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Bolts Win, Look Toward Playoffs

The Tampa Bay Lightning won their final season match over the Hurricanes, also shutting Carolina out of the playoffs.

After today's events Tampa will face the fourth seeded Penguins in the first round, and the New York Rangers won their eighth seed thanks to six goals from the Lightning.

The game ended 6-2, with a huge credit due to goalie Mike Smith who had 42 saves, took a wrist shot to the face, and fended off the desperate onslaught of Carolina, who were playing do-or-die hockey in their home finale. 

Martin St. Louis would finish the game with two assists and a goal on an empty net. Another empty net goal from Simon Gagne drove the point home in the third period. "We knew they were going to come out hard, and we treated it as a playoff game," Stamkos said. "It was a Game 7 for them, so for us it was a great tuneup for our playoffs."

Photographs by, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.