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Tampa Bay Lightning loses to Philadelphia Flyers 5-2

PHILADELPHIA — It would be easy to look at the turnovers that cost the Lightning two second-period goals as the turning point in Saturday night's 5-2 loss to the Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center.

But that, Vinny Lecavalier said, would be missing the point.

The game might have been different, Tampa Bay's captain said, had the power play come through in the clutch.

Instead, the Lightning (12-15-2) failed on two key chances to add to a 1-0 lead and got zero — zero — shots in the process.

"You make it 2-0, it could be a different game," Lecavalier said. "That's where games get turned around."

The turnaround came when Danny Briere and Jaromir Jagr — off turnovers by Bruno Gervais and Nate Thompson, respectively — scored in 34 seconds to give the Flyers a 2-1 lead 3:12 into the second period.

Philadelphia's third goal in the period, by Wayne Simmonds, ricocheted past goaltender Mathieu Garon off the skate of Tampa Bay defenseman Brett Clark.

Lecavalier scored a power-play goal to make it 3-2 55 seconds into the third period, but the downward spiral was too much to overcome.

Matt Carle's power-play goal four minutes later made it 4-2, and the Flyers outshot Tampa Bay 32-19, including 11-4 in the third period and 26-11 in the second and third combined.

But the lack of a timely power-play goal — and that Tampa Bay mustered just three shots in 6:44 playing with the extra man on four power plays — irked the Lightning most because it has been a season-long problem.

"It's frustrating," center Steven Stamkos said. "We're trying different looks. We're just not getting enough shots. It's not helping us win hockey games like it has in the past."

The power play entered Saturday 24th in the 30-team league at 14.3 percent. Its road power play was 27th at 10.2 percent and including Saturday is on a 3 for 33 skid.

Last season Tampa Bay's power play was sixth overall at 20.5 percent and ninth on the road at 18.4 percent.

This season's team also seems not as determined to get into the slot, create traffic and battle.

"You've got to go back to basics," coach Guy Boucher said. "It's not about the plays. It's about grinding it out and getting ugly."

Tampa Bay's turnovers were ugly. And Briere and Jagr both beat Garon high to the glove side, where Briere said the scouting report said to shoot.

"We can't sabotage ourselves," Boucher said.

That said, it was Tampa Bay's failure on the power play that set the stage.

"You score a big goal," Lecavalier said, "and it's a totally different game."

Flyers 0 3 2 5
Lightning 1 0 1 2
Flyers 0 3 2 5
Lightning 1 0 1 2

First Period1, Tampa Bay, Shannon 2 (Moore, Hedman), 11:52. PenaltiesMarshall, Phi (slashing), 2:36; Brewer, TB (cross-checking), 6:15; Meszaros, Phi (hooking), 15:27; Meszaros, Phi (roughing), 20:00.

Second Period2, Philadelphia, Briere 9 (Simmonds), 2:38. 3, Philadelphia, Jagr 10 (Giroux, Hartnell), 3:12. 4, Philadelphia, Simmonds 7 (Giroux, Timonen), 14:49 (pp). PenaltiesGervais, TB (hooking), 8:49; Lecavalier, TB (high-sticking), 12:55; Bergeron, TB (high-sticking), 15:38.

Third Period5, Tampa Bay, Lecavalier 11 (Bergeron, Malone), :55 (pp). 6, Philadelphia, Carle 4 (Briere, van Riemsdyk), 4:55 (pp). 7, Philadelphia, Hartnell 14 (Jagr), 19:32 (en). PenaltiesCarle, Phi (interference), :11; Downie, TB (boarding), 4:34. Shots on GoalTampa Bay 8-7-4—19. Philadelphia 6-16-10—32. Power-play opportunitiesTampa Bay 1 of 4; Philadelphia 2 of 5. GoaliesTampa Bay, Garon 6-7-1 (31 shots-27 saves). Philadelphia, Bryzgalov 13-5-2 (16-14), Bobrovsky (6:45 third, 3-3). A19,772 (19,537). T2:27. Referees—Dave Jackson, Justin St. Pierre. LinesmenRyan Galloway, Dan Schachte.

Flyers 5

Lightning 2

Tampa Bay Lightning loses to Philadelphia Flyers 5-2 12/10/11 [Last modified: Saturday, December 10, 2011 11:40pm]

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