NHL Game Night: 3/22/11 Islanders at Lightning

Rock bottom (?)

NYI-5
TB-2

Dwayne Roloson allowed 4 goals on 27 shots for the loss, including a softie to Frans Nielsen that would've made Dieter Kochan himself blush.

First Period
01:01 TB Thompson (9), Purcell (31), Lecavalier (23)
10:22 NYI Bailey (11), Jurcina (12)(PP)

Second Period
05:16 NYI Okposo (5), Jurcina (13), Grabner (17)
13:39 NYI Martin (5), Hillen (16), Konopka (7)

Third Period
08:08 NYI Nielsen (11), unassisted(SH)
10:31 TB Moore (14), Bergenheim (15), Thompson (14)(PP)
19:14 NYI Grabner (31), unassisted(SH)(EN)

Nate Thompson was the game's second star.

This feels like last season, and that's not a good thing. The Lightning could not buy a win at this time late last season and fell like a rock out of the playoff hunt. With 9 games left to go, the Lightning have an 11 point lead on 9th place, but even that doesn't feel safe with 3 games against the Canes on the schedule. The division is gone. An opportunity to hang a banner has been squandered. Right now, the Lightning just need a win, any win, to try to stabilize their sagging fortunes, and it feels like the team won't be able to beat anyone until Steve Downie or Ryan Malone return to the lineup. The Lightning look stale and lost, and it feels like only a shakeup in the lineup will work. Nobody can find the back of the net. Stupid decisions keep getting made defensively. And, now, you even have the likes of Sean Bergenheim making undisciplined plays and Roloson giving up Dairy Queen Blizzards. It's a near total collapse, and I don't care if the Lightning outshot the Islanders 38-28 if you keep giving up shorthanded 2-on-0's, the number of shots matters little.

Blair Jones had 3 shots and 2 blocked shots in 10:42.

Mattias Ritola will have to wait to graduate from prospect status next season.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.