Game 55: Home win streak comes to an end with 2-1 loss to St. Louis

The Tampa Bay Lightning lost to the visiting St. Louis Blues 2-1 on Sunday, bringing an end to a nine-game home winning streak.

The St. Louis Blues beat the Tampa Bay Lightning 2-1 at Amalie Arena in Tampa Sunday.

On Valentines Day, one is an especially lonely number, especially when you only score one goal and lose by that same margin. Also, I immediately regret writing that.

The Lightning didn't play badly but simply didn't have an answer for a smothering St. Louis forecheck and Blues goalie Brian Elliott was outstanding, fending off 37 of the 38 shots that came his way. Still, Tampa Bay comes away with their first loss at home in 2016 and having lost three of their last four overall.

"You know what, we just have to keep at it. Keep at it and stay on top of it. I thought our execution was better tonight than it has been in the past. We need to keep building on that because we have another good team coming in here Tuesday with the Sharks." - Braydon Coburn

Things started out on a feisty note when Robby Fabbri of St. Louis dropped his gloves and fought Vladislav Namestnikov just 1:42 in, a bout that Namestnikov won quite handily.

The Lightning actually held the Blues without a single shot for the first 8:53 of the game and would maintain a decided advantage in that area throughout, allowing just 21 St. Louis shots on the night.

The first period ended in a scoreless tie.

Just 36 seconds into the second, Fabbri scored on a breakaway, fed by Paul Stastny.

Late in the period the Lightning generated some good chances but were unable to cash in.

The 1-0 score held up deep into the third period and the Blues doubled it up at 17:41 on another breakaway, this time from Patrick Berglund unassisted, deflecting his own rebound off of his skate into the net. It was originally waved off due to what was seen as a kicking motion by officials on the ice but was reversed upon video review.

"I put on the breaks, and it bounced and it went in. I didn't have my hopes up, so I looked at the referee right away. He obviously didn't confirm the goal, so that was that. Then they reviewed it, and they said it was a good goal. So we will take it and move on." - Berglund

Still, it was a flukey goal; not because of the video review (which was correct) but because Berglund wound up with the puck after Tampa Bay's Matt Carle jumped to try to keep it in the Lightning zone on a clearing attempt by Elliott and got just enough glove on it to tip it right to Berglund behind the defense.

"I thought the team played pretty well. I mean, I have to make a save there. Two breakaways for two goals, and that's the difference in the game. So if you really look at it, I'm the one who needs to be better. You can't give up two, and obviously the team played well. I had a chance to keep the team in it, and they get two breakaway goals." - Ben Bishop

"I mean, he played great obviously. He stands tall and gives us a great chance to win. He lets up one goal until the last two minutes, so we can't ask for anything more from him." - Ryan Callahan

The Lightning managed to cut into the lead with 52 seconds remaining and Bishop pulled for the extra skater. Nikita Kucherov scored in a scrum in front of the St. Louis net, getting assists from Tyler Johnson and Victor Hedman.

The Lightning lost the ensuing faceoff and the Blues forecheck prevented the Lightning from mounting a tying attack in the remaining seconds.

The current homestand continues Tuesday night with a visit from the San Jose Sharks.

Game notes:

  • The loss ends the Lightning's home game winning streak at nine games, one shy of the team record.
  • The Lightning are 11-20-3 with three ties all-time vs St. Louis with a record of 8-8-1 and three ties at home.
  • The last time the Lightning beat the Blues was November 2, 2013, having lost five straight since then.
  • Ben Bishop, who is from St. Louis and was drafted by the Blues in 2005, is now 1-4-1 against them.
  • The Bolts have given up the first goal in five straight games, compiling a record of 2-3 in the process.
  • Hedman has points in 11 of his last 15 games, three goals and 14 assists.
  • The Lightning's record when scoring less than three goals falls to 8-19-1
  • The Lightning honored Connie Going as the 29th Lightning Community Hero of the 2015-16 season during the first period of tonight's game. Going, who received a $50,000 donation from the Lightning Foundation and the Lightning Community Heroes program, will donate the money to the Tampa Bay Innovation Center and Adoption Related Services of Pinellas. Tonight's community hero has been instrumental in numerous Tampa Bay initiatives that have resulted in thousands of successful adoptions in foster children. Going was the founder of the Adoption Advocacy Center, which has provided post-adoption support to prevent adoptions from dissolving. Going has also been responsible for over 1,000 adoption finalizations in the local foster care system on top of creating dozens of marketing and social media campaigns for numerous adoption agencies. Going strives to continue and advance her philanthropic efforts by utilizing technology to bring additional resources to families who are going through the adoption process. Through this and other tasks, she hopes to forever change the adoption process for the better along with advocating, educating and innovating so that no child lingers in foster care without a loving home. Going becomes the 208th Lightning Community Hero since Jeff and Penny Vinik introduced the program in 2011-12 with a $10 million, five-season commitment to the Tampa Bay community. Through this evening's game, in total, the Lightning Foundation has granted $10.55 million to more than 300 different non-profits in the Greater Tampa Bay area./