Make us your home page

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 extends winning streak to four by edging Coyotes (w/video)

TAMPA — Forward Cedric Paquette said Tuesday might have been the first penalty shot of his life.

"Didn't look like it," coach Jon Cooper quipped.

Paquette, the Lightning agitator, looked like a natural with a nifty five-deke display, delivering the biggest goal during a 2-1 victory over Arizona in front of 19,092 at Amalie Arena. The tally came with five seconds left in the second period, during a four-minute Coyotes power play, to make it 2-0.

Considering the Lightning had allowed a shorthanded goal in three consecutive games — one shy of an NHL record — this one was fitting.

"A game-winner, shorthanded penalty shot — probably won't see that too often," Cooper said.

The Lightning (34-22-4) has won four straight, pulling to within three points of first-place Florida in the Atlantic Division.

While captain Steven Stamkos said the team still isn't completely satisfied and is a "work in progress," it was encouraging for Tampa Bay to find ways to win, especially heading into a four-game road trip and the trade deadline looming five days away.

"We're getting back to our roots a little bit," Cooper said.

It started with Stamkos, who has scored a goal in each of his last four games, his longest stretch since the Eastern Conference final. Like the others, this goal came right around the crease, poking in a rebound. "Another tap-in one," he said. "But they all count."

Said Cooper: "Really like the way he's playing right now. We're obviously going to need that moving forward."

The Lightning needed to jump on the struggling Coyotes — who had played the night before in Washington — and did with a great first period, outshooting Arizona 18-8. Tampa Bay got a "little loose" defensively in the second and third, Cooper said, but it gave up two goals or fewer for the third straight game. Goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy was a big part of that with 29 saves.

Paquette's goal, just his fourth of the season, zapped the momentum from the Coyotes and provided the necessary cushion. In the closing seconds of the second, Paquette made a steal at the blueline and went in for a breakaway before getting hooked by Shane Doan. "Thought it was obvious," Paquette said.

Paquette doesn't have a lot of practice at breakaways, saying his last shootout attempt came three years ago with AHL Syracuse. "I don't have many moves," he said. But Paquette had one in his head, thinking it would fool goalie Louis Domingue, who was otherwise stellar with 34 saves.

Paquette approached slowly, deking several times before putting the puck over Domingue's right shoulder. The Lightning bench and sellout crowd erupted for fan favorite Paquette, who had missed 24 games due to injuries this season but has played his best hockey as of late.

"That kid is nothing but heart," Cooper said. "I'm just glad he's reaping some of the benefits of how he's been playing."

Lightning 1 1 0 2
Coyotes 0 0 1 1


First Period—1, Tampa Bay, Stamkos 26 (Callahan, Killorn), 12:38. Penalties—Domi, Ari (hooking), 16:49.

Second Period—2, Tampa Bay, Paquette 4 (penalty shot), 19:55 (sh). Penalties—Doan, Ari (holding), 15:07; Palat, TB, double minor (high-sticking), 16:58.

Third Period—3, Arizona, Martinook 8 (Stone, Doan), 4:06. Penalties—Hanzal, Ari (tripping), 1:10; Johnson, TB (embellishment), 1:10. Shots on Goal—Arizona 8-10-12—30. Tampa Bay 18-10-8—36. Power-play opportunities—Arizona 0 of 2; Tampa Bay 0 of 2. Goalies—Arizona, Domingue 12-11-4 (36 shots-34 saves). Tampa Bay, Vasilevskiy 10-5-0 (30-29). A—19,092 (19,092). T—2:37. Referees—Jean Hebert, Frederick L'Ecuyer. Linesmen—Devin Berg, Darren Gibbs.

Stamkos on roll

The captain, back at center, has scored in four in a row. 2C

Up next

at Devils, 7 p.m. Friday, Newark, N.J.

TV/radio: Fox Sun, 970-AM

Lightning extends winning streak to four by edging Coyotes (w/video) 02/23/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, February 24, 2016 6:47am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. What major sporting event could Tampa Bay land next?

    Lightning Strikes

    We are on quite a roll as a community. First, we had a Super Bowl drop from the storm clouds into our lap. It just reaffirms the fact that Tampa Bay is great at lap. And Monday it became official: Next year's NHL All-Star Game will be held at Amalie Arena. The best in the world will be here to shoot and score. And …

    MVP Wayne Gretzky is congratulated at the 1999 NHL All-Star game, the last time the event was in Tampa Bay. [DIRK SHADD   |   Times file]
  2. How the 2018 NHL All-Star Game reflects Jeff Vinik's vision for Tampa

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — There were several reasons the NHL announced Monday that Tampa will host the 2018 All-Star Game on Jan. 28.

    This was the  logo for the 1999 NHL All-Star game played Sunday, Jan 24, 1999 at the Ice Palace in Tampa Bay. (AP Photo)
  3. For starters: Rays at Rangers, with Erasmo on the mound again


    UPDATE, 6:36: Cash said the Rays will "be smart" in deciding whether to use Farquhar, Hunter and Colome tonight, so it could be a closing combo of the Blaze Brothers, Alvarado and Stanek, with Whitley another option. ... Cash said De Leon provides depth for tonight, and mentioned that some of the other relief …

  4. USF baseball heads to Gainesville for regional play


    TAMPA — Had USF's players and coaches been less confident in their NCAA Tournament resume, Monday's selection show might have induced fidgeting, perhaps even frustration.

    South Florida coach Mark Kingston looks on during 2017 American Athletic Conference game Tuesday, May 23, 2017 in Clearwater during the American Athletic Conference. The Bulls won 7-6.
  5. Rays call up Jose De Leon to add depth to bullpen tonight


    The Rays decided that after playing 15 innings Sunday they could use some depth and length in their bullpen after all and are calling up RHP Jose De Leon from Triple-A.

    The Rays have recalled Jose De Leon from Triple-A Durham.