11/21 22:31 CST Cirelli, Point help Lightning top Blackhawks 4-2
Cirelli, Point help Lightning top Blackhawks 4-2
By MATT CARLSON
CHICAGO (AP) --- Anthony Cirelli and Brayden Point scored 2:39 apart midway
through the third period, and the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Chicago
Blackhawks 4-2 on Thursday night.
Mikhail Sergachev scored a power-play goal in the first period, and Cedric
Paquette added an empty-netter. Backup Curtis McElhinney made 32 saves for
Tampa Bay, which had dropped two in a row.
The Lightning played without NHL MVP Nikita Kucherov, who led the league last
season with 128 points. Kucherov is day to day after suffering an upper-body
injury in the second period of Tuesday's 3-1 loss at St. Louis.
Steven Stamkos, who leads the Lightning with seven goals and 20 points, was
held out of the second and third periods but was on the bench. He played 5:17
over nine shifts in the first.
Brent Seabrook and Dylan Strome scored for Chicago, and Corey Crawford made 31
stops. But the Blackhawks dropped their second straight since a four-game win
Tampa Bay earned its eighth consecutive victory against Chicago. The Blackhawks
haven't defeated the Lightning since a 1-0 overtime win on Oct. 24, 2015, four
months after Chicago beat Tampa Bay to win the Stanley Cup.
For most of the game, the Lightning checked closely and kept the Blackhawks on
Sergachev scored his first goal this season with 3:50 left in the first period.
He fired through a screen from the top of the slot and beat Crawford low on the
glove side on a power play.
Crawford made a left pad save on Cirelli's one-timer with 5:37 left in the
second to keep Chicago within a goal.
Seabrook tied it 8:27 into the third. He skated down the boards from the right
point to the goal line and then lifted a shot from a sharp angle that glanced
off the back of McElhinney's left shoulder and into the net.
Cirelli got the lead back for Tampa Bay 1:44 later on a deflection of Victor
Hedman's shot from between the circles. Point made it 3-1 with 7:37 left in the
third, tapping in Ondrej Palat's feed from across the slot.
Strome converted a rebound of Patrick Kane's shot to cut it to 3-2, but
Paquette sealed it with 59.2 seconds left.
NOTES: Kane extended his point streak to 11 games (eight goals, 12 assists).
... Kucherov is second on the Lightning with 18 points (six goals, 12 assists).
"Thought he'd be better when he got to the rink today, but he wasn't," coach
Jon Cooper said. ... F Cory Conacher took Kucherov's spot in the lineup. ...
Blackhawks F Drake Caggiula missed his fifth game under the concussion
protocol. ... Chicago F Andrew Shaw was in the lineup after missing Wednesday's
practice with a hip issue. ... D Luke Schenn was a healthy scratch for the
Lightning and F Dominik Kubalik was scratched for the Blackhawks, who dressed
Lightning: Host Anaheim on Saturday.
Blackhawks: At Dallas on Saturday.
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