Saturday, November 18, 2017
Tampa Bay Lightning

Idle Tampa Bay Lightning falls into East basement

RECOMMENDED READING


UNIONDALE, N.Y. — Evgeni Nabokov earned his 300th career win as Michael Grabner scored the go-ahead goal with three minutes left, and the Islanders beat the Sabres 4-2 Saturday.

The win moved New York out of the Eastern Conference basement and combined with the Hurricanes' 4-2 win over the Bruins to put the Lightning in it. Tampa Bay and the Islanders have 38 points, but the Lightning gets the bottom spot because it has played more games.

Carolina, with 39 points, moved into the 13th spot in the 15-team East.

Nabokov, 36, made 23 saves to become the 26th NHL goalie with 300 wins.

"I want to keep playing because I'm not ready to look back," said Nabokov, who improved to 7-11 this season. "I am having fun doing my job."

He recorded 293 wins during a decade with the Sharks before joining the Islanders this season after being claimed off waivers last January. Only the Devils' Martin Brodeur, the Oilers' and former Lightning Nikolai Khabibulin, and the Canucks' Roberto Luongo have more wins among active goalies.

"I'm enjoying the guys here, and I want to keep working toward the playoffs," Nabokov said. "We still have 40 games left."

The Sabres, beset all season by injuries, have lost a franchise-worst eight straight road games in regulation. "This was another tough night for us," said Lindy Ruff, the league's longest-tenured coach. He has been behind the Buffalo bench since July 1997.

Game highlights: Jay Harrison scored the winning goal with 1:30 remaining for the host Hurricanes, who rallied for the 4-2 victory over the Bruins. The Hurricanes have won all three of their meetings with the Bruins this season. … The Red Wings won their 14th straight home game, equalling the team home winning streak record set in 1965, 3-2 over the Blackhawks in overtime on Todd Bertuzzi's second goal of the game. … Patrick Marleau scored off a rebound with 2:57 left to lead the Sharks to a 2-1 victory over the host Blue Jackets. The Sharks extended their point streak to eight games. They are 6-0-1 in the new year and 6-0-2 in their past eight.

Around the league: Next season's Winter Classic will be between the Red Wings and Maple Leafs and played at the University of Michigan's stadium, according to a report on the league-run NHL Network. But the report was not an announcement by the league. It said the league was expected to make an announcement before the Jan. 29 All-Star Game. This would be the first Winter Classic with a Canadian team. … Flyers wing James van Riemsdyk is out indefinitely with a concussion. He was hit in the head in each the Flyers' past two games, general manager Paul Holmgren said: "He reported (Friday) not feeling like himself."

Comments
Early Lightning awards: Tough call on MVP

Early Lightning awards: Tough call on MVP

TAMPA — It’s still way early, but if the Lightning’s record start continues, there will be a lot of hardware up for grabs. And we’re not just talking about the Stanley Cup. Nikita Kucherov has league MVP written all over him. Andrei Vasilevskiy coul...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Red-hot Lightning leading NHL in more than wins

Nikita Kucherov, top left, celebrates with teammate Steven Stamkos (91) after scoring against Florida Panthers goalie James Reimer. [AP photo]The Lightning (15-2-2) enters tonight’s game against the visiting Islanders (10-6-2) leading the leagu...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Brayden Point becomes ‘the heartbeat’ of the Lightning

Brayden Point becomes ‘the heartbeat’ of the Lightning

TAMPA — A local TV crew set up shop in front of Brayden Point’s locker stall the other day, waiting for the Lightning forward to be ready.Then, captain Steven Stamkos walked into the room for his scrum. It didn’t take long for the TV crew to change c...
Published: 11/17/17
Lightning pummels Stars for fifth straight win

Lightning pummels Stars for fifth straight win

TAMPA — The Lightning welcomed Ben Bishop back with a classy, fitting video tribute in Thursday’s first period. The sellout crowd of 19,092 at Amalie Arena gave Bishop, the greatest goalie in franchise history, a standing ovation. It was an emotional...
Published: 11/16/17
Updated: 11/17/17
Lightning journal: Specials teams in the spotlight vs. Stars

Lightning journal: Specials teams in the spotlight vs. Stars

TAMPA — C Braydon Point’s shorthanded goal tipped the game in the Lightning’s favor and the three penalties it killed during the second period kept it that way in Thursday’s 6-1 victory against the Stars.Dallas entered the game with an NHL-best 30.2 ...
Published: 11/16/17

Joe Smith’s takeaways from Thursday’s Lightning-Stars game

There was a classy, fitting video tribute to former Lightning goalie Ben Bishop in the first period. Think of all the moments in his five seasons in Tampa Bay. It had to be emotional for Bishop, who calls Tampa his second home. He touched his heart a...
Published: 11/16/17
Lightning vs. Stars vs. Bishop vs. No. 1 PP in NHL

Lightning vs. Stars vs. Bishop vs. No. 1 PP in NHL

Stars’ G Ben Bishop returns to Amalie Arena tonight for the first time since his last home game as a Lightning, which came before last season’s trade deadline.The teacher vs. the pupil (Lightning G Andrei Vasilevskiy) is one story line.He...
Published: 11/16/17
Lightning hold ‘Military Appreciation Night’ tonight

Lightning hold ‘Military Appreciation Night’ tonight

The Lightning will wear special camouflaged jerseys during pregame warmups tonight as part of "Military Appreciation Night."The jerseys include a nametag of an honorary service man or woman who will be present during the warmups, either on the team b...
Published: 11/16/17
Rick and Tom podcast: The hottest team in sports plays in Tampa Bay

Rick and Tom podcast: The hottest team in sports plays in Tampa Bay

The hottest team in sports plays right here in Tampa Bay, as the Lightning has started the season 14-2-2, goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy leads the NHL in wins, Steven Stamkos leads in points and Nikita Kucherov leads in goals scored. In the latest episode...
Published: 11/16/17
Jones: The goalie who could make us forget Ben Bishop

Jones: The goalie who could make us forget Ben Bishop

TAMPA — Former Lightning goalie Ben Bishop showed up at Amalie Arena on Wednesday.So how’s the big guy doing?Don’t know. Don’t care.Sorry, that’s wasn’t meant to be mean. Bishop is a great goalie, a good guy and a class act. He helped turn the Lightn...
Published: 11/15/17