For 88 seconds, the Tampa Bay Lightning seemed to be in good shape.
And then they were not.
The Lightning, still scrambling to get back into the wild-card race, fell 5-2 to the Pittsburgh Penguins Friday night. The Penguins, who beat the Bolts in last year’s conference finals, scored the game’s final three goals. After the Lightning tied the game at 2-2, it took only a minute and 28 seconds to take the lead.
Mark Streit, who was a member of the Lightning briefly last week, scored the tie-breaking goal.
“We weren’t going to go 20-0 down the stretch,” Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. “It makes (Saturday night’s) game (against Buffalo) critical. We need these points. Buffalo is in the same situation we’re in.”
Adam Erne scored his first NHL goal to give the Bolts a lead. After Evgeny Malkin scored twice, Nikita Kucherov tied the game at two.
Goaltender Peter Budaj make his first start for Tampa Bay and took the loss.