Shutout of Jackets Rings in New Year Homecoming for Bolts

By on January 8, 2019
TRAVIS FAILEY PHOTO

Tampa, Fla. — It’s a new year for the Tampa Bay Lightning but their winning ways continue just the same as their first home game of 2019 finished with a 4-0 victory over the visiting Columbus Blue Jackets.

The first period was fast, with both teams going back and forth early, but no one on either side could break through. For the first 11 or 12 minutes of the game it seemed like play wouldn’t stop as extended periods of time went by without an offside call, a penalty, a goal or a stoppage of play.

The Lightning were finally able to get on the board with 4:05 remaining in the first when a snap shot from Mathieu Joseph made its way past the Blue Jackets goaltender, Sergei Bobrovsky.

Less than a minute later the Bolts capitalized again, extending their lead to two on a goal that can only be described as being in the right place at the right time. On a quick rush Brayden Point settled a high pass from Nikita Kucherov with his body, but sent the ensuing shot over Bobrovsky’s shoulder. Tyler Johnson then took one touch, swiping the puck to Kucherov, who then flipped across the crease as the puck then deflected past Bobrovsky off of Point’s let leg. The Lightning would take the 2-0 lead into the first intermission.

TRAVIS FAILEY PHOTO

The second period shot total was dominated by the Blue Jackets and they held momentum for most of the period, if you could call it that. Columbus had the advantage in shots 15-3 for the period but rarely put a shot on goal that seemed much more than routine for Andrei Vasilevskiy. Vasilevskiy made two or three great saves in the period and while many of the chances didn’t appear overly dangerous, as you could see with Point’s goal, sometimes putting the puck toward net is all you need to do for something to go your way. Luckily for the Lightning putting it near goal wasn’t enough and Tampa kept their 2-0 lead through the second period.

The Lightning were able to add insurance relatively quickly in the third as a quiet beginning to the period was broken open on a pass from Tyler Johnson that was finished by a rocket of a one-timer sent off the stick of Kucherov, just over six minutes into the period.

Up 3-0 the Bolts continued to press. With 12:07 remaining in regulation Point added his second goal of the game as he muscled his way past his defender, Cam Atkinson, and went near post to beat Bobrovsky again.

Point’s two goals on the evening put him at 26 goals for the season.

With the four-goal lead Tampa was able to cruise to victory and run the clock out, converting the shutout and beating the Columbus Blue Jackets by a final score of 4-0.

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