Rare defeat leaves Lightning’s Cooper perturbed

by Gary Shelton on December 30, 2017 · 0 comments

in general

Budaj has Voracek slide into him./STEVEN MUNCIE

Budaj has Voracek slide into him./STEVEN MUNCIE

Saturday, 2 a.m.

The Tampa Bay Lightning hasn't lost very often this season. Still, coach Jon Cooper doesn't like it very much.

"We sucked," Cooper said. "They were way better than us. They deserved the two points. We didn't deserve anything."

The Lightning, 27-8-2, hasn't played many games in which they deserved such reviews. After all, Tampa Bay has still won 10 of its last 12.

Budaj rolls over in pain after colliding with a Flyers player./STEVEN MUNCIE

Budaj rolls over in pain after colliding with a Flyers player./STEVEN MUNCIE

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Jon Cooper wasn't happy with what he saw./STEVEN MUNCIE

Jon Cooper wasn't happy with what he saw./STEVEN MUNCIE

But Friday night, it wasn't there for a Lightning team that sputtered in a 5-3 loss.

"We sucked," Cooper repeated. "Just name them (the ways). Penalty kill ... sucked. Forecheck ... sucked.  Didn't shoot the puck ... sucked. Turnovers ... sucked. Didn't defend  ... sucked. . Coaching ... sucked. You can keep going down the list."

Braydon Coburn moves up the ice./STEVEN MUNCIE

Braydon Coburn moves up the ice./STEVEN MUNCIE

On a more serious note, Cooper repeated that the Flyers deserved the win.

“We played someone that made us that way. We could of gotten out of it. Every time we tried to get going, we had a really good kind of spurt at the end of the second period. We kind of generated life. It’s funny how it works. Last night, we score late in the second and early in third and what does Philly do to us? It just sucked the life out of us. We looked a little tired, a little step behind. I give our guys credit. We battled back and made it close at the end.:

The Bolts got 29 saves from backup goaltender Peter Budaj, who had to leave the game following a leg injury in the third period.

Point and Giroux exchange words after a penalty./STEVEN MUNCIE

Point and Giroux exchange words after a penalty./STEVEN MUNCIE

Tampa Bay got goals from Steven Stamkos, Brayden Point and Tyler Johnson. But Philly took over in the third (outshooting the Bolts 14-7), including an empty-netter at the end.

“It’s going to be a boring answer, but we didn’t play well," Stamkos said. "Simple. We didn’t execute, didn’t deserve to win, didn’t have the will to win and you’re not going to win when you don’t have those things.”

The players were not in denial of what had happened.

“We know what we did wrong," Tyler Johnson said. "There’s times when you win games and you just don’t deserve them. Tonight we didn’t deserve to win, and we didn’t win, so we’ve got to be better and we have to learn from this.”

The Lightning now goes on the road for a five-game trip. They start their trip with a Sunday game against Columbus at 5:30 p.m.

Tyler Johnson scores a short hand goal./STEVEN MUNCIE

Tyler Johnson scores a short-handed goal./STEVEN MUNCIE

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