Strong third period leads Lightning win

by Gary Shelton on December 9, 2022

in general

Elliott won despite a lap full of opponents./TIM WIRT

Friday, 4 a.m.

When they are on their game, this is how the third period looks. Smart. Efficient. Deadly.

Say this for the Tampa Bay Lightning. When they are at their best, they close the door. They smother. They swarm.

The Bolts again dominated a third period Thursday night, scoring three times to close out a 5-2 victory over the Nashville Predators. The Preds were able to get off 17 shots during the period, but backup goalie Brian Ellliott was able to turn them all back.

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Point had another two-goal game./TIM WIRT

The Bolts, disappointed in their previous game, a loss to Detroit, came out strong, scoring two goals in the first 2:53. But Nashville was able to come back to tie the game in the second.

The Bolts seemed to be unfazed. They got third period goals from Brayden Point (his second of the game), Nick Paul and Brandon Hagel to close to the game.

"We didn’t play our best," said Lightning coach Jon Cooper. "That first period we came out and dictated play. The first five minutes of the second period, we had the puck the whole time. We didn’t shoot and we let them off the hook. They pushed back. They’re a good hockey team. We got a little frustrated that things weren’t going the way we wanted them to."

Elliott was the star of the period. He won his sixth straight game in relief, turning away 34 shots on the night.

Point scored two goals for the fourth time this season. He has 13 on the year.

The Lightning is home on Saturday afternoon against the Florida Panthers.

Hagel scored a short-handed goal./TIM WIRT

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