Forget that the opponent was in last-place. Forget that the Tampa Bay Lightning blew a two-goal lead for the second straight night. Forget that it took until overtime to complete the task.
The Lightning won.
What else matters?
The Lightning, getting points in its sixth straight game, is starting to show signs of life in the Eastern Conference Wild-card race. Sunday night, Tampa Bay launched 40 shots at Colorado, and came away with a 3-2 overtime victory.
The winning goal was scored when Jonathan Drouin stole the puck, then scored with at 2:27 of the overtime period.
“That’s what he does,” said Lightning coach Jon Cooper. “He’s a gifted, gifted player. You get him that close to the net with the puck and a little bit of time and space and he can do some magical things.”
For the second straight night, the Lightning seemed to be in good shape after Braydon Point and Vladislav Namestikov scored. But the Avs came back to force overtime when Matt Duchene scored the tying goal with 41.9 seconds to play on a shot that deflected off two players.
“Give Colorado credit for not quitting down 2-0 going into the third,” Cooper said, “but we needed to win one of those. Regardless of how this game’s going to turn out or how we’re going to get to 3-2, we needed it.”
The Lightning could have iced the game when Tyler Johnson scored in the third period, but the goal was disallowed. It spoiled a good night for the Triplets.
“Yeah, they were our best line tonight.” Cooper said. “They were a factor every time they hit the ice. Like I said, you feel for those guys. They get that one goal called back as well as they had played. There was a little contact. The ref saw it one way. We see it the other. That’s how it goes.”
Tampa Bay now returns home for four straight games, including Tuesday against Edmonton.