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)

Showing up at the start boosts Lightning to clinching win (w/video)

TAMPA — Watching the Lightning struggle in the first period in back-to-back games against the Islanders in New York, coach Jon Cooper quipped that his team needed to realize the games started at 7 p.m., not 8.

Sunday, Tampa Bay flipped the script with an impressive opening 20 minutes, taking a two-goal lead that set the tone for a clinching 4-0 win in Game 5 of its second-round playoff series. After D Victor Hedman opened the scoring six minutes in, C Brian Boyle added a dagger with just more than a minute left in the first, roofing a shot from near the right post.

"It was big," Boyle said of the Lightning's first. "We were playing well early. It was big to get the goal, and to get another one was big.

"You see how (G Ben Bishop) stood on his head when they got goals and they got leads (in New York), but we kept (the Islanders' leads) at one, and that was important in our comebacks (to win both games) because we didn't have many opportunities. It's important to try and build on your lead, and (we) continued to push."

After allowing 32 combined shots in the first periods of Games 3 and 4, the Lightning surrendered just six in Sunday's first period.

REST UP: The Lightning played 26 of 28 possible games in last year's playoffs, which likely took its toll by the end in the Stanley Cup final.

But after winning its first two series this year in five games apiece, Tampa Bay is looking at nearly another week off before the Eastern Conference final begins, likely next weekend, against either the Penguins or Capitals. The Lightning had about a week off between its first-round series with Detroit and the Islanders series. It is off today, with a potential for another off day this week, too. The Penguins-Capitals series continues Tuesday with Game 6. Pittsburgh is up 3-2.

"Not a bad time to have some time off," Bishop said. "We'll wait and see who we play. Both of those teams are great opponents, so we'll just watch and relax for a couple days."

LINING UP: D Slater Koekkoek played in his fourth straight game and D Luke Witkowski his second as the Lightning went with seven defensemen again. Koekkoek, who has seemed to supplant in the lineup Nikita Nesterov (scratched for the second straight game), logged 9:49 of ice time. Witkowski played 4:17, two minutes more than he did in Friday's playoff debut.

RW Jonathan Marchessault returned to the lineup, replacing scratched RW Mike Blunden. RW Erik Condra and D Matt Taormina were also scratched.

NUTS AND BOLTS: C Valtteri Filppula had another unsung performance, winning 11 of 13 faceoffs and playing 19:32. … The Lightning penalty kill was 2-for-2, including killing off a power play in the first two minutes of the game. "It's not necessarily how many, but timely (penalty kills)," Bishop said. … C Tyler Johnson's second-period assist gave him a league-high-matching nine this postseason. RW Jonathan Drouin got his eighth.

Times correspondent Roger Mooney contributed to this report.

Brian Boyle, right, is ready to share the joy of his first-period goal with Cedric Paquette. Boyle scores with 1:19 left in the first for a 2-0 Lightning lead.

LOREN ELLIOTT | Times

Brian Boyle, right, is ready to share the joy of his first-period goal with Cedric Paquette. Boyle scores with 1:19 left in the first for a 2-0 Lightning lead.

Showing up at the start boosts Lightning to clinching win (w/video) 05/08/16 [Last modified: Monday, May 9, 2016 8:44am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Alex Faedo, Florida advance to face LSU in College World Series finals

    College

    OMAHA, Neb. — Alex Faedo pitched three-hit ball for 71/3 innings in a second straight strong performance against TCU, and Florida moved to the College World Series finals with a 3-0 win Saturday night.

    Florida’s Austin Langworthy scores on a single by Mike Rivera in the second inning during a 3-0 victory over TCU.
  2. Jones: Bucs need success to get national respect

    Bucs

    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones offers up his Two Cents on the world of sports.

    No respect

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter walks the field during the second day of mandatory minicamp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, June 14, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  3. Rays journal: Jumbo Diaz falters after getting within a strike of ending rally

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Saturday's game got away starting with a leadoff walk in the seventh inning by Rays LHP Jose Alvarado, who was brought in exclusively to face Baltimore's lefty-swinging Seth Smith.

    Rays reliever Jumbo Diaz wipes his face as he walks off the mound after the Orioles score four during the seventh inning to give them a 7-3 lead. Diaz was one strike away from working out of the jam before he allowed a two-run double and a two-run homer on back-to-back pitches.
  4. Rookie Jake Faria dissatisfied with performance in Rays' loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The rookie pitcher walked to his locker Saturday after tossing the fourth quality start in as many tries to begin his career. He held the potent Orioles bats to three runs and for six innings gave his team a chance to win.

    Orioles third baseman Manny Machado tags out the Rays’ Mallex Smith at third after a rundown in the first inning.
  5. Roger Mooney's takeaways from Saturday's Rays-Orioles game

    The Heater

    It was refreshing to see RHP Jacob Faria take the blame after the loss even though he gave the Rays a chance to win. Too often young pitchers are encouraged by what they did and not necessarily the outcome, but Faria, making just his fourth big-league start, came to the Trop to win, didn't, and pointed the finger …