Tuesday, May 22, 2018
Tampa Bay Lightning

Series tightens as Lightning loses Game 3 in Detroit (w/video)

DETROIT — The Lightning was a confident group Sunday, wing Alex Killorn admitted, as evidenced by its loose and loud morning skate.

Maybe a bit too confident.

Tampa Bay knew the Red Wings would come out flying, desperately trying to avoid falling into a seemingly insurmountable 0-3 hole in the best-of-seven playoff series. And the Lightning didn't come close to matching them, falling flat in a 2-0 loss in Game 3 in front of an sellout crowd at Joe Louis Arena.

Tampa Bay still leads the first-round series 2-1 heading into Tuesday's Game 4, but its grip feels as slippery as the octopi tossed onto the ice.

"I'm not so sure myself, their coach or anybody in this room was picking this to be a sweep," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "So it went from us pinning them up against the wall to now it's a series.

"They were desperate to win a hockey game. We just came to play a hockey game."

The Red Wings shook things up with lineup changes, including replacing goaltender Jimmy Howard with Petr Mrazek, who starred against the Lightning in last year's first round. But this wasn't the case of a hot goalie stealing a game. Mrazek faced just 16 shots — seven combined in final two periods.

"I don't know if they needed a goaltender tonight, to be honest," Cooper said.

That was partly because the Lightning spent large portions of the game on the penalty kill, going 7-for-7. "It's hard to get chances when you're shorthanded for the whole game," goalie Ben Bishop said.

While the Lightning gave the Red Wings credit for their work defensively, center Tyler Johnson said it came down to compete level — Tampa Bay didn't have enough.

That included Johnson's red-hot line with Alex Killorn and Nikita Kucherov, which had scored seven of the team's eight goals in the first two games but had zero combined shots and eight penalty minutes Sunday. The Red Wings, taking advantage of having the second line change, used a new trio of Luke Glendening, Justin Abdelkader and Riley Sheahan, which made the Johnson line work defensively in combining for five shots.

"It's frustrating that we just didn't play our best," Johnson said. "We know we need to be better. The team needs to be better. It starts with us."

But it shouldn't end with them. The Lightning continued to struggle with secondary scoring, and its power play went 0-for-3.

Detroit defenseman Brendan Smith set the tone with a huge hit on Cedric Paquette three minutes in. But the Lightning weathered the storm in the first period, killing off a minute of a 5-on-3 power play. The Red Wings kept pushing, outshooting the Lightning 30-16. Andreas Athanasiou beat Bishop with a one-timer in the second, and Henrik Zetterberg pounced on a loose puck in the crease for a goal that withstood a review and a coach's challenge.

This time, the Lightning was taking frustration penalties at the buzzer.

"It's going to be a whole new ball game in a couple nights," Johnson said.

Red Wings 0 2 0 2
Lightning 0 0 0 0

 

FirstNone. PenaltiesCoburn, TB (tripping), 4:34; Helm, Det (embellishment), 4:34; Johnson, TB (tripping), 14:32; Palat, TB (tripping), 15:33.

Second1, Detroit, Athanasiou 1 (Tatar, Andersson), 12:42. 2, Detroit, Zetterberg 1, 17:22. PenaltiesSustr, TB (hooking), 5:26; Hedman, TB (slashing), 7:37; Zetterberg, Det (interference), 18:52.

ThirdNone. PenaltiesKucherov, TB (unsportsmanlike conduct), :58; Helm, Det (unsportsmanlike conduct), :58; Kronwall, Det (holding), 2:23; Johnson, TB (hooking), 3:20; Killorn, TB (tripping), 5:47; Datsyuk, Det (tripping), 14:20; Coburn, TB (interference), 17:43. ShotsTampa Bay 9-3-4—16. Detroit 12-11-7—30. PPsTampa Bay 0 of 3; Detroit 0 of 7. GoaliesTampa Bay, Bishop 2-1-0 (30 shots-28 saves). Detroit, Mrazek 1-0-0 (16-16). A20,027 (20,027). T16:51. Referees—Gord Dwyer, Eric Furlatt. LinesmenDerek Amell, Tim Nowak.

 
Comments
Lightning-Capitals: Washington forces Game 7 with 3-0 victory

Lightning-Capitals: Washington forces Game 7 with 3-0 victory

WASHINGTON — The Lightning let one get away Monday night. And it might cost Tampa Bay a chance at the Stanley Cup.So now there will be a Game 7 to decide the Eastern Conference. Maybe this is how it should be. Maybe this is how it's supposed to...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Lightning journal: Capitals had a shot at Jon Cooper

Lightning journal: Capitals had a shot at Jon Cooper

WASHINGTON — Interesting how things work out in the world of hockey.Back in 2012, the first NHL team to ever interview Jon Cooper for a head coaching job was actually the Washington Capitals. The Caps general manager at the time was George McPh...
Updated: 3 hours ago
History has been kind to Lightning in Game 7s

History has been kind to Lightning in Game 7s

WASHINGTON — There's nothing more delicious in sports than Game 7.Unless your team is playing in it. Then there's nothing more nerve-racking.Most sports fans watch a big game with a nice cold drink. But if your team is playing in a Game 7, the ...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Prepare yourselves: Golden Knights will be talk of the Stanley Cup final

Prepare yourselves: Golden Knights will be talk of the Stanley Cup final

WASHINGTON — It's incredible. Unbelievable, really. Maybe the best sports story in this country and the sport of hockey since 1980's Miracle on Ice.And, as a side note, if the Lightning reaches the Stanley Cup final, everyone in the country out...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Lightning-Capitals: Grading Tampa Bay’s Game 6 shutout loss

Lightning-Capitals: Grading Tampa Bay’s Game 6 shutout loss

Let's do it one more time, shall we?Game 7 it will be.If it matches Game 6, it will be extraordinary.RELATED: More Lightning coverageThe Lightning could not close the door on the Washington Capitals. The Caps, who apparently really don't want to lose...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Lightning-Capitals: Tom Jones’ takeaways from Washington’s Game 6 win

Lightning-Capitals: Tom Jones’ takeaways from Washington’s Game 6 win

Caps D Dmitry Orlov has one of the most wicked slap shots in hockey. When he stepped into one in the first period, Lightning D Ryan McDonagh threw his body in front of it and blocked it with his shoulder — just inches from his face. McDonagh sh...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Live blog: Lightning trailing in third period of Game 6

Live blog: Lightning trailing in third period of Game 6

  Follow our live coverage of the Eastern Conference final between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Washington Capitals. We'll have updates, analysis, photos, video and more on and off the ice from Times reporters, editors, sports columnists and photo j...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Lightning one win from Stanley Cup final

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Lightning one win from Stanley Cup final

The Lightning plays in Washington tonight with a chance to close out the series and advance to the Stanley Cup final. Tom Jones joins Rick Stroud to talk about the game and why Andrei Vasilevskiy and the defense is playing so well.Plus, the...
Published: 05/21/18
Lightning watch party tonight for Game 6

Lightning watch party tonight for Game 6

Tampa Bay Lightning fans can gather to witness the team's possible clinching of a Stanley Cup final berth tonight in downtown Tampa.The watch party for Game 6 in Washington starts at 6 p.m. at Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park.It will include three screen...
Published: 05/21/18
Stanley Cup-bound Vegas turning impossible into possible

Stanley Cup-bound Vegas turning impossible into possible

LAS VEGAS — Welcome to Impossible.Those words have been projected onto the ice in big, bold letters at T-Mobile Arena before each game during the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Well, the Vegas Golden Knights are turning impossible into possible.The stun...
Published: 05/21/18