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Tampa Bay Lightning loses final game of road trip to Nashville

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A successful road trip ended poorly for a tired Tampa Bay Lightning team Monday night.

The Bolts lost a 3-1 game to the Nashville Predators Monday night in the final game of a five-game road trip. Tampa Bay won the first four games, but they lacked the jump in their step against Nashville.

“It was just one of those games,” Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. We needed to get the lead, and that was it. We didn’t get it. We kicked the first one into our own net, so right then we’re chasing a little bit. We had a couple early chances to score. We didn’t. (Pekka) Rinne was on his game, and after that, they skated. It just felt like we were chasing the whole time, so that was it.”

P.K. Subban scored twice in the second period as Nashville took a 3-0 lead. Tyler Johnson scored late in the game for the Lightning.

“We had chances,” Cooper said. ?We came out with a little jump in the second. We had some chances to score. We didn’t, and then we couldn’t get the kill. We need the penalty kill there. You take those back-to-back penalties, even the second one, they scored right after the guy got out. That hurts a little bit, but ultimately, we had 14 shots after two periods. It’s tough to score when you’re not generating too much. We just looked like a tired group, and we’ve got to regroup because that was a winnable hockey game for us and we let it slip. We’ve got to regroup for Wednesday.

Ben Bishop stopped only 26 of 29 shots.

Tampa Bay returns home Wednesday night to play Philadelphia.

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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