Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Lightning ends skid, beats Devils

NEWARK, N.J. — So, that is what a winning locker room looks and sounds like.

Players smiling and laughing, music on the stereo and Lightning wing Marty St. Louis joking that reporters have "finally something good to write about."

Tampa Bay's 5-2 victory over the Devils Tuesday night at the Prudential Center that wrapped up a four-game road trip was good on many levels. The most basic: it broke a five-game losing streak.

There was Nate Thompson's first career two-goal game and goaltender Anders Lindback, in his first start since Feb. 24, with 25 saves in a solid effort, and even taking a shot, wide, at an empty net.

But most important was the way the Lightning (10-12-1) played — in control, smart with the puck, defensive minded, transitioning to offense without making what coach Guy Boucher calls "gambling" plays that so often have backfired and ended up in the Tampa Bay net.

Yes, the 91-second blip when the Devils scored shorthanded and on the power play to make it 4-2 with 4:45 left in the third period was bothersome.

"I'm not going to lie to you," defenseman Victor Hedman said, "it got a little nervous at the end."

Still, Thompson said the team, overall, played smart. "We did a great job of managing the game. We took the opportunities when we had them. There's a time and place for every time you go on offense. We did a great job of managing that."

"I've told the guys a thousand times if we just get rid of the impatience we'll be solid," Boucher said. "We'll get offensive chances without pressing and that's what we got. The guys deserve it."

Let's be honest, it helped that Tampa Bay faced a Devils squad that has lost six straight and is without injured goaltender Marty Brodeur. Still, those are the teams that should get a foot on the throat.

The Lightning did that by keeping New Jersey shooters to the outside and cleaning up rebounds left by Lindback. Hedman was huge in that area. Defenseman Eric Brewer also had a strong game after two straight in which his miscues led to opposition goals.

"When we play like this I feel comfortable because I know the guys are going to be there to help me if I screw up or if the puck bounces the wrong way," Lindback said.

St. Louis and Alex Killorn also scored and B.J. Crombeen got his first Lightning goal into an empty net. Cory Conacher and Vinny Lecavalier each had two assists.

Then there was Thompson, who has five goals on the season and added an assist Tuesday for a career-best three points.

"Don't expect this to happen all the time," he joked.

Everyone laughed.

Lightning 1 2 2 5
Devils 0 0 2 2

First1, Tampa Bay, Thompson 4 (Conacher, Palat), 17:04. PenaltiesSalo, TB (delay of game), :32; Labrie, TB, major (fighting), 11:34; Barch, NJ, major (fighting), 11:34.

Second2, Tampa Bay, St. Louis 6 (Killorn, Lecavalier), 5:53. 3, Tampa Bay, Killorn 4 (St. Louis, Lecavalier), 13:13. PenaltiesHenrique, NJ (holding), :41; Aulie, TB, major (fighting), 14:23; Clarkson, NJ, major (fighting), 14:23; Hedman, TB (roughing), 19:17; Janssen, NJ (charging), 19:17.

Third4, Tampa Bay, Thompson 5 (Conacher, Salo), 8:36. 5, New Jersey, Henrique 6 (Carter), 13:44 (sh). 6, New Jersey, Elias 6 (Zajac, Kovalchuk), 15:15 (pp). 7, Tampa Bay, Crombeen 1 (Hall, Thompson), 18:40 (en). PenaltiesGionta, NJ (slashing), 12:23; Labrie, TB (slashing), 15:00; Kovalchuk, NJ (hooking), 18:40. ShotsTampa Bay 4-10-10—24. New Jersey 10-4-13—27. Power playsTampa Bay 0 of 2; New Jersey 1 of 2. GoaliesTampa Bay, Lindback 8-5-1 (27 shots-25 saves). New Jersey, Hedberg 2-6-2 (11-8), Kinkaid (13:13 second, 12-11). A15,229 (17,625). T2:26.

Lightning ends skid, beats Devils 03/05/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, March 6, 2013 12:13am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays vs. Blue Jays, 7:10 p.m. Tuesday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Blue Jays

    7:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

  2. Baseball team's eclipse watch during game draws fans from far away

    Outdoors

    KEIZER, Ore. — They came from Hawaii, Rhode Island and Alaska, and as far as the Dominican Republic and Australia.

    Players for the minor-league baseball Salem-Keizer Volcanoes wear special eclipse jerseys Monday.
  3. Florida State sees plenty of upside in Dade City native Jacob Pugh

    College

    TALLAHASSEE — No, Florida State senior Jacob Pugh is not as versatile as teammate Derwin James.

     Florida State Seminoles linebacker Jacob Pugh (16) and Florida State Seminoles defensive end DeMarcus Walker (44) celebrate after sacking the Miami quarterback Saturday October 8, 2016 at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens.
  4. 247Sports: Berkeley Prep's Nicholas Petit-Frere top OT in nation

    Footballpreps

    Berkeley Prep offensive tackle Nicholas Petit-Frere already is widely considered the best player in Tampa Bay.

    Berkeley Prep rising senior defensive end Nicholas Petit-Frere (78) performs a pad drill during spring football practice at Berkeley Prep in Tampa, Fla., on Thursday, May 12, 2017.
  5. Full disclosure: My AP Top 25 ballot

    Blogs

    Now that you've seen the preseason AP Top 25, here's what I submitted in my first year as a voter. The AP doesn't give us many guidelines in the preseason. I didn't try to predict how …