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Lightning’s seven-game winnings streak stopped by Panthers

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A huge second period was enough for the Florida Panthers to stop all of the momentum of the Tampa Bay Lightning Saturday night in Sunrise.

The Lightning, which had won seven straight games and entered this one hoping to tie the record for the most the franchise had ever won in a row, were overwhelmed in the second period and went on to lose a 5-2 decision to the Panthers. The Panthers outshot the Lightning 19-5 in the period.

After two periods, coach Jon Cooper felt that Ben Bishop had seen enough. Bishop allowed four goals on 30 shots through two periods. Andrej Vasilevskiy came on, but Cooper pulled his goaltender with a little less than 10 minutes to play.

“This is behind us,” said Cooper. “The question is how we respond on Wednesday.”

For the Bolts, Victor Hedman and J.T. Brown scored to make the final a bit closer.

The Lightning is home on Wednesday night against Toronto before the all-star break.

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

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