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Lightning return to their winning ways with a 4-2 victory over Chicago

Nov 16, 2023; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Blackhawks forward Connor Bedard (98) pushes Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Mikhail Sergachev (98) after Sergachev boarded Chicago Blackhawks forward Philipp Kurashev (23) in the first period at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Lightning snapped a three-game winning losing streak with a 4-2 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks. Brayden Point, Mikhail Sergachev, Victor Hedman, and Brandon Hagel provided the goals while Jonas Johansson snapped a personal four-game losing streak by stopping 13 of 15 shots. Point ended up with three points while Hedman and Sergachev had two points a piece. Lukas Reichel and old friend Corey Perry scored for the home team.

The Bolts came into the game with a new look to their lines. Alex Barre-Boulet was scratched in favor of Austin Watson while Nick Paul joined Anthony Cirelli and Steven Stamkos on the second line. That pushed Tyler Motte into the middle of Tanner Jeannot and Mikey Eyssimont.

Chicago grabbed the lead in the first period, the seventh straight period the Lightning failed to record a goal, when Lukas Reichal scored his first goal of the season on the power play as he deflected home a point shot. Much like the game in Tampa, the Lightning dominated the stat board, but couldn’t translate it to actual goals.

That, and their scoreless streak, ended in the second period when Brayden Point picked up his 7th goal of the year, also on the power play. Mikhail Sergachev gave the Bolts the lead with his first goal of the season a few minute later. Not only was it his first goal, it was the first goal for a Lightning defender not named Victor Hedman this season. It wasn’t an extremely high event game, especially compared to some of the Bolts recent games as the teams only had a combined 14 high-danger chance through 40 minutes (the Lightning had 10 of those).

Corey Perry came back to haunt his former teammates as he tied things up early in the second period as the ‘Hawks capitalized on a turnover by Nikita Kucherov in the offensive zone. However, unlike in games past, the Lightning didn’t let that spiral out of control and in the words of head coach Jon Cooper, “the boys dug in”. Victor Hedman, hanging down by the front of the net, put them back up for good. Brandon Hagel added an empty-netter to get the final score to 4-2. Hagel has now recorded at least one point in every game he’s played against his former team (4 goals, 2 assists in 5 games).

Tampa Bay held Chicago to just 15 shots and posted a 64.09% share of expected goals. The only real downer for the night was that Anthony Cirelli left the game after blocking a shot and didn’t return. Coach Cooper didn’t have an update on his status, but did comment that “the fact he couldn’t come back, that’s a little worrisome”.

The Lightning finish their road trip with a 1-1 record and head back home to face the Edmonton Oilers at 4:00 PM at Amalie Arena.

The Lines

The Goals

Lukas Reichel (Philipp Kurashev, Kevin Korchinski) Power Play, 1-0 Chicago

Brayden Point (Victor Hedman, Nikita Kucherov) Power Play, 1-1

Mikhail Sergachev (Brayden Point, Steven Stamkos) 2-1 Lightning

Corey Perry (Jason Dickinson, Boris Katchouk) 2-2

Victor Hedman (Erik Cernak, Brayden Point) 3-2 Lightning

Brandon Hagel (Mikhail Sergachev) Empty Net, 4-2 Lightning

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