Tonight's game was an early "something's gotta give" affair as both the Lightning and the so far better-than-most-people-expected Flames came in riding three-game winning streaks.
"Yeah, they're a very good team. They have a lot of skill, they play a very structured game. Tough team to play against, tough team to get opportunities against." - Lightning forward Tyler Johnson
Calgary came out hot, registering four shots on goal within the first minute. But the Lightning opened the scoring at 9:55 when Cedric Paquete scored his first NHL goal, thanks to an assist from Jonathan Drouin.
"I thought we moved the puck well in the offensive zone, me Vladdy and Jo, and I just tried to jam the net and it went in. I think I will remember it for the rest of my life. It's a great moment for me." - Paquette
The Flames tied things up at 15:22 on a goal from Jiri Hudler, who was assisted by T.J. Brodie and Mark Giordano.
The teams would head into the first intermission tied at one.
The Lightning regained the lead at 1:01 of the second on Paquette's second goal of the night, this time getting help from Vladislav Namestnikov and Jason Garrison. Paquette had quite a game, contributing a spectacular blocked shot later in the period.
The Bolts opened things up at 4:02 with Brian Boyle scoring the team's forst shorthanded goal of the season, stealing the puck at the blue line, skating in alone on Calgary goaltender Jonas Hiller and then swatting home his own rebound.
Any breathing easy that resulted from a two-goal lead disappeared 20 seconds later as Sean Monahan cashed in on the power play still in effect. Johnny Gaudreau and Giordano were credited with assists,
The Lightning would hold a 3-2 lead going into the third.
At the :40 mark, Tampa Bay's most productive line, The Triplets, if you will, got in on the act with Tyler Johnson scoring from Nikita Kucherov and Ondrej Palat.
At 2:25 Johnson would contribute a pretty spectacular blocked shot of his own to help the cause.
At 17:50, Valtteri Filppula finished things off with an unassisted empty netter.
Lightning goalie Ben Bishop stopped 29 of the 31 shots he faced, not allowing a goal over the final 35:38.
- This was the second and final regular season meeting between Calgary and Tampa Bay this season. The Lightning won both contests.
- The Lightning are now 16-12-1-1 all-time against the Flames.
- Steven Stamkos had a three-game points-scored streak (two goals and three assists) broken.
- Over his past six games, Kucherov has rung up five goals and five assists.
- The Lightning conclude this homestand with a 4-0-0 record, outscoring opponents 19-10.
- After having four full days off between games on the homestand, the Lightning will now play three games in four days on the road.
- Tonight was Military Appreciation Night at the Amalie Arena. The Lightning hosted more than 2,300 service members, active duty and veterans, with tickets to tonight's game.
- The Lightning honored Sgt. Taylor Urruela as the eighth Lightning Community Hero of the year during the first period of tonight's game. Urruela, who received a $50,000 donation from the Lightning Foundation and the Lightning Community Heroes program, will donate the money to VETSports. Sgt. Urruela is a leader in the Tampa Bay community who exemplifies the true essence of courage having overcome adversity and responding with a helping hand to other soldiers facing the aftermath of returning from war. He served in the United States Army and was deployed to Iraq. In 2006, two days before Urreula was scheduled to come home from deployment, his Humvee was struck by roadside bombs that killed his commanding officer and severely injured him and his comrades. Coming back home was a difficult transition for Sgt. Urruela. However, he realized that the struggles with transitioning to life after war were shared by many and decided to co-found VETSports. VETSports is a national organization dedicated to helping veterans heal and transition through the power of athletics. Their mission is to help veterans achieve better physical, mental and emotional health after service through sports, physical activity and community involvement.