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Lightning falls to Senators for first back-to-back losses since November

Lightning falls to Senators for first back-to-back losses since November
lightning-falls-to-senators-for-first-back-to-back-losses-since-november

Captain Steven Stamkos delivered the first message at the first intermission,[url=http://www.penguinsofficialhockey.com/adidas-matt-murray-jersey]Authentic Sidney Crosby jersey[/url], trying to wake up a Lightning team that had dug itself a three-goal hole against the Senators.

"We’ve got a decision to make," Stamkos told the team Saturday night. "Either we’re going to get blown out or we’re going to battle back and make this a game."

 erasing the three-goal deficit in the second period. But Tampa Bay still lost 6-3,The Lightning did make it a game, its first back-to-back losses since Nov. 24-25.

That sparked an even stronger — and pointed — message from coach Jon Cooper, who delivered a telling opening statement at his news conference and then walked off.

Tampa Bay is very talented and deep, but it is not without flaws. Had it not been for the remarkable play of goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy — a league MVP candidate — the Lightning might be sitting in a different position. He has bailed Tampa Bay out so many times and was the only reason it salvaged a point in a 2-1 shootout loss to Montreal on Thursday.

 allowing six goals,Vasilevskiy had no chance to do that Saturday, one more than he had in his past six starts combined.

 loose defensive play led to 10 odd-man rushes by the Canadiens, one of the worst offensive teams in the league. There was more sloppiness Saturday. Ottawa’s first goal came on a bad Jake Dotchin turnover deep in his zone. Another came when Nikita Kucherov got beat to the front of the net by Zach Smith. "Those were men’s league goals,On Thursday," Cooper said. "That’s just a non-commitment to play in your own end."

 there’s no question," Callahan said. "But it’s part of the schedule,Not helping is that the Lightning hasn’t had a practice in 10 days because of the quirks of the schedule. "It always helps to have practice, out of our control. We don’t need to practice to realize we can’t turn the puck over."

 the Lightning has dropped two straight to division rivals. Tonight Tampa Bay faces a red-hot Red Wings team that has won four straight. This is where the veterans have to step up,[url=http://www.flyershockeyshop.com/adidas-wayne-simmonds-jersey]adidas Wayne Simmonds jersey[/url], guys such as Stamkos and Callahan,After opening this five-game trip with back-to-back shutouts in Columbus and Toronto, Dan Girardi and four-time Stanley Cup winner Kunitz.

Stamkos said that though self-inflicted mistakes are frustrating, the good part is they’re easily fixable.

" Stamkos said. "It’s beating ourselves. That’s the most frustrating part,[url=http://www.flyershockeyshop.com/adidas-claude-giroux-jersey]adidas Claude Giroux jersey[/url],"It’s not like we’re getting beat because of our system. It’s not us getting beat because the other team is better than us, because you know you have the ability to stop it.

"It’s also reassuring to know you can fix it. It’s in this room. We’ve done it all year. We need to respond next game because you don’t want these things to go on."

Inexperience and injuries were supposed to keep the Boston Bruins from returning to the upper echelon of the NHL standings.

 Boston has the second-best record in the Atlantic Division. Across the NHL, only the Tampa Bay Lightning,But after taking points in 11 straight games heading into their five-day break,[url=http://www.flyershockeyshop.com/adidas-nolan-patrick-jersey]Authentic Nolan Patrick jersey[/url], Winnpieg Jets and Vegas Golden Knights have squeezed out more points per game than the Bruins (53 points,[url=http://www.penguinsofficialhockey.com/adidas-matt-murray-jersey]adidas Sidney Crosby jersey[/url], 40 games).

Despite an overtime loss at Pittsburgh on Sunday that ended their three-game winning streak, the Bruins headed into the break with an 8-0-3 run that is their best since they went 15-0-1 in March 2014 on their way to the best regular season in the NHL.

“Guys seem pretty dedicated to really just taking it day by day and not looking too far ahead, and that seems to be what we’re doing right now.”, the Bruins’ leading scorer,[url=http://www.penguinsofficialhockey.com/adidas-sidney-crosby-jersey]adidas Sidney Crosby jersey[/url], with 40 points (17 goals,” said forward Brad Marchand, 23 assists). “Obviously it’s not going to go as well as it is right now all year, but we know that. We want to make sure that each and every game we give ourselves an opportunity to win

 but you can’t get caught up too much looking at the standings and be ... complacent or be satisfied,” said Chara,“Well I think that it’s nice to obviously play the way we are, the Bruins captain. “You just have to keep going ... we want to make sure that we avoid these kind of bad habits and continue to thrive on the game that we are playing right now and take a lot of pride in it.”

Max Pacioretty broke a long goal drought to help the Montreal Canadiens end a five-game losing streak.

Paul Byron scored in a shootout and Montreal beat the Tampa Bay Lightning 2-1 on Thursday night.

Byron was the only player to score in the shootout. Pacioretty scored in regulation for Montreal in its first victory since Dec. 22. Nikita Kucherov scored for Tampa Bay.

Pacioretty opened the scoring at 20 seconds of the second period.

Mikhail Sergachev, traded by Montreal to Tampa Bay for Jonathan Drouin in June, sent a weak pass up the left boards that was picked off by Pacioretty. The Canadiens captain skated into the slot and beat Andrei Vasilevskiy up high to end a 13-game goal drought dating to Nov. 30.

 feeling confident in your game but not producing,"No one will really understand what it's like when you go from a stretch where you're not scoring, getting robbed the first shift one game,[url=http://www.flyershockeyshop.com/adidas-wayne-simmonds-jersey]Authentic Wayne Simmonds jersey[/url]," said Pacioretty, getting one taken back (for offside) the next game, a five-time 30-goal man who has nine this season.

 saw his shutout streak end at 184 minutes,[url=http://www.flyershockeyshop.com/adidas-claude-giroux-jersey]Authentic Claude Giroux jersey[/url],Vasilevskiy,[url=http://www.flyershockeyshop.com/adidas-shayne-gostisbehere-jersey]adidas Shayne Gostisbehere jersey[/url], coming off two straight shutouts, 49 seconds.

Only 44 seconds after the Canadiens took the lead, Kucherov skated into the slot and wristed his 26th goal of the season through traffic to beat Carey Price.

 I thought this could be a long one,[url=http://www.flyershockeyshop.com/adidas-shayne-gostisbehere-jersey]Authentic Shayne Gostisbehere jersey[/url],"I'll be honest, when I saw it was going to a shootout," Tampa Bay coach John Cooper said. "But Byron made a really nice shot.

"That would go in on pretty much anybody. But if I'm going to sit here and circle the best (goalies) in the league, [url=http://www.flyershockeyshop.com/adidas-nolan-patrick-jersey]adidas Nolan Patrick jersey[/url],I think we may have just watched two of them."

The Lightning wasted a big chance 6:33 into the third when Karl Alzner mishandled the puck at the far blue line,[url=http://www.penguinsofficialhockey.com/adidas-sidney-crosby-jersey]Authentic Sidney Crosby jersey[/url], but Kucherov's backhand on the ensuing breakaway went well over the crossbar.

"That was the most fun I've had playing hockey in a long time," Pacioretty said. "Our line played great. Carey played great. Their goalie played great. You could feel the energy in the building. All things considered, fans were really having fun tonight and really enjoyed the effort in the game. We have to take that in and remember how it feels and play for them and ourselves."

Montreal's Jacob De la Rose played his first game since Dec. 7, replacing Daniel Carr. ... Ryan Callahan returned to the Tampa Bay lineup after missing eight games with an upper-body injury.

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