Lightning penalties lead to a loss to Winnipeg

by Gary Shelton on January 7, 2023

in general

Cirelli broke his scoreless streak./TIM WIRT

Saturday, 4 a.m.

Most nights, they do not need scoring. Most nights, they do not need goaltending. Most nights, they do not need special teams.

What the Tampa Bay Lighting need, more than anything, is a Get-Out-of-Jail Free card.

The Lightning could not stay out of the penalty box Friday night in Winnipeg, and it cost them a 4-2 game against the Jets. The Bolts were outnumbered for most of the night, giving up six power plays, including two five-on-three situations in their loss.

Content beyond this point is for members only.

Already a member? To view the rest of this column, sign in using the handy "Sign In" button located in the upper right corner of the blog (it's at the far right of the navigation bar under Gary's photo). Not a member? It's easy to subscribe so you can view the rest of this column and all other premium content on

Kucherov gave the Bolts a lead./TIM WIRT

It was like watching outtakes of The Shawshank Redemption. There were so many penalties you half expected to hear that Donovan Smith was called for holding.

“It’s a complete lack of discipline," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "It was embarrassing what we did. How many five-on-threes are you up against in one season? You can count them on one hand.

"And we gave up two five on threes in one game? That’s unacceptable. That shouldn’t happen. Good on Winnipeg.  It was a nothing game going on that could have been 0-0 and a shooyout. They stayed disciplined — let's stay back and wait for Tampa by screw it up and they did."

Neither team scored when it was five-on-five.

The Bolts had leads of 1-0 and 2-1, but neither held. The Jets scored twice on the lengthy five-on-threes, one when it was four-on-four and once into an empty net when they had four-on-six.

On the second five-on-three, Anthony Cirelli lost his stick, further limiting the Bolts.

"Tell me what happened in the game other than us taking penalties and giving them opportunities. Hopefully this one hurts a lot. I get the last one . Late night travel back to back. But this one, that shouldn’t happen.’’

The Bolts have now lost two in a row. They return to Amalie Arena to face Columbus at 7 p.m. on Tuesday night.

Previous post:

Next post: