By Jake Ricker
The Lightning looked to finish their four-game home stand-off strong as they took on the Edmonton Oilers. Here is how the lines shaped up against the Oilers:
The Lightning got off to a strong start with five shots on goal in just the first few minutes of the game. The Lightning then got the first opportunity of the game, which hasn't been a good thing in the last few games. And that problem continued as the Lightning gave up another shorthanded goal and now trailed 1-0. The Lightning pushed back, though, and Hagel sniped one past Campbell to tie the game at 1.
The Lightning would then go back to the power play as the Oilers were called for a hook. But once again, the Lightning power play generated nothing on the man advantage. The Lightning continued to outshoot the Oilers 12-4, but due to the shorthanded goal, this game was still tied.
Vasilevskiy then had to make a couple of big saves as the Oilers tried to take back the lead. The Lightning didn't let the Oilers hold onto the pressure for long, though, as they controlled the last few minutes of the game. Time would then expire, and we would head into the first intermission tied at one.
The Lightning would take an early penalty to start this period, as Sergachev was called for holding. The Oiler's power play quickly got work and converted as McDavid scored yet another goal to make it 2-1. There was then a scary situation as Evander Kane went down after a hit and was cut by a skate on his wrist. Kane luckily got pressure on it and quickly went to the locker room.
The Lightning then took another penalty as Kucherov was called for a trip. Seconds later, the Oilers make it a 3-1 hockey game. The Oilers controlled this second period after struggling in the first, and the Bolts needed a momentum change quickly. They would get that chance, as the Oilers would be called for too many men on the ice. But it was more of the same as the Lightning power play could not generate any chances.
Koepke then got sent into the boards by Foegele, and he would sit in the box for boarding. The Lightning did get two shots on goal on this power play, but once again, there were no quality chances. Kucherov was then shaken up after a slash, and it would send the Lightning back to another power play. This power play wouldn't even last the full two minutes as Stamkos was called for delay of game.
All the penalties would eventually end, and we would get back to 5-on-5. The Oilers then thought they scored, but the goal would be called back for a kicking motion. The period then came to a close, and the Lighting would head to the intermission trailing by two.
The Lightning got off to a much better start in the third as Killorn quickly fired one home to bring the Lightning within one. It felt like the Lightning were shot out of a cannon as they got chance after chance on net. PEB would be called for a trip, though, at the end of a good shift, and the Lightning would have an important penalty kill. The penalty killers got the job done and the Lightning still trailed by one.
Things felt like they began to tighten up with chances at both ends of the ice. The Lightning then began to pull back out in front when it came to pressure, but the Oilers were able to hold them off. The Lightning then finally broke through, and Maroon tapped it home to tie the game at three. Or so they thought. The Oilers challenged the goal, and it would be brought back as the puck never crossed the line.
The Lightning would then pull Vasilevskiy for one last push. The top players for the Bolts came out swinging, but Campbell was able to fend them off. The Lightning's push would not be enough as time would expire and the Oilers won this one 3-2.
The Lightning played a good first period, and they played a good third period. The Problem is they did not play a full 60 minutes, and special teams was the biggest issue. You can not let the Oiler's power play have that much time and space and give up a shorthanded goal. The Lightning need to get their power play going, as it continues to be a major issue for the team.
1. McDavid (1G,1A)
2. Point (2A)
3. Campbell (35SV)
The Lightning's next game will be against the Washington Capitals on Friday, November 11th, at 7 PM ET.
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