Before the Phoenix Coyotes became the Arizona Coyotes, Tampa Bay Lightning right winger Teddy Purcell helped put a beating on them in an 8-3 game at Amalie Arena on February 23, 2011. The Lightning were on their way to a surprising Eastern Conference Final appearance in the team’s first year under general manager Steve Yzerman and head coach Guy Boucher.
Purcell was acquired at the previous trade deadline along with a third round pick from the Los Angeles Kings in exchange for Jeff Halpern. He found a home early playing on the right wing for Vincent Lecavalier. A shoulder injury eventually slowed him and led to him being traded to the Edmonton Oilers just a year after signing a fairly big three-year contract. 2010-11 was a breakout season for the right winger as he scored 17 goals and 51 points after having only amassed 11 goals and 34 points in his previous 110 NHL games.
This game in the 2010-11 season was Purcell’s first of two career hat tricks, his second one coming just over a year later against the Winnipeg Jets. His third goal put the Lightning up 7-0 in the second period with the Lightning eventually winning 8-3. Let’s go through each of his goals and see how he scored them. At the bottom is a YouTube video with the highlights so you can see the goals as well.
Purcell opened the scoring just two minutes into the game. Purcell intercepted a clearing attempt along the boards at the hashmarks of the right wing circle. He took a step off the boards with the puck and wristed the puck towards the net. The puck hit Coyotes defenseman Nolan Yonkman’s stick and re-directed through the legs of Jason LaBarbera in net. This first goal for Purcell was unassisted.
After going up 5-0 in the first period thanks to three power play goals, one each from Steven Stamkos, Lecavalier, and Martin St. Louis and an even strength goal for St. Louis, the Lightning were back at it in the second period with a commanding lead. The second goal for Purcell was a bit more lucky as Purcell got his stick in the right place at the right time. Simon Gagne helped to keep the puck in the offensive zone after Purcell lost the puck in the center of the zone after taking a pass.
Randy Jones at the left point picked the puck up from Gagne and passed it down for Lecavalier at the side of the net. Lecavalier went just below the end line to pick up the loose puck, spun around, and whipped it towards Purcell coming to the front of the net. Purcell got his stick on the puck and with a quick flick of the wrists, he found the back of the net to put the Lightning up 6-0. Lecavalier and Jones assisted on the goal.
The third goal of the night came less than six minutes later in the second period. Lecavalier and Gagne were battling along the right wing boards for control of the puck. Gagne was able to tap the puck and Lecavalier picked it up as he made his way towards the net. Seeing Lecavalier coming, Purcell released from the front of the net and set himself up to the side to give Lecavalier a passing option. The defenseman that had been covering Purcell moved to challenge Lecavalier and went down to block. Lecavalier dished the puck over to Purcell for the easy one-timer into the back of the net. The goal put the Lightning up 7-0 and the hats rained down in the St. Pete Times Forum. Lecavalier picked up his fifth point of the night with the assist and Gagne received the secondary assist.