And now it's 5 points.
Johan Holmqvist stopped 29 of 31 shots before stopping 1 of 2 shooters in the shootout for the win. King Holmer's perfection on a shot by shot basis goes by the board, but he still has yet to be bested by another goaltender in the penalty shot session. The Lightning's goals came from Vincent Lecavalier and Blair Jones, with Jones' goal being the first of his young NHL career. Ryan Craig, Brad Richards, Andre Roy and Tim Taylor had individual assists. The Lightning were a perfect 3-for-3 in the shootout with goals from the big three: Lecavalier, Richards and St. Louis.
Jones was +1 in 7:03 tonight with 1 shot, 1 hit and 2 takeaways. He was 1 for 2 on draws as well.
With the Lightning's win and Atlanta's shootout loss tonight the Lightning have moved to within 5 points of the division lead with a game in hand. The Lightning also have moved within 2 points of 4th place Montreal which lost to Carolina tonight.
Tampa Bay 2:23, Vincent Lecavalier 34 (power play) (Ryan Craig, Brad Richards)
Tampa Bay 4:18, Blair Jones 1 (Andre Roy, Tim Taylor)
Los Angeles 1:13, Mike Weaver 1 (Derek Armstrong, Dustin Brown)
Los Angeles 7:41, Mike Weaver 2 (Brian Willsie, Anze Kopitar)
Los Angeles- Kopitar
Tampa Bay- Lecavalier, Richards, St. Louis
Game sheet from NHL.com.
Bolt Prospects has learned from sources within the Lightning organization that the reason for the recall is that Jonathan Boutin is not 100% healthy and may not be able to dress for the Falcon's next game.
It's a shame the Falcons couldn't quite get that second point to salvage more out of this weekend.
Karri Ramo stopped 43 of 45 shots faced in the loss. Sylvain Dufresne had two assists in the game with Springfield's goals coming from Marek Kvapil and Eric Healey. Adam Henrich and Norm Milley added individual assists. Justin Keller failed to capitalize on a 2nd period penalty shot opportunity and former Falcon Ryan Vesce scored twice in the shootout for Binghampton who emerged triumphant 2-1 in the penalty shots in six frames. Ramo and Healey were named first and third stars respectively.
BNG David, (2) (Pecker), 6:49
BNG Rawlyk, (1) (Cook, Vesce), 4:50 (PP)
SPR Kvapil, (10) (Henrich, Dufresne), 7:00 (PP)
SPR Healey, (22) (Dufresne, Milley), 14:26
BNG- Vesce (2)
Game sheet from TheAHL.com.
Mike Lundin was scoreless and even in #9 Maine's 2-1 loss to #1 New Hampshire. The defensmen had two shots in the game. The Black Bears (17-8-2, 10-8-1) split the weekend series with the Wildcats and still sit in 6th in the HEast one point behind UMASS. They face Vermont next weekend.
UMASS' four game unbeaten streak came to an end in their 2-1 loss to UMASS-Lowell. John Wessbecker was scoreless and even in the game.
Dusty Collins was scoreless and +1 in Northern Michigan's 2-1 loss to Lake Superior. The Wildcats (12-18-2, 9-14-1) have only four games remaining and sit tied for 8th in the CCHA with Western Michigan and Alaska.
So much for Kevin Beechâ€™s hot streak. Beech made 35 saves in Saginaw tonight, but unfortunately also let in 9 goals. The Spirit had 44 shots on Erie in the 9-0 win. That's 19 goals against for Erie in the last two games.
Chris Lawrence and Mississauga returned to their winning ways, defeating Sarnia at home 8-6. Lawrence extended his point streak to 8 games with a goal. He also had a plus-1 rating. Mississauga allowed 4 third period goals to turn a blowout into a close game before adding an empty netter.
Owen Sound scored 5 goals tonight, but Marek Bartanus did not figure in any of them. Despite scoring 5, the Attack lost in Belleville 8-5. Bartanus was minus-1 with 2 PIM. His streaks now stand at 13 games (scoreless) and 25 games (even or minus rating).
In the WHL, Prince George won their fourth straight, 6-5 over Kamloops in overtime. Vladimir Mihalik had an assist, an even rating, and 2 PIM. Mihalik was on the ice for the overtime winner by Sharks first rounder Devin Setoguchi - acquired by the Cougars earlier this year.
Dane Crowley and Everett were at home against Chilliwack and beat the Bruins 5-2. Crowley was scoreless and even.
Think Atlanta is starting to hear footsteps?
Johan Holmqvist stopped 24 of 26 shots faced in the win and has won 8 of his last 9 starts. King Holmer officially en fuego. Dan Boyle and Martin St. Louis each had a pair of assists on the night with the Lightning goals belonging to Paul Ranger, Brad Richards and Vincent Lecavalier (Lecavalier and Richards' goals being of the blistering/unstoppable power play variety). Eric Perrin and Ryan Craig added individual helpers.
The Lightning are cooler than the other side of the pillow in one goal games right now. It took a while for this team to find its confidence, but right now they've got swagger. And, don't look now, but by virtue of Atlanta's 5-2 loss to Philly the Lightning have now moved within six points of the division lead with a game still in hand. Furthermore, the Lightning have now tied the Thrashers with 29 wins and, looking at the schedule, the Lightning get the worst team in the Western Conference Tuesday night (Los Angeles) and the Thrashers get to play the best in the East (Buffalo). This thing could EASILY be down to 4 points with a game in hand if the Lightning stay focused and take care of business against the Kings. If I'm Thrashers GM Don Waddell, I'm having Doctor Feel Good call in a 'scrip for Valium right about now.
This is fun.
NY Rangers 7:31, Jason Krog 3 (Brendan Shanahan, Marcel Hossa)
Tampa Bay 6:51, Paul Ranger 3 (Dan Boyle, Eric Perrin)
Tampa Bay 14:06, Brad Richards 19 (power play) (Dan Boyle, Martin St. Louis)
NY Rangers 18:23, Michael Nylander 17 (power play) (Jaromir Jagr, Karel Rachunek)
Tampa Bay 11:53, Vincent Lecavalier 33 (power play) (Martin St. Louis, Ryan Craig)
Game sheet from NHL.com.