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Lightning clobbered again in 6-1 defeat to Nashville Predators

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Another night, another half-dozen goals, another scoreboard that was just too ugly to accept.

That’s how bad Thursday night was for the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Tampa Bay absorbed a 6-1 loss to Nashville, finishing a five-game homestand in which they hoped to make up ground at 2-2-1. The Predators scored the game’s final four goals, three of them by Colton Sissons, who had the first hat-trick of his career.

Nashville scored its goals on only 19 shots as Bolts’ goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy struggled.

“He’s a young goalie,” Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. “Eventually, he’s going to be a starting goalie in this league. You’re not going to have you’re A-game every single night. Nobody does. Under certain situations like this, Hall of Fame goaltenders have all gone through this.

“It’s how are you going to be the next game? Pick yourself up, dust yourself off and get ready for the next game. That’s all you can do. Tyler Johnson doesn’t have his A-game every single night. Ondrej Palat, go down the list, everybody doesn’t have their A-game every single night. I felt for him tonight, but, in saying that, we only scored one goal. So, regardless of how he did, it would have still been tough to win just getting one.”

 The game went from 2-1 to 6-1 quickly.

“If you look at that game overall, I don’t know if it is a 6-1 game,” Johnson said. “It wasn’t as bad as the score (indicated).”

Said defenseman Victor Hedman: “Just one of those games where you can’t find a way tos core. I definitely don’t think it was a 6-1 game. A tough one to explain.”

Cooper agreed.

“We defended,” he said. “We worked. We had 70 shot attempts at the net. We held them to barely 35 or something like that. There’s a lot to build on that. We didn’t really give them much the whole night. They did an exceptional job. Well, you look at it both ways. Did they do an exceptional job blocking shots or did we shoot them into them? They had 24 blocked shots. That’s a lot. That’s more than the shots on goal they had.”

The Bolts now travel to Philadelphia and to Pittsburgh over the weekend.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit garysheltonsports@gmail.com.

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