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Game Recap

Lightning 5, Penguins 1

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:46 AM

Associated Press

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Lightning 5, Penguins 1
Tampa Bay Lightning 5, Pittsburgh Penguins 1

PITTSBURGH (AP) - Martin St. Louis didn't need three broken teeth to provide any more motivation in helping the Tampa Bay Lightning bounce back in their first-round series against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

"My motivation is we were down 1-0," St. Louis said. "It's not because I lose teeth."

Either way, the diminutive forward put some bite back in a Lightning offense by scoring a goal and adding an assist in a 5-1 victory Friday night in Game 2 of the best-of-seven series.

Defenseman Eric Brewer led the charge with a goal and two assists and the Lightning rediscovered their high-powered offense to blow the game open with a three-goal first period. The five goals - capped by Mattias Ohlund's empty-netter - were the most the Lightning have scored in a road playoff game.

The eruption came two nights after they were utterly stymied by Marc-Andre Fleury's acrobatic 32-save performance in a 3-0 series-opening loss. And it was a forgettable game for St. Louis, who was livid no penalty was called after he was cracked across the face by Zbynek Michalek's errant stick in the second period.

Lightning captain Vincent Lecavalier wasn't surprised by how St. Louis responded.

"I don't think three teeth would hold him off for tonight," said Lecavalier, who scored a goal.

Nate Thompson also scored, while Simon Gagne had three assists. Dwayne Roloson made 35 saves, including 14 in the final period.

Craig Adams scored for the Penguins, who came out flat and will have two days to regroup for Game 3 at Tampa Bay on Monday night.

Pittsburgh was undone by sub-par goaltending from Fleury, uncharacteristic defensive miscues and a more familiar problem of lacking finish. That's something the team's struggled with in playing much of the final half of its season without captain Sidney Crosby (concussion) and Evgeni Malkin (knee).

Fleury wasn't pleased with his 16-save outing.

"They do have a good offense, but I was still hoping to definitely do better than tonight," Fleury said. "I'll have to if we want to keep winning."

Another concern is the Penguins' anemic power play, which went 0-for-7. Pittsburgh is 0 for 13 in the series and has converted just six of its past 79 power-play opportunities over the past 25 games.

"I think we have to understand what the problem and the situation is and we didn't execute very well on the power play tonight," coach Dan Bylsma said. "We have to be much better to think we're going to have a chance to have success."

The Lightning not only had a few calls go their way, they also capitalized on two of six chances. This was after Lightning coach Guy Boucher questioned how the Penguins had a 6-1 advantage in power-play opportunities in Game 1.

St. Louis' power-play goal in the final minute of the second period was essentially the backbreaker, putting Tampa Bay up 4-1 after the Penguins had dominated much of the period.

"Any playoff game when you're up 2-0 right away on your first three shots is important," Lecavalier said. "It gave us a lot of confidence."

Brewer opened the scoring on the Lightning's first shot on goal 2:02 in. Driving up the right side on a 2-on-1, he snapped a high shot beating Fleury on the short side.

Lecavalier scored on the power play just under 5 minutes later. Brewer kept the play in the Penguins zone by batting the puck out of the air at the left point. The Lightning eventually worked it down to Gagne in the left corner, where he fed a pass in front to Lecavalier, who had a step on defender Kris Letang, and stuffed it in.

Thompson scored with 2:58 left in the frame, capitalizing on a several Penguins breakdowns. After usually reliable defenseman Paul Martin whiffed on a bouncing puck in front of the Pittsburgh bench, Steve Downie burst up the right wing on a 2-on-1.

Fleury got his right pad out to stop Downie's hard low shot, but left a fat rebound which Thompson swept in while driving to the front.

"Don't give up 2-on-1s, really," defenseman Brooks Orpik said, regarding what adjustments the Penguins need to make. "We kind of left Fleury out to dry. And then a power-play goal where we didn't cover the guy in front. It's not really too complicated."

Lecavalier and the Lightning didn't spend too much time celebrating their victory.

"You've got to be happy with what we did tonight," he said. "But at the same time, we've got to carry on here."

NOTES: Earlier in the day, Pens coach Dan Bylsma said there was no update on Sidney Crosby's status while adding he didn't sense the captain having any more urgency to return now that the playoffs have begun. "I haven't sensed anything to do with trying to get back earlier or feeling that pressure at all - not one bit," Bylsma said. Crosby, who's missed 42 games because of a concussion, is watching from the press box while wearing a headset to communicate with an assistant coach on the bench. ... The Lightning lost consecutive games only nine times in the regular season, with the longest skid 0-2-2 last month.

scoring summary
1st Period
Eric Brewer (1) ASST: Simon Gagne (1), Victor Hedman (1)
1 - 0 TBL
PPG - Vincent Lecavalier (1) ASST: Simon Gagne (2), Martin St. Louis (1)
2 - 0 TBL
Nate Thompson (1) ASST: Steve Downie (1), Eric Brewer (1)
3 - 0 TBL
2nd Period
Craig Adams (1) ASST: Arron Asham (1)
3 - 1 TBL
PPG - Martin St. Louis (1) ASST: Simon Gagne (3), Eric Brewer (2)
4 - 1 TBL
3rd Period
SHG - EN - Mattias Ohlund (1) ASST: NONE
5 - 1 TBL
penalty summary
1st Period
Max Talbot  Slashing against  Dominic Moore
Martin St. Louis  Hooking against  Zbynek Michalek
Steve Downie  Too many men/ice - bench
Jordan Staal  Boarding against  Mattias Ohlund
Alex Kovalev  Hi-sticking against  Dominic Moore
Steven Stamkos  Interference against  Chris Kunitz
2nd Period
Ryan Malone  Closing hand on puck
Kris Letang  Interference against  Nate Thompson
Pavel Kubina  Hi-sticking against  Chris Kunitz
Brooks Orpik  Cross checking against  Dominic Moore
3rd Period
Dana Tyrell  Hooking against  James Neal
Pavel Kubina  Interference against  Max Talbot
Max Talbot  Misconduct (10 min) against  Dominic Moore
Dominic Moore  Misconduct (10 min) against  Max Talbot
Pascal Dupuis  Roughing against  Dominic Moore
goalie stats
Dwayne Roloson
Dwayne Roloson
SA: 36TOI: 60:00
Saves: 35EV: 27 - 28
PIM: 0PP: 8 - 8
SV%: .972SH: 0 - 0
Marc-Andre Fleury
SA: 20TOI: 59:12
Saves: 16EV: 13 - 15
PIM: 0PP: 1 - 3
SV%: .800SH: 2 - 2