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Vasilevskiy secures first Lightning shutout of the season as they beat the Coyotes 4-0

Finally.

NHL: JAN 07 Canucks at Lightning Photo by Mark LoMoglio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Recap

Andrei Vasilevskiy finally did the thing getting his and the Lightning’s first shutout of the season in game number 43. He wasn’t busy facing a total of 23 shots. But he saved them all to keep the Coyotes off the scoreboard.

Arizona got off to a good start in this game getting the better of play through the first half of the first period. But the Lightning took over after that dominating the end of the first period and all of the second period before locking the game down in the third on their way to the win.

Alex Killorn opened the scoring with his 18th goal of the season knocking in a rebound on the doorstep. Sergachev followed that with a fluky goal where his pass deflected off a Coyotes defender and past Adin Hill to make it 2-0 at the end of the first period. In the second, the stars took over. Nikita Kucherov scored two goals and Steven Stamkos collected assists on both. The second assist gave the captain 400 in his career.

In the third, the Bolts focused on their defense and made sure their 4-0 lead stayed right where it was all the way to the final whistle.

But this game wasn’t without downsides. Both Pat Maroon and Ondrej Palat suffered injuries that forced them to leave the game. Maroon appeared to suffer an obvious concussion when he took a reverse elbow from Carl Soderberg during a puck battle along the boards. Palat took an awkward leg on leg hit from Taylor Hall and didn’t return. Expect a couple of recalls from Syracuse ahead of this weekend’s back to back in Philadelphia and New Jersey.

StatCap

This was a dominant performance, particularly defensively. Not only did the Lightning limit the quantity of shots the Coyotes generated, but also the quality. They held the Yotes below one expected goal for the entire game in all situations. That’s as dominant as it gets defensively.

In fact, the 0.89 xG for Arizona is tied for the second lowest of the season. The only better defensive game so far this season was the Wild limiting the Flyers to 0.86 xG on December 14th.

FeelingsCap

From a coaches perspective, this was pretty much a perfect game from the Lightning. Jon Cooper and the rest of the clipboard crew must have enjoyed this one thoroughly. The Bolts gave up nothing defensively. The goalie was solid. They finished their chances on offense. It would be tough to find anything to criticize about this performance.

This was the kind of game that shows the Lightning have the ability to execute well in every part of the game on the same night. That’s been an issue for much of the season with at least one aspect of their play seeming to let them down during most games. That wasn’t the case tonight. This was a nearly flawless showing against a good team and the kind of game everyone in the organization should feel good about.

Highlights

Alex Killorn 1-0 goal

Nikita Kucherov 3-0 goal

Nikita Kucherov 4-0 goal