Lightning, Flames respond differently to bad losses

Lightning and Flames react differently during Wednesday practices after both suffered bad losses Tuesday.tpc
It was a rough loss Tuesday for goalie Mike Smith and the Flames. [The Canadian Press]
It was a rough loss Tuesday for goalie Mike Smith and the Flames. [The Canadian Press]
Published Feb. 1, 2018|Updated Feb. 1, 2018

CALGARY, Alberta — The Lightning and Flames meet tonight at the Saddledome with both looking to bounce back from bad losses Tuesday.

The Lightning was outplayed by the Jets in a 3-1 loss in Winnipeg when it did not push back after the Jets seized control early in the second period.

The Flames lost 4-2 to the visiting Golden Knights despite leading 2-1 with less than two minutes to play.

Flames D Michael Frolik chased down a loose puck behind his own net and tried to pass it to fellow D T.J. Brodie in front of the net instead of rimming it around the boards. Brodie wasn't expecting the pass, and goalie Mike Smith — the former Lightning netminder — had to stop it with his stick. That's when Erika Haula jumped on the puck and shot it past Smith to tie the score.

The Knights took the lead 10 seconds later and added an empty netter to complete the comeback.

It was the first time all season the Flames lost while leading after two.

Both the Lightning and Flames reacted differently to the losses during Wednesday's practice.

The Lightning, still in Winnipeg, went hard for 70 minutes, engaging in puck battles aimed at upping its compete level.

The Flames held a short practice followed by a long meeting.

"You can't control what happens, but you can control how you react to it," Flames coach Glen Gulutzan told reporters after Wednesday's practice. "You're in charge of that."

The Lightning (34-13-3) enters tonight's game with the most points in the NHL, 71. The Knights (30-13-8), who face the Jets in Winninpeg, are one point behind the Lightning.

The Flames (25-17-8, 58 points) earned 18 of a possible 22 points heading into the All-Star Break. Tuesday's loss was their first in regulation in January.

Some notes:

While the Lightning's power play is in a four-game drought, the Flames are on a 1-for-19 slide with the man advantage.

The Lightning held an optional skate this morning. Among those on the ice were Kucherov and D Mikhail Sergachev.

F Chris Kunitz was moved to the line with Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov during Wednesday's practice.

D Dan Girardi, who went to the locker room during the first period Tuesday, sat out Wednesday for body maintenance.

F Yanni Gourde was a runner-up for the NHL's rookie of the month for January. Gourde had six goals and 2 assists in 12 games. C Matthew Barzal of the Islanders was named the top rookie after scoring three goals and assisting on 12 others in 15 games.