Tampa Bay Lightning Game 37: versus the Philadelphia Flyers
The Tampa Bay Lightning lost to the Philadelphia Flyers 5-2.
This was Mattias Ohlund's 800th career game. It was really too bad that the Lightning couldn't win it for him. That's quite a milestone.
And, just as importantly, Zenon Konopka scored his first NHL goal in over four years.
This was a strange game. More so than usual. It was like every period was an entirely different game with entirely different teams playing.
The first period was ugly. It was slow and sloppy and chippy and not very good. Even worse than they'd been playing on their recent road trip. There were a lot of penalties being taken - particularly by the Lightning. They ended up being down 2-0 after one.
Then the second period was entirely different. It had a great pace, the players were clicking, and all of that sloppiness was gone. The penalties slowed down, too. And the Lightning managed to score a couple of goals, ending the second period tied 2-2.
The third period was pretty typical of how they'd been playing a few games before. The players kept bunching up on the ice, leaving whole swaths of it uncovered. The defense wasn't clearing rebounds. The forwards were buzzing around but couldn't convert anything. The only bright spot was that the Lightning didn't take any penalties for the second period in a row.
Vincent Lecavalier had a whopping seven shots on goal - that doesn't include the two that were blocked. I'm sure there were a few more that weren't counted by the official statistician on the game, though. Hockey's a fast game, so you can't catch everything.
The other crazy stat of the night was Steven Stamkos's faceoff percentage. Earlier in the season, he'd been doing pretty well with faceoffs. But then he jammed his wrist at practice, and he's not done so well. He won just 29% of the 14 faceoffs he took - that's winning four and losing ten.
Alex Tanguay had a good night, though not so much statistically. He was controlling the puck and setting up some nice plays. So was Lecavalier. Victor Hedman was another player that had a good night - he had three shots on goal, four missed shots (shots that missed the net), and three blocked shots.
Jeff Halpern left the game, as did Todd Fedoruk. Halpern played his first game without the cage since he was injured. Although, both Halpern and Fedoruk are listed as having the ubiquitous "lower body injury".
The next game is Saturday, 26 December, at home against the Atlanta Thrashers. Game time is the customary 7:30 Eastern. The team has today and tomorrow off, so have a very Merry Christmas.
Flyers vs Lightning coverage [SB Nation]
Broad Street Hockey [SB Nation Philadelphia Flyers site]