I hate to say “I told you so,” but well….Tampa Bay’s penalty kill struck again. It didn’t take them long either, as the Lightning committed their first penalty seven minutes into the game and Michael Cammalleri of the Canadiens scored shortly thereafter. I was hoping they’d prove me wrong, but apparently not:
The Bolts have the 12th worst penalty kill unit in the NHL (51 SA/60 minutes), and the Canadiens have one of the better power play units (52 SF/60 minutes). This combination promises to be dangerous enough for the Lightning, but they will also be without Victor Hedman, their top defensive player. The Lightning are a mess on special teams at the best of times, so I hope Boucher makes it clear that whoever commits the first penalty tonight will have a custom, solo practice after the game.
Brett Clark, come on down! You’re the not-so-lucky winner tonight.
Steven Stamkos scored a goal for the Bolts earlier in the period on a deflection from Pavel Kubina, so the Canadiens’ goal only tied the score up at one. Despite multiple chances on both sides of the ice, that’s how the first period finished: all tied up at one.
Overall, the Lightning are behind in shots 10-8 and trailing in hits 7-6, but they have won more faceoffs (11-7). Again, they really need to watch out for those penalties; those could kill them tonight against the Canadiens.
To join in the conversation about the game, drop by the Game Thread over at SB Nation’s blog on the Bolts, Raw Charge.