Game 13: Chicago Blackhawks at Tampa Bay Lightning

The Tampa Bay Lightning overcame a two-goal defeicit to beat the Chicago Blackhawks 5-4 in overtime.

Lightning captain Vincent Lecavalier's goal with 53.7 seconds left in overtime capped a game that featured two scoreless periods wrapped around a wild second that saw the two teams combine for eight goals.

The first period ended in a scoreless tie as goaltender Dwayne Roloson turned away 15 Blackhawks shots. Meanwhile, the Lightning only mustered eight against Chicago starter Ray Emery.

In the second period, however, things heated up quickly.

Steven Stamkos got the Lightning on the board first, scoring the first of three he would tally on the night at the 0:15 mark, on assists from Ryan Malone and Marc-Andre Bergeron. Less than a minute later, the Blackhawks answered on a power play goal by Patrick Sharp with help from Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane.

The Lightning re-took the lead at 4:55 when Brett Connolly scored with assists from Martin St. Louis and Lecavalier. Less than 90 seconds later it was tied again when Marian Hossa scored on assists from Kane and Steve Montador. Chicago took control of the game at that point, scoring two goals in the next 75 seconds, the first by Daniel Carcillo unassisted and the second by Sharp from Kane and Hossa.

The Lightning, plagued by turnovers and offensive impatience up until that point, settled down and limited Chicago's scoring chances. Stamkos scored his second goal at 11:45 with help from Teddy Purcell and his third goal on a power play late in the period with assists by St. Louis and Malone.

After giving up 24 shots in the first two periods, they held the Blackhawks to eight in the third, and the period ended with the teams tied at 4-4.

The Lightning, winless in their two previous overtime efforts (succumbing in shootouts both times), allowed no shots to Chicago while generating four of their own, ending with Lecavalier's game winner with assists from St. Louis and Bergeron.

The Lightning are in action again on Sunday, November 6th, when they travel to south Florida to take on the Panthers.

Game notes:

  • This was the only regular season meeting between Chicago and the Lightning.
  • Oh, those quirky NHL schedules: The Lightning will not play two consecutive games on the road again until November 12 and 14 (St. Louis and Winnipeg) and will not play consecutive home games again until a three-game homestand between November 17-22 (Pittsburgh, New Jersey & Toronto).
  • Once again, the Lightning were held scoreless in the first period, the sixth time this season.
  • Patrick Sharp's goal in the second snapped the Lightning's streak of six games without allowing a power play goal.
  • Stamkos's hat trick was the first for a Lightning player this season and the fourth of his career.
  • The Lightning recognized Dottie Berger MacKinnon as a Lightning Community Hero during the first period of tonight’s game. MacKinnon, who received a $50,000 donation from the Lightning Foundation and the Lightning Community Heroes program, will contribute the money to her charity of choice, A Kid’s Place. MacKinnon founded A Kid’s Place in 2009 with the goal of instilling change and improving the quality of life for abandoned, abused and neglected children. The initiative also aims to provide an enriching experience for kids that will instill hope, encourage growth, and provide opportunities for success. Today, A Kid’s Place houses 60 kids as it continues to foster change in residential group care in the state of Florida. MacKinnon has personally assisted children in court by advocating as a Guardian ad Litem and also helped establish the Joshua House, which has made a significant impact upon the lives of over 1,400 abused children over the past 20 years.