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)

Mike McKenna's debut is fine, Tampa Bay Lightning isn't so good in loss to New York Islanders

UNIONDALE, N.Y. — Goaltender Mike McKenna was not going to comment too much on how he played during the Lightning's 3-1 loss to the Islanders Tuesday night at Nassau Coliseum.

"We didn't win the game," he said, "so it's a moot point."

Not completely.

Tampa Bay is in a tough spot with its goaltending. No. 1 Mike Smith is out with an upper-body injury. Backup Olie Kolzig is out for the season after surgery on his left arm, and Karri Ramo was pulled against New York after allowing three goals on four shots in a span of 3:25 of the second period.

So give McKenna credit for stopping 11 shots in his NHL debut after being thrown into the game 9:52 into the second period with no warmup and the team trailing 3-0.

"That's probably the way a lot of guys get into their first game," McKenna said. "You have to be ready for it."

"I thought he did well," coach Rick Tocchet said. "He made a couple of nice saves."

That is about all that went right for the Lightning (17-24-10), which lost its third straight.

It was Tampa Bay's third straight loss at the Coliseum, too, and Vinny Lecavalier's power-play goal 3:05 into the third ended a six-period drought here of 175 minutes, 52 seconds.

It was the Islanders' fourth straight win. Even so, with New York being statistically the league's worst team, it was, as Marty St. Louis said, "a game we had to have."

But Ramo, given the start over McKenna because he has more NHL experience, did not play well.

He got little help in a second period in which the Islanders outworked Tampa Bay and had a 14-10 shot advantage.

Still, two of New York's three goals were weak.

After Trent Hunter scored on a deflection 6:27 into the second, Mark Streit tallied from the high slot at 8:29 on a shot which Ramo said he stopped but then knocked into the net himself.

Radek Martinek scored his first goal in 102 games on the short side from the right-wing boards at 9:52.

Ramo was in a difficult situation. Between callups to Tampa Bay and serving three games of a six-game AHL suspension for leaving the bench to join an altercation, he had not played since Jan. 23 for Norfolk.

"I've been having a lot of time off this year, so I should be used to it," said Ramo, who is in his fifth tour with the Lightning as has played just 30 games total. "That's not an excuse. I should be ready to play during the season all the time. Sometimes it goes this way. I have to keep battling."

McKenna, 25, signed Monday off Norfolk's roster to a two-way contract for the rest of the season, did just that.

McKenna said the speed of the game, not the speed of the shots, was what he needed to get used to, and his best save came with 4:30 left in the third when he dropped to his knees and stopped Andy Hilbert on a three-on-one.

"The jitters didn't last very long," he said. "After the first save, I felt great."

Asked if McKenna will start tonight at Pittsburgh, Tocchet was non-committal but said, "I have no problem with him going to in the nets."

Damian Cristodero can be reached at cristodero@sptimes.com.

Islanders 0 3 0 3
Lightning 0 0 1 1

First PeriodNone. PenaltiesHunter, NYI (hooking), 1:20; Eminger, TB (hooking), 4:17; Comeau, NYI (roughing), 9:49; Lecavalier, TB, major (fighting), 10:55; Jackman, NYI, major (fighting), 10:55; Meszaros, TB (high-sticking), 11:47.

Second Period1, N.Y. Islanders, Hunter 13 (Nielsen, Okposo), 6:27 (pp). 2, N.Y. Islanders, Streit 9 (Weight, Comrie), 8:29. 3, N.Y. Islanders, Martinek 1 (Park, Witt), 9:52. PenaltiesLecavalier, TB (hooking), 6:08; Okposo, NYI (high-sticking), 10:22.

Third Period4, Tampa Bay, Lecavalier 23 (Recchi, Murphy), 3:05 (pp). PenaltiesHunter, NYI (holding), 1:07; Martinek, NYI (slashing), 1:28; Prospal, TB (slashing), 3:51; St. Louis, TB (high-sticking), 15:45; St. Louis, TB (cross-checking), 18:05; Campoli, NYI (interference), 18:18; Witt, NYI (tripping), 19:52. Shots on GoalTampa Bay 11-10-9—30. N.Y. Islanders 7-14-6—27. Power-play opportunitiesTampa Bay 1 of 6; N.Y. Islanders 1 of 6. GoaliesTampa Bay, Ramo 1-2-0 (16 shots-13 saves), McKenna (9:53 second, 11-11). N.Y. Islanders, Danis 4-5-1 (30-29). A9,808 (16,234). T2:20. RefereesPaul Devorski, Ghislain Hebert. LinesmenBrian Murphy, Pierre Racicot.

Mike McKenna's debut is fine, Tampa Bay Lightning isn't so good in loss to New York Islanders 02/03/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, February 4, 2009 8:01am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays journal: Offense shows signs of waking up in win over Blue Jays (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The drought was so severe that it's still probably too soon to say that the Rays are out of it, but they did score six runs Tuesday in a 6-5 win over the Blue Jays.

    Corey Dickerson high-fives Wilson Ramos after hitting a solo home run in the third inning, putting the Rays up 2-1.
  2. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Tuesday's Rays-Blue Jays game

    The Heater

    C Wilson Ramos, coming off major right knee surgery, understandably often takes it easy running the bases, though it's not always a good look. But he hustled when he needed to Tuesday and got the Rays a run by beating out a two-out infield single.

  3. Rays are full of ideas they'd like to share when commissioner visits

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Commissioner Rob Manfred is coming to the Trop today. Hmm. Rays principal owner Stuart Sternberg will be there to greet him. Hmmmm. And they have a scheduled joint media session. Hmmmmmmmmm.

    Commissioner Rob Manfred isn’t expected to say anything definitive about the Rays’ stadium situation when he visits the team today.
  4. Rays vs. Blue Jays, 7:10 p.m. Wednesday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Blue Jays

    7:10, Tropicana Field

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

    Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Marcus Stroman laughs after Houston Astros' Carlos Beltran reached first on an infield single during the fifth inning of a baseball game Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)
  5. For starters: Rays vs. Blue Jays: Looking to make it 2 in a row

    Blogs

    UPDATE, 5:52: Cash said the off-day should have done the Rays good after losing 12 of their last 16 games and 20 of their last 30, with just one day off in that stretch:

    Chris Archer will be on the mound for the Rays.