Lightning Speed Completes Home and Home Sweep, St. Louis hits Milestone

By on November 27, 2011

Tampa, Fla. – In a twenty seven hour period the Tampa Bay Lightning played with their strengths to take the home and home series against State of Florida and Southeast Division rival,  the Florida Panthers.  A 2-1 overtime win in Sunrise last night and a 5-1 domination in Tampa tonight.

The Lightning procured goals tonight from four different players in the first forty minutes with three of the goals coming in just under a seven minute span in the second period.

The first goal which came with just over two minutes gone in the first was a milestone for Marty St. Louis.  It was his 300th career goal as a member of the Lightning.   After the game St. Louis was humble in his feat, “You know I’m proud to say I’ve been on the same team for eleven years now.  You don’t see it too much in today’s game.  I didn’t even know it my 300th, I forgot about it I guess.  I’m proud of it.  If you told me eleven years ago I would score 300 goals for this team, I would have paid money for that.”  When Erik Erlendsson of the Tampa Tribune joked that Marty probably would have been happy with 300 games, Marty closed with, “I would have taken 300 shifts!”

Tom Pyatt scored his first of the season at 3:49 of the second period which was also his first as a member of the Lightning.

Lightning goalie Mathieu Garon, who started both of the back to back, home and home games with Florida, stopped the first 23 shots he faced in the first fifty seven minutes and forty three seconds.   At that time Panthers center Shawn Matthias spoiled the shut-out with his team’s 24th shot.  On losing the shut-out that late in the game Garon said, “It happened in the past but I mean that’s a different kind of goal, we should have; I should had a shut-out.  But I don’t really care about the shut-out along as we win that is what’s important.”

After the game in the locker room Steven Stamkos gave an explanation of why they were able to take two in a row from the Panthers, “We are utilizing our speed and are confident right now.  When you get confidence good things happen and you get bounces and you get rewarded.  We stuck exactly to the structure that we wanted to tonight and utilized our speed.” 

Stamkos scored twice, had one assist with a plus three, an easy choice for the number one star.

Coach Guy Boucher stated post game, “It about being ourselves…just a question of team commitment, the leaders not only buying into it but really leading the way… yes urgency kicked in.” 

Boucher on Marty St. Louis, “Especially in today’s hockey, I have the utmost respect for players who stay in the same organization.  Look at our GM (Steve Yzerman), I mean he’s the perfect example of being, staying in one place, being loyal to one organization and its fans… but I think we got a perfect example here of a guy (St. Louis) who’s here for the right reasons and has done the job from day one and continues to do it.   I think Tampa Bay is extremely, extremely lucky, to have such an individual, not just a hockey player, such a man.  In here, and I think the kids, and the owner, the people in this rink, and our fans; they love him.  If they knew closely like I know him, they’d love him even more.  He’s quite an impressive individual and deserves everything he gets.”

The Lightning have two tough Western Conference road games next week facing the Minnesota Wild on Monday and the Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday before returning home to host the NY Rangers Saturday December 3rd for one game. Then playing four consecutive road games in the Eastern Conference (Ottawa, Islanders, Rangers and Philadelphia).

With six of the next seven away from the arena formerly known as the Ice Palace, now called the St. Pete Times Forum, soon to be called the Tampa Bay Times Forum, Lightning fans need to hope this is the turning point where this speed strength carries over to the road.

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