Bolts give up six in OT loss to Buffalo

by Gary Shelton on February 24, 2023

in general

Colton forced the game into overtime./TIM WIRT

Friday, 4 a.m.

Maybe what the Tampa Bay Lightning needs are better cornerbacks. Maybe a safety or two.

Something, anything, to stop teams from going deep on them.

Take Thursday night's 6-5 loss to Buffalo in overtime. The Sabres spent most of the evening slipping behind the Lightning defense and sprinting down the ice for goals. Buffalo had just 23 shots, but six of them ended up in the net.

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Point scored his 34th goal./TIM WIRT

"It’s the Lightning of yesteryear coming out and everyone wants to get their points," said Lightning coach Jon Cooper. It’s all about playing offense and not playing the other way. You start learning hard lessons like this. That’s what happened tonight.

"We gave up multiple breakaways and multiple odd man rushes. So you ask me: Was it a game of mistakes? There were a lot of them tonight and they all ended up in the back of the net."

Even in overtime, the Bolts seemed to have an advantage. They had a power play going when Steven Stamkos went to the ice and Ilya Lyubushkin had a breakaway and scored. It was his first goal of the year.

The Bolts trailed 4-2 and 5-3 in the third period but rallied to tie, which made the final result a little harder to take.

"If we want to play good hockey down the stretch, we’ve got to figure it out now," said Pat Maroon. "We can't give up four breakaways. We can’t turn pucks over. It’s not good enough. 

The Bolts scored five times on 41 shots, including goals by Steven Stamkos, Victor Hedman, Brayden Point, Anthony Cirelli and Ross Colton.

Tage Thompson had a hat trick for Buffalo.

The Bolts now go on the road to face Detroit Saturday night at 8 p.m.

Stamkos' overtime flub led to Buffalo goal./TIM WIRT

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