Lightning Go to Overtime Again and Defeat the Panthers

By on March 7, 2018

The Florida Panthers came in to Amalie Arena on Tuesday night riding a season high 6 game win streak as they had won 8 of their last 10. The Lightning were riding a streak of their own by playing 5 overtime games in a row where they put 9 points into the total column.

Two of the hottest players in the league took the ice for the Panthers in forward Alexsander Barkov who had 10 points in the last 6 games and goalie Roberto Luongo was 5-0 with a .934 save percentage in the last 5 games.

The Panthers were making a push for the playoffs as the Lightning were trying to maintain their 6 point lead over Boston in the Atlantic and a 1 point lead over Nashville for the President’s Trophy.

The Panthers controlled play for most of the first period but Yanni Gorde put the Lightning on the scoreboard by corralling a bouncing puck off the boards, changed direction and lifted the puck past a diving Roberto Luongo.

Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy was outstanding early and often in the first and he had to be. Defensive lapses in the first period gave the Panthers numerous golden opportunities and number 88 was stellar.

The Panthers finally got one past Vasilevskiy as the Panthers crashed the net and Nicklaus Bjudstad shot the puck from the left goal line just over the shoulder and under the goal post to make the score 2-1.

The score remained 2-1 as the second period commenced and Yanni Gourde’s special rookie season continued with a slapshot from the circle just under 2 minutes in as the Lightning took a 3-1 lead. The Panthers continued their onslaught on the Lightning defense and Vasilevskiy and Nicklaus Bjudstad got his second goal of the game. Steven Stamkos got screened by the referee and Victor Hedman and J.T. Miller got caught standing in the crease as Bjudstad tapped one in to make it 3-2.

The Lightning got their two goal lead back late in the 2nd period as Roberto Luongo gave up a juicy rebound on a slapshot from Steven Stamkos and Alex Killorn made him pay. Luongo’s stick went flying across the ice as he dove to make the save as Killorn wristed the puck into the back of the net.

The Lightning two goal lead disappeared quickly in the third period as Nicklaus Bjudstad hit the hat-trick for the Panthers as the fans were getting back to their seats from the break. The Panthers had an extra jump in their stride and kept the heat on the Lightning as they continued to pummel Andrei Vasilevskiy with shots.

The Panthers also caught up and took the lead in the face-off circle late in the third period as the Lightning controlled the draw early in the game. Adrej Sustr took a penalty at the 4 minute mark in the third and  Vincent Trocheck made the Lightning pay to tie it up at 4.

The third period concluded with the score 4-4 and once again the Lightning went to overtime for the 6th straight game.

Both teams had opportunities in the extra period with the Lightning just missing as Steven Stamkos took a cross-ice no-look pass from Nikita Kucherov that everyone in the building thought was going in the net but it went just wide.

As time trickled off the clock, the Lightning continued to press the Panthers and Roberto Luongo when Brayden Point slipped past  Evgenii Dadonov and crushed a wrist shot top shelf past Luongo for his 10th game winner of the season including his 4th in overtime.

The Lightning gave up a staggering 49 shots on Tuesday night and hopefully that number will decrease as Ryan McDonaugh and Ondreg Palat should be in the Lightning lineup before this homestand concludes.


Yanni Gourde now has the Lightning record for most goals from a rookie with 24.

Brayden Point has 57 points and a plus 21 rating.

J.T. Miller continues to be a positive for the Lightning since being acquired at the trade deadline with a goal, an assist and 5 hits.

The Lightning did not have a power play opportunity with the Panther receiving 2 and scoring on one by Trocheck on a Andrej Sustr penalty in the 3rd.

Next up: The Rangers at home on Thursday night at 7:30





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