The Tampa Bay Lightning edged out the Los Angeles Kings by a score of 6-4 last night. The win marks the Lighting’s fourth in a row and momentarily puts them first in the league.
The Lightning were awarded a power-play opportunity early in the period as a result of a high-stick by Tobias Bjornfot. Yet the Lighting only managed one shot on goal during the power play, which was saved, and the Kings succeeded on the penalty kill.
The Kings put up 10 shots during the period, yet none found the net. Tampa Bay matched with 10 shots in the period as well, but one of theirs found its mark. A bad pass by the Kings allowed Victor Hedman to take the puck on a fast break and tuck away the game’s opening goal.
Buried it. pic.twitter.com/C5r8xgbOyW
— Tampa Bay Lightning (@TBLightning) January 19, 2022
Towards the end of the period, the Lightning were penalized for having too many men on the ice. The Lightning snuffed out the power play though as the Kings did not even muster a shot. The score remained 1-0 at the first intermission.
The offense picked up after the intermission. During the period, Tampa Bay put 12 shots on goal and Los Angeles peppered the Lighting with 21 shots. Despite 20 shots in the opening six minutes of the period, neither managed to score. The Kings drew blood nearly halfway through the period, as Blake Lizotte scored a solo goal to even the game at one a piece.
Shortly after the ensuing faceoff, things got rough on the ice as Los Angeles’ Phillip Danault was given a penalty for tripping Tampa Bay’s Brayden Point. Simultaneously, Point was penalized for cross-checking Renault. A skirmish followed, and both players were given five-minute penalties for fighting.
Two minutes later, the Kings were penalized again when Sean Durzi was called for a cross-check on Victor Hedman. Despite being on the power play, the Lightning turned the puck over in the defensive half to Alex Iafallo who immediately took the shot and scored to make it 2-1 Kings. The Lightning answered quickly as Nikita Kucherov scored on the very same power play to make it 2-2.
The period saw two more goals in the final minutes. The King earned a power play inside six minutes to play in the period. Mathieu Joseph won the puck in the defensive half and assisted on a goal by Pierre-Edouard Bellemare to give the Lightning a 3-2 lead. The Kings answered a few minutes later and the score was knotted at 3-3 heading into the second intermission.
Despite many more shots, no scoring happened for the first 10 minutes of the period as the 3-3 deadlock remained. It would not last forever though, as Hedman scored his second of the game to put the Lighting ahead 4-3.
The Lighting scored twice more in the period. Joseph and Steven Stamkos each scored to make it a 6-3 advantage for the bolts. Los Angeles scored once more in the final minute of the game to make it 6-4, but it was too little too late and the Lightning won with a 6-4 final.
The win improves the Lighting’s standing to 59 points on the season, the most in the league, with a 27-9-5 record. As it stands, the Lightning are two points clear of the second place Panthers.
For the Kings, they remain at 45 points and second place in the Pacific Division. They trail the first place Golden Knights by three.
The next game for the Lightning is Friday as they stay in Southern California for a game against the Anaheim Ducks.