NHL Game Night 1/4: Lightning at Thrashers

That's more like it.

TB-4
ATL-1

Mike Smith stopped 27 of 28 shots for the win.

First Period
02:48 TB Eminger (3), (Jokinen, Hall)(PP)

Second Period
16:20 TB St. Louis (14), (Lecavalier, Prospal)

Third Period
01:00 TB St. Louis (15), (Prospal, Eminger)
18:16 TB Malone (10), (Halpern, Mihalik)
19:38 ATL Christensen (2), (Slater, Boulton)

I'll have to investigate who broke code by uttering the "s" word before the game was over to cost Smith the goose egg.

You get a new appreciation for the difference between an NHL defenseman and a minor league defenseman watching what getting Krajicek back in the lineup does for the team. You also have to admire the toughness of Andrej Meszaros and you see that when Eminger's offensive game shows up, along with the MVP line, the Lightning are very potent offensively.

Matt Smaby had 2 penalty minutes, 1 shot, and 2 hits in 14:58. I believe when Ranger and Heward come back, that Heward should be sent back to Norfolk of the AHL and Smaby should be the new #7 defenseman. It's time for him to learn his craft at the NHL level.

Vladimir Mihalik got his first NHL assist in 6:52 of ice time. Hopefully this emergency recall will energize Vladimir to reapply himself when he goes back to Norfolk. He pouted a bit when he was sent down at the start of the season. The psychology will be different on an emergency recall, I hope.

Steven Stamkos had 1 shot and was 20% on draws in 11:35. He's now 2 games away from his Bolt Prospects graduation from prospect status.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.