Tampa Bay Lightning suffers first series loss to New Jersey Devils

NEWARK, NJ - APRIL 16: Andrei Vasilevskiy
NEWARK, NJ - APRIL 16: Andrei Vasilevskiy /

The Tampa Bay Lightning will look to get back on track in Game Four after suffering a 5-2 loss to the New Jersey Devils in Game Three.

You can’t win them all. The Tampa Bay Lightning suffered the first loss of their Round One series with the New Jersey Devils as they fell 5-2 at the Prudential Center in Newark. On the bright side, the Bolts still leads the series, 2-1. 

After a relatively uneventful first, Lightning forward Alex Killorn rushes out of the locker room and scores a Power Play Goal less than a minute into the game. Killorn has scored in all three games so far and has five points overall.

About halfway through the second period, Devils forward Taylor Hall scores his second of the playoffs to tie the game. This definitely took a little bit of wind out of the sails of the Lightning.

Tampa Bay Lightning
Tampa Bay Lightning /

Tampa Bay Lightning

During the first two periods, it seemed as if Steven Stamkos was a step behind each play. Stamkos went into the game with two points so far in the playoffs and no goals since March 3 against the Philadelphia Flyers. However, come the third period Stammer came out ready and scored the second power-play goal of the night.

Then, a series of penalties hurt the Bolts. Cedric Paquette was called for Tripping and sent off to the sin bin. A minute later, Too Many Men On The Ice is called, causing a 5 on 3 for the Devils.

These two penalties result in a Power Play Goal for the Devils to tie the game. Later on, Devils forward Stefan Noesen is able to get past Lightning netminder Andrei Vasilevskiy and take the lead for the first time in the game, and for the first time in the playoffs.

At this point, there was still hope here in the Bolts Nation for a Tampa Bay Lightning comeback. Unfortunately, the Devils were able to score not one, but two empty-net goals and ultimately secure the 5-2 victory for the New Jersey Devils.

Takeaways from the Game

The Devils had seven power plays and converted on one, which allowed them to tie the game. Whether or not the referees are calling an exuberant amount of penalties against the Bolts, some of which could easily be considered controversial, the Bolts simply cannot allow these kinds of simple mistakes to happen.

The good news is, the Lightning scored two Power Play Goals in the five opportunities they were awarded. If the Lightning is able to take advantage of the Devils mistakes, it should be smooth sailing for Games Four and Five.

The Bolts Nation should not be discouraged by this game. A team has to lose every now and then in order to succeed in the long run. If the Bolts went through this series perfectly, it could easily get in the players’ heads and cause the team to crumble by Round Two.

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Game Four of the series is set to kick off on Wednesday at the Prudential Center in Newark. After the Lightning’s loss in Game Three, the series will head back to the Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida on Saturday.