantage to get their first goal of the game, when defenseman Mark Giordano beat Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy.
The first period ended with Tampa Bay outshooting Calgary 11-6 & the Lightning registered three of the first four shots on net in the second period. But their best scoring chance seven minutes into the period came on a shot in close by forward Adam Erne that was pushed aside by Rittich.
Calgary did make it a one goal game when center Sean Monahan grabbed a loose puck just inside the left circle in front of Vasilevskiy & blasted the puck into the net to make the score 3-2. But within a minute the Lightning made it a two goal lead again after center Anthony Cirelli slid the puck past Rittich after a feed from behind the net by Kucherov for his second goal in the last two games. And when Gourde redirected a shot by defenseman Braydon Coburn into the net, the Lightning had a three goal lead again.
After two periods, Tampa Bay owned a 22-13 shots on net advantage. And after a tripping penalty on Flames forward Garnet Hathaway three minutes into the final period, the Lightning went on the power play. And after a slow start to the man advantage, Point rushed up the ice, slid a pass to Kucherov, who then found center Steven Stamkos & the captain fired a high, one-timer blast over Rittich for his 30th goal of the year, making the score 6-2.
Tampa Bay had two more opportunities with the man advantage in the third period but were unable to convert on the power play. Meanwhile Calgary got their second power play goal of the game when Monahan scored again. But the Flames couldn't get any closer than the final score 6-3.
Tampa Bay will look for their fourth straight win on Thursday night when they host the Dallas Stars. Coverage begins with the pregame at 6:30pm on 970 WFLA & puck drops at 7:30pm.
1. TBL- PPG- Point 33rd goal (Miller, Kucherov)- 11:54
2. TBL- Paquette 9th goal (Martel, Callahan)- 16:06
3. TBL- Kucherov 25th goal (Stralman, Point)- 17:19
4. CGY- PPG- Giordano 12th goal (Lindholm, Gaudreau)- 18:06
1. CGY- Monahan 28th goal (Lindholm)- 9:13
2. TBL- Cirelli 11th goal (Kucherov, Gourde)- 10:10
3. TBL- Gourde 15th goal (Coburn, Stamkos)- 16:11
1. TBL- PPG- Stamkos 30th goal (Kucherov, Point)- 5:01
2. CGY- PPG- Monahan 29th goal (Lindholm, Gaudreau)- 14:11
1. CGY- Kylington (Holding 2 mins)- 10:34
2. TBL- Paquette (Roughing 2 mins)- 17:26
3. TBL- Killorn (Hooking 2 mins)- 17:45
1. TBL- Stralman (Tripping 2 mins)- 18:47
1. CGY- Hathaway (Tripping 2 mins)- 3:02
2. Mangiapane (High-sticking 2 mins)- 7:57
3. Frolik (High-sticking 2 mins)- 9:47
4. McDonagh (Hooking 2 mins)- 12:54