A line shuffle that included breaking up the vaunted "Triplets", at least temporarily, yielded much-needed positive results against former-division rival Carolina. Scoring twice as many goals as they had in their last four games combined, the Lightning got points from nine different players.
Eric Staal put the Hurricanes on the board first, converting on a power play at 15:07 of the opening period. He was assisted by Kris Versteeg and Victor Rask.
The Lightning tied it up just :38 seconds into the second when Ryan Callahan scored with the backhand on an assist from Ondrej Palat.
They took the lead late in the period when Steven Stamkos one-timed a slapshot past Hurricane goalie Cam Ward for a power play goal at the 18:54 mark. Nikita Kucherov and Anton Stralman provided helpers.
The Bolts would pad the lead to 3-1 when J.T. Brown scored at 4:07 of the third. Valtteri Filppula chipped in with the lone assist.
Just over five minutes later, Tyler Johnson finally got his first goal of the season, scoring at 9:16 with help from Nikita Kucherov and Andrej Sustr.
Carolina cut into that lead at 15:25, when Versteeg broke out on a long pass from Rask and beat Andrei Vasilevsky, making his first appearance of the season.
They would add one more goal when Staal scored with a single second remaining, on assists from Rask and Versteeg.
The Lightning will be in action again on Tuesday when they visit the Detroit Red Wings.
- The Lightning ended a streak of 290 minutes and 12 seconds without scoring a 5-on-5 goal, going back to October 23rd against the Winnipeg Jets.
- Vasielevsky, making his first start in Tampa Bay after a two-game conditioning stint in Syracuse, made 32 saves.
- Vladimir Namestnikov left the game after blocking a shot early in the second period. He returned but saw limited action.
- The Lightning have won 10 of the last 12 meetings against Carolina, outscoring the Hurricanes 37 to 14 in the 10 wins.
- Official attendance was announced as 9.081.