Is every game going to be like this?
Are the Tampa Bay Lightning going to fall behind 2-0 after every first period?
Are they going to, somehow, manage a comeback to win?
The Lightning won its second game in as many tries Saturday night, overcoming a lackluster first period to win over the New Jersey Devils.
“Yeah, the big joke in our staff room was a two-goal lead is the hardest lead to protect,” said coach Jon Cooper. “Then somebody else said, ‘How would we know because we’ve never had one?’ It’s tough going down early like that. The only part that’s helped us, I guess, is that we’ve had a lot of game to get ourselves back. We’ve got a group that’s been together for a while and been in all sorts of different situations. Clearly not ideal to go down by two, especially when you got a guy like (Corey) Schneider in the net and a well-structured team, but the boys found a way.”
The Devils scored a third goal in the second period that was wiped off by an offsides call.
“That was off,” Cooper said. “I felt it was off by quite a bit and so usually we make a call on the bench so we can check it. But everybody’s checking everything all the time. It helps out now having- we never had a TV on the bench before, so this year the NHL’s put the TVs on the bench so that really helps. That was a big moment for us that that worked out.”
The Bolts fell behind 2-0, but came back on goals by Steven Stamkos and Alex Killorn. Valterri Filppula scored in the third period for the win.
“Yeah we don’t want to make a habit of that, but it’s a good quality to have when you do get into that situation,” Stamkos said. “So, we have to start games a little better. I know we’re confident in our ability to create offense, but [you] can’t count on having our goaltender make some big saves to keep it within reach. So we’ll obviously look to improve in trying to start the game on time.”
Andrei Vasilevskiy won his first game of the year in goal.