The Tampa Bay Lightning lost to the Nashville Predators 7-4.
It’s always very frustrating when you can’t watch a game. Radio is fine, if you’re familiar with the team and the announcer, but you do miss a lot of what’s going on. But that’s the same with watching games on TV versus watching games live – there is so much going on behind the play that you just don’t get to see on TV. In the case of this game against the Preds, it was probably for the best that it wasn’t televised after all.
The first period started the game off well enough. The Lightning were up 2-1 at the end of the first. Vincent Lecavalier and Steven Stamkos had scored the two Lightning goals, and things seemed to be headed in the right direction.
And then things went terribly wrong somehow in the second. Nashville scored five goals that period. Antero Niittymaki was pulled after letting in four total goals on 14 shots. And then Mike Smith let in two goals on the first two shots he faced. It might’ve been nice to see exactly where and why the collapse happened just for that – as ugly as it probably was.
The best player for the Lightning was by far Lecavalier, from what I could tell. He scored two goals – his first two-goal game of the season – and one of those was his first power play goal of the season as well. He had seven shots on goal out of the team’s total 34, and was 15-9 (63%) in the faceoff circle. The strange part was that, usually when Vinny’s having a good game, the rest of the team typically feeds off of that and plays better, too. In this case, they didn’t seem to. At. All.
They dominated in many ways statistically. They out-shot Nashville 34-27. They won the majority of their faceoffs, winning 57%. They out-hit the Predators 21-17. But they couldn’t play defense to save their lives.
Highlights from NHL.tv
The next game is Thursday, 17 December, at the Detroit Red Wings. Starting time is 7:30 pm Eastern. Let’s see who else off the Wings will get injured, shall we? (Hopefully no one, but that seems to be their thing so far this season.)
Lightning vs Predators coverage [SB Nation]
On the Forecheck [SB Nation Nashville Predators site]
Lightning vs Predators boxscore [TSN]