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)

Tampa Bay Lightning beats New Jersey Devils 2-1

TAMPA — Keep this tidbit in your back pocket when you want to impress friends at a party:

With its 2-1 victory over the Devils on Friday night at the St. Pete Times Forum, the Lightning, according to the Elias Sports Bureau, became the first NHL team to win back-to-back games against opponents with eight-game winning streaks.

Coach Guy Boucher's eyes lit up when told.

"Ooh, I've got to tell the players," he said. "We always tell the players we're in the business of doing the impossible."

That's probably overstating it a bit, but the Lightning did make a statement as it ended its 12-game homestand at 7-3-2 in front of a boisterous announced crowd of 19,563.

Tampa Bay (36-18-7) won a game as tight-checking and choking defensively as a playoff game. And it beat what Boucher called the league's most disciplined team, which went in on a 16-1-2 run.

And though second-period goals in 54 seconds by Marty St. Louis and Simon Gagne, both high on the glove side of goalie Johan Hedberg, produced a 2-0 lead, Tampa Bay was a defensive bulldog and limited New Jersey to 20 shots.

"On a scale of 1 to 10?" goalie Dwayne Roloson said when asked to rate the defensive effort. "Probably a 13, 14. The guys played unbelievable. We stuck to our game plan and did exactly what our coach wanted us to do."

That included clogging the neutral zone, not turning over the puck and getting sticks on pucks and bodies into shooting lanes.

"Every time we tried to chip it back, their D was on the puck," Devils center Dainius Zubrus said. "It was not easy to create offense."

"They are," said Hedberg, who had allowed one goal in three previous games, "a really, really good hockey team."

That team pretty much shut down Ilya Kovalchuk.

The Devils star extended his points streak to 12 games with an assist on Mark Fayne's goal 8:13 into the third period. But he had just two shots while being watched for the most part by defensemen Randy Jones and Eric Brewer and center Dominic Moore.

Jones in the defensive zone in the second period even dislodged Kovalchuk from the puck and knocked him down.

"When you can, you have to be physical on him, because he can dance around you any time," Jones said. "So you have to be physical, and there was an opportunity."

It's not as if the Devils had zero chances. Roloson, who had 19 saves, stopped Kovalchuk and Nick Palmieri on breakaways. But Tampa Bay did not give up a shot in the final 2:10, and Jones and Brewer each had blocks.

"I loved the way we played the last five minutes, with aggressiveness and poise and confidence," Boucher said.

"Nobody was panicking. Nobody was screaming at refs. We weren't looking for anyone to help us. We were doing it."

And making history, too.

Lightning 0 2 0 2
Devils 0 0 1 1
Lightning 0 2 0 2
Devils 0 0 1 1

First PeriodNone. PenaltiesNone.

Second Period1, TB, St. Louis 23 (Downie, Stamkos), 2:20. 2, TB, Gagne 10, 3:14. PenaltiesArnott, NJ (hooking), 18:51.

Third Period3, New Jersey, Fayne 4 (Kovalchuk, Zajac), 8:13. PenaltiesBergenheim, TB (holding), 2:01; Tedenby, NJ (holding), 3:31. Shots on GoalNew Jersey 7-5-8—20. TB 8-15-7—30. Power-play opportunitiesNew Jersey 0 of 1; TB 0 of 2. GoaliesNew Jersey, Hedberg 13-11-2 (30 shots-28 saves). TB, Roloson 17-19-2 (20-19). A19,563 (19,758). T2:23. Referees—Paul Devorski, Rob Martell. LinesmenBrian Murphy, Pierre Racicot.

Tampa Bay Lightning beats New Jersey Devils 2-1 02/25/11 [Last modified: Saturday, February 26, 2011 12:28am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Criticism part of the game for Bucs' Gerald McCoy, who is chasing 'ghosts'

    Bucs

    Who crossed the line with their criticism of Gerald McCoy?

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive tackle Gerald McCoy jokes with teammates during the first day of training camp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Friday, July 28, 2017.
  2. 2-year-old girl shows football team how its done

    Sports

    ST. PETERSBURG — Football players may dread summer workouts, but not two-year-old Sophie Rosendale. She loves joining her father, St. Petersburg offensive line coach Mike Rosendale, three times a week for the Green Devils summer conditioning. Not only does she shout encouragement like her dad, she also straps on …

    Sophie Rosendale, 2, front, warms up with offensive lineman during practice at St. Petersburg High School, Wednesday. Rosendale is the daughter of offensive line coach Mike Rosendale. "She has been coming to practice for about one year," said Rosendale who has been a coach at the the school for 10 seasons. "She likes to show the players the proper techniques." [Photo/  Mike Rosendale]
  3. Rays add another piece to bullpen, acquiring RHP Steve Cishek for Erasmo Ramirez

    Blogs

    The Rays made another deal to change the look of their bullpen, acquiring RHP Steve Cishek from the Mariners for RHP Erasmo Ramirez.

    Cishek, 31, has a 3,15 ERA and .183 opponents average in 23 games for the Mariners this season after returning in mid-May from October hip surgery, and after allowing three runs …

    Steve Cishek has a 3.15 ERA in 20 games for the Mariners this season after returning in mid-May from off-season hip surgery.
  4. Why don't defensive players get more Heisman Trophy love?

    Blogs

    In a story we posted online earlier today (and coming to your doorstep in Sunday's Tampa Bay Times), I made my case for why Florida State safety Derwin James should be a preseason …

    Boston College defensive end Harold Landry didn't get any Heisman love last year, despite leading the country in sacks.