Lightning Round: What is the Lightning’s record when they don’t score with a 5-on-3?

Let’s just say it could be better.

Following a 3-2 loss to the Winnipeg Jets earlier this month, veteran forward Corey Perry was quoted as saying, “It’s the old thing, you don’t score on your 5-on-3’s, you don’t win too many hockey games.” Earlier in the season, Coach Cooper had expressed similar sentiments following a game where the Tampa Bay Lightning failed to convert on another 5-on-3 power play. Of course, that begs the question, what is the Lightning’s record when they don’t score on a 5-on-3.

First of all, it doesn’t happen as much you might think it would. During their first 70 games of the season it’s happened all of 10 times for the Bolts. That’s the third highest total in the league with Buffalo and Minnesota leading the way with 12 and Ottawa and Winnipeg at 11 each. Over all, the Lightning have converted a total of three times with the 5-on-3 advantage. That ties them for 10th overall in 5-on-3 goals.

Five teams have yet to convert one all season. A couple may be surprising considering their offensive talent. Florida is 0-for-9, Toronto is 0-for-3, and Calgary is 0-for-7. The best success rate? Probably no surprises there as Colorado and Washington are both 5-for-6.

So what is the record for the Lightning when they fail to convert a 5-on-3? They are 3-4 in the 7 games where they haven’t scored with two extra skaters. That’s actually not that bad. However, two of the losses were by one goal. A 7-4 loss to Detroit likely would have had a different outcome considering two of the Red Wing goals were empty netters. The fourth game was a 4-2 loss to the Kings that didn’t feature any empty net goals.

While a couple of goals could have improved that .428 winning percentage (and made the end of the season chase of Toronto a little easier) what is really kind of surprising is that scoring a goal at 5-on-3 really hasn’t been a boon for their record either.  In the three games where they did score there record is 1-1-1. They beat Vancouver 5-4, lost to the Rangers 3-1 on opening night, and lost in a shootout to San Jose, 4-3.

Lightning 5-on-3 opportunities

GameOpponentWinFinal ScoreGoal
11/3/22CarolinaNo4-3 (SO)Yes
10/11/22New York RangersNo3-1Yes
03/02/23PittsburghNo5-4 (OT)No
10/22/22New York IslandersYes5-3No
10/25/22Los AngelesNo4-2No

So, while the adage is still somewhat true, the inverse is true for the Lightning this season as well, when they do score on the 5-on-3, they don’t win too many hockey games.

One more thing, and it’s kind of relevant with them facing the Ottawa Senators tonight, the Lightning are the only team in the last two seasons to concede a shorthanded goal while on a 5-on-3. The goalscorer - Mathieu Joseph:

Yes, the Lightning won that game. So, I guess their secret formula is to allow a 3-on-5 shorthanded goal.

Lightning / NHL News

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NHLPA Player Poll [NHLPA]

(Courtesy of GeoFitz) Lightning summary of the NHLPA Player poll...

  • If you need to win one game, which goalie? Vasilevskiy 1st
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  • Top Defenseman - Hedman 2nd
  • Best Stick-handler - Kucherov 5th
  • Best Passer - Kucherov 3rd
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NCAA Men’s Hockey Tournament Guide [NCAA]

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Speaking of McDavid. He knows how to hit milestones in style. How about an overtime game winner to hit 60 goals for the first time in his career?