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 thrashed 7-3 by Buffalo Sabres

TAMPA — It should not have been a surprise the Lightning was smoked 7-3 by the Sabres Monday night at the Tampa Bay Times Forum.

Tampa Bay was without eight regulars because of injuries, its lineup included seven who played in the minors this season and the Sabres are a motivated bunch that smells the playoffs.

What was a surprise was the seeming lack of fight from a team that has a deserved reputation as one that doesn't quit.

"We didn't show up. We didn't battle," defenseman Bruno Gervais said. "We need to get better. We need to take some pride and bounce back for the next game."

"You've got to respect the game," wing Marty St. Louis said. "When it's game time, you come to play."

The Sabres did and the win added to their 15-5-5 streak that has them two points from the final playoff spot in the East.

The Lightning (32-33-7), losers of six of seven games, solidified its position at the bottom of the Southeast Division and remained two points from the bottom of the conference.

That can't be easy for players to wrap their heads around, especially after being a game from last season's Stanley Cup final.

Gervais, though, called that and talk of injuries "easy excuses."

The Lightning got contributions from Gervais and Ryan Malone, who had a goal and assist each; and Trevor Smith, who scored his first goal of the season.

But Tampa Bay, outshot 38-27, allowed the Sabres way too much time to make plays, and defensive breakdowns led to numerous goals.

Goaltender Dustin Tokarski was pulled from his second straight start 8:16 into the second period after allowing four goals on 15 shots but was hung out to dry by his teammates.

Particularly consequential were defensive zone turnovers by Brendan Mikkelson and Gervais which led to first-period goals by Drew Stafford and Jason Pominville for a 2-0 Buffalo lead.

"It felt like we gave it to them," Gervais said. "We didn't make them earn it."

It was just as bad during Buffalo's four-goal second period for a 6-2 lead as turnovers and defensive breakdowns were the fuel the Sabres needed.

"That's what you get," Lightning coach Guy Boucher said. "Guys are trying hard and the American League guys are doing everything they can and our top guys have been pushing for so long, it's tough to ask for a perfect game when guys are put in slots they've never been in."

But it's not too much to ask for a competitive effort.

"It's about respecting the people who pay for a ticket," Boucher said.

"We owe it to one another," St. Louis said, "to not give in and play hard."

Sabres 2 4 1 7
Lightning 0 2 1 3

First1, Buffalo, Stafford 15 (Ehrhoff), 11:31. 2, Buffalo, Pominville 26 (Hodgson, Vanek), 15:50 (pp). PenaltiesHedman, TB (holding), 15:10.

Second3, Buffalo, Foligno 4 (Ennis, Stafford), 1:09. 4, Tampa Bay, Gervais 5 (Purcell), 7:12. 5, Buffalo, Tropp 3 (Vanek, Hodgson), 8:16. 6, Tampa Bay, Smith 1 (Malone, Gervais), 14:14. 7, Buffalo, Foligno 5 (Stafford, Ennis), 16:22 (pp). 8, Buffalo, Boyes 6 (McCormick, Sulzer), 17:00. PenaltiesStamkos, TB (high-sticking), 10:12; Connolly, TB (tripping), 15:49; Regehr, Buf (hooking), 17:11.

Third9, Buffalo, Pominville 27, :17. 10, Tampa Bay, Malone 14 (Brewer), 14:57. PenaltiesSegal, TB (high-sticking), 4:22; Sekera, Buf (interference), 6:10. Shots on GoalBuffalo 9-18-11—38. Tampa Bay 6-9-12—27. Power-play opportunitiesBuffalo 2 of 4; Tampa Bay 0 of 2. GoaliesBuffalo, Miller 26-18-7 (27 shots-24 saves). Tampa Bay, Tokarski 1-3-1 (15-11), Roloson (8:16 second, 23-20). A17,212 (19,204). T2:28.

Sabres 7

Lightning 3

Tampa Bay Lightning thrashed 7-3 by Buffalo Sabres 03/19/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, March 20, 2012 8:08am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. State baseball: Bishop McLaughlin bows out of Class 3A semifinals

    Baseballpreps

    FORT MYERS — One inning into Bishop McLaughlin's Class 3A state semifinal against Fort Myers Canterbury, things could not have gone much better for the Hurricanes. They grabbed a quick one-run lead and Canterbury ace Sam Keating was forced out of the game with a nagging neck injury.

     Chris Berglund (18) of Bishop McLaughlin, at bat during second inning of the FHSAA class 3A semi-final on Friday May 26, 2017 at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers, Fla. Canterbury, Fort Myers, defeated Bishop 7 to 4. Canterbury will play in the 3A championship tomorrow.
  2. Bucs WR DeSean Jackson knows only one direction: full speed ahead

    Sports

    TAMPA — DeSean Jackson is the "1."

    Actually, Jackson, the Bucs' latest weapon for quarterback Jameis Winston, with his blazing speed and game-changing splash plays, wears No. 11 in games.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver DeSean Jackson participates in an "open OTA practice" at One Buc Place, the team's training facility, in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, May 23, 2017.
  3. Video preview: Rays open tough road trip facing Twins tonight

    Blogs

    After splitting a four-game series against the Angels to wrap up a winning homestand, the Rays tonight open a nine-game, 10-day roadtrip with the first game of the weekend series with the Twins:

  4. For starters: Rays, Archer take on surprising Twins to open road trip

    Blogs

    UPDATE, 6:37: Cash said it was a combination of wanting to keep Dickerson, who is a team-best . 358 against lefties, in the lineup and Santiago's splits. ... Cash said there was nothing new on the injured players back at the Trop, with Brad Boxberger still slated to throw live BP on Monday in Port Charlotte, …

  5. Hard to believe NFL overtime change is about player safety

    Bucs

    If someone's house was engulfed in flames, would you hand him a fire extinguisher?

    Of course not.

    Fans await the beginning of overtime between the Patriots and Falcons in Super Bowl LI in February. [Associated Press]