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No Bite for the Sharks as Bolts Dominate for Big Win

Perhaps the best way to describe the Tampa Bay Lightning this season is “consistently inconsistent”. A nice home win to start the season. Then came a dismal 0-2-1 road trip. The homestand has been good so far at 2-0-1 (and we will try to forget how they blew a 2-goal lead in the third period against Toronto and couldn’t manage to touch the puck in overtime). Yes, consistently inconsistent. Meanwhile, their opponents tonight, the San Jose Sharks, have been quite consistent. Consistently disappointing. They come into tonight’s game ranked dead last in the league with just one point and a goal differential of minus 15. Can the Bolts drown the Sharks? Or will the Sharks manage to turn things around and take a bite out of the Bolts?

Bolts Take Charge Early

The Sharks started this one just kind of swimming around, but it was the Lightning who looked hungry. They were pressing from the first drop of the puck. It did not take too long for them to be rewarded. Brayden Point, who’d been held without a goal for the first six games of the season, found the back of the net for the second straight game to put the Bolts up 1-0 just 1:41 into the game. Point extended his point streak to 5 games. Sergachev and Perbix drew the assists.

The Lightning continued to pressure. They got a power play and had some good chances, but no goals. Shortly after the power play, Mikey Eyssimont batted down Calvin de Haan’s shot from the point to put the Bolts up 2-0 at 6:03.

The Bolts dominated the rest of the period but could not extend their two-goal advantage. Then, Matt Benning took a hooking penalty at 17:41 to send the Bolts to their second power play of the period. About a minute in, Jacob Peterson got his stick up into the face of Steven Stamkos to give the Bolts a five on three advantage. And the captain made the Sharks pay, drilling his third of the season to give his team a 3-0 lead.

Different Period, Similar Story

As mentioned, consistency hadn’t exactly been a strength for the Lightning this season. They had a dominant first period, but could they keep it up in the second?

The answer was a resounding yes! At 4:01, Alex Barre-Boulet fed a pass to a streaking Brandon Hagel. Hagel skated in alone and beat Mackenzie Blackwell to give the Lightning a 4-0 lead.

And the Bolts were not done yet. Nick Paul decided to get in on the action as he tapped in a loose puck for his 5th of the season at 7:29.

That was the end for Mackenzie Blackwood. He got the hook after giving up 5 goals on 21 shots. His defense certainly let him down tonight. At the other end of the ice, Jonas Johansson shut the door again for five straight periods of shutout hockey.

A Bonus for Jonas?

The Bolts were taking a 5-0 lead into the final frame against a pretty hapless looking San Jose Sharks team. Things were looking good for the home team. What did they need to do in the third? Simple. Just play responsibly with the puck and close this one out on a high note. But as a bonus, it sure would be nice to see back-to-back shutouts for Jonas Johanssen. Johanssen has had the Herculean task of filling in for injured all-star goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy this season. And he has been stellar! He had amazing performance against Toronto Saturday night, only to be let down by his teammates as the Leafs blasted 54 shots against him.

They made it up to him on Tuesday night and helped him earn his first shutout as a Bolt defeating the Carolina Hurricanes 3-0.

The Lightning padded their lead less than 6 minutes into the frame as Luke Glendening scored his first as a Bolt to put his team up 6-0. After the game, Head Coach Jon Cooper compared Glendening’s goal to a “pool shot” as he lauded the hustle of the Lightning’s 4th line tonight.

The last time a Lightning goalie had 2 consecutive shutouts was Andrei Vasilevskiy on 2/27/21. Could Johansson do it tonight? The time ticked down… the horn sounded. And there it was! A second straight shutout (120 consecutive minutes) for Jonas Johansson and a big win for the boys in blue!

Three Stars

1- Jonas Johansson- 2nd straight shuout

2- Steven Stamkos- 1 goal, 1 assist

3- Nick Perbix- 2 assists

Up Next

The Bolts will get this weekend off to relax and then finish up this homestand on Monday night at 7pm as Yanni Gourde and the Seattle Kraken make their yearly visit to Amalie Arena.





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