Bolts impressive in beating Boston, 4-0

by Gary Shelton on April 4, 2018 · 2 comments

in general

Vasilevskiy recorded his eighth shutout./JEFFREY S. KING

Vasilevskiy recorded his eighth shutout./JEFFREY S. KING

Wednesday, 4 p.m.

There was something familiar about the way they skated. You could have sworn you had seen the way they blocked shots before. The way they passed, the way they celebrated was something from your memories.

Yep. That was the Tampa Bay Lightning  that you remember.

The Lightning, struggling as of late, returned to their early-season brilliance Tuesday night, winning an impressive 4-0 contest against the Boston Bruins at Amalie Arena. It was the first time Tampa Bay beat Boston in four tries.

Hedman celebrates his 16th goal./JEFFREY S. KING

Hedman celebrates his 16th goal./JEFFREY S. KING

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Point slides through the goal for Bolts./JEFFREY S. KING

Point slides through the goal for Bolts./JEFFREY S. KING

“Nobody wants to go through a season and get swept by anybody, especially somebody that you’re fighting for a division title," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "As I said before the game before this set it up, I thought the first two times we played them they kind of manhandled us a little bit but they didn’t the last time in their building.”

Kucherov bears down on Rank./JEFFREY S. KING

Kucherov bears down on Rank./JEFFREY S. KING

Boston and Tampa Bay now are tied with 110 points (a franchise record for Tampa Bay). The Bruins have three games left to the Bolts two, but Boston plays a tougher schedule. The Bruins play Florida twice and Ottawa once. The Bolts play Buffalo and Carolina.

“We have 110 points now and to get that way you can’t be riding the highs and lows," Cooper said. "The boys have been riding pretty steady here for a long time. Sure there have been some dips here and there, but who’s not going to have those? The big thing was proving to ourselves can we get back to the top of our game that got us where we were for most of our season, and they most certainly did that tonight.”

This was the Lightning that threatened to run away and hide in the early

Gourde slams Kevan Miller into boards./JEFFREY S. KING

Gourde slams Kevan Miller into boards./JEFFREY S. KING

season. Andrei Vasilevskiy pitched his eighth shutout of the year, and the team got goals from Brayden Point, Victor Hedman, Chris Kunitz and J.T. Miller.

"We want to finish in first place," Hedman said. "The first  two periods were some of the best hockey we've played all year. I was very happy with the way we played."

Vasilevskiy won his 43rd game of the season. It was his eighth shutout, also a franchise record.

He’s such a good goalie and when he’s on his game, it’s really hard to beat

Miller scores again for Bolts./JEFFREY S. KING

Miller scores again for Bolts./JEFFREY S. KING

him," Point said. Even in practice when he’s on his game, it almost seems impossible. He deserves all the accolades he gets.”

The Bolts were pleased with their effort.

“I think that was huge for us,"  forward Ryan Callahan said. "It’s been a while since we played a full 60 minutes like that. What I like the most is that we defended, we were above, we didn’t give up any odd-man rushes. We defended really well in our end even when they had some pressure in our end.”

The Bolts conclude their home schedule Friday night against Buffalo. The puck drops at 7:30 p.m.

Kunitz  )14) tucks the puck into tenet./JEFFREY S. KING

Kunitz (14) tucks the puck into tenet./JEFFREY S. KING

 

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Bill MYERS April 4, 2018 at 7:31 pm

So glad that the new old gang decided to show up! The play offs start next Wensday1 I hope the Lightning can sustain that level of play all the way to Sir Stanley’s Cup! GO BOLTS!

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Gary Shelton April 5, 2018 at 8:06 am

It would be nice, wouldn’t it?

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