TAMPA — There was plenty of blame to go around after the Lightning's embarrassing 5-0 loss to the Bruins Saturday at the Tampa Bay Times Forum.
As RW Marty St. Louis said, "We were all caught watching a little bit instead of making it happen."
But St. Louis, as a top player and captain, said it was his responsibility to try to lead the team out of its malaise.
"It starts with me," he said after the game. "I didn't have the grit and the aggressiveness that I needed to help the team when we were struggling a little bit."
St. Louis certainly was not the worst offender against the Bruins with two shots, three takeaways, a blocked shot and minus-1 rating in 17:58 of ice time.
But he knows his position forces him to answer for the bad as well as enjoy the good.
"It's not about pretty plays," St. Louis said. "You've got to take it one battle at a time. We did a poor job of that, and I'm probably the one who struggled the most trying to win battles."
"That's why you love guys like Marty," coach Jon Cooper said. "He sits there and steps up and puts it on his shoulders to lead and make sure these kinds of games don't happen again."
GONE FISHING: With a four-day break before Thursday's game against the Blackhawks, the Lightning on Tuesday did some team bonding with a fishing trip and family barbecue at MacDill Air Force Base.
"We've been on the ice maybe six, seven straight days (actually seven of eight)," Cooper said Monday. "We needed the break. I'm glad we had a little time off."
STAYING POSITIVE: Despite Saturday's loss, Tampa Bay (5-3-0) has played well.
It is four points behind first-place Toronto in the Atlantic Division. The power play (though in a 1-for-14 skid) still was 11th in the league at 21.2 percent going into Tuesday, and the penalty kill, after a rough start, has killed 11 straight shorthanded situations.
"I like the way we've played," Cooper said. "We had a tough one, and we all recognize that. … We know we have better in us. As I told the guys, if we had the jump we did in practice (Monday), the result (against the Bruins) probably would have been a little different."
Damian Cristodero can be reached at [email protected]