Lightning survive a shoot-out against New Jersey

by Gary Shelton on October 31, 2019 · 0 comments

in general

Johnson scored in overtime for the winner./JEFFREY S. KING

Thursday, 4 a.m.

Is there such a thing as Arena Hockey?

You know, wild and reckless, with barely anY defense. Fireworks and lasers beams. Circus animals. The sort of thing.

You know, like Wednesday night's game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and New Jersey Davis.

The Lightning finally won it, 7-6 on Tyler Johnson's goal 76 seconds into overtime.

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The Bolts came from two goals down. They allowed a tying goal with 7.4 seconds to play. They took five more penalties. Goaltender Curtis McElhinnEy got his first victory. Kyle Palmieri scored a hat trick for the Devils. Ondrej Palat scored two goals for the Lightning. Whew.

"Adversity comes at you in a bunch pf different ways," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "It came at us a little bit (Tuesday) night because of the amount of players we lost. We had quite a different lineup. I think four guys were making their season debuts in the NHL Three of them for sure.

"Did the game turn out in the way we wanted in the end? Sure it did. Did we take too many penalties again that sucked a little bit of the momentum? That’s what happens in the third period. The shift in ice time changes when you’re killing that many penalties. You lose a lot of your rhythm."

The Bolts improved to 6-4-2 on the season.

 “It was just absurd," McElhineny said. "It was like tracking a ping pong ball for second and the third (periods)."

McElhinney stopped 36 shots for his win. In his four starrs, he has faced 40 or more shots three times."

"I was proud of the way the guys rallied to bail us," Cooper said. "You can credit a lot of that to McElhinney and what he did. There are still holes in our game. We were leaking oil a little bit in the third, but they found a way. Eventually good teams find a way."

Cooper suggested the Lightning might be talking too much about penalties.

"We probably shouldn’t make a big a deal about it," Cooper said. "We’ve harped on it so much.  It may get into the guys' heads that when they’re trying so hard not take a penalty, they take one. I can’t agree with them all. When you take one it kind of snowballs a little for us."

The Lightning play at the Islanders Friday night at 7 p.m.


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