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Carolina
Hurricanes
45-30-7
Tampa Bay
Lightning
24-40-18
OT
46 SOG
29 SOG
1st2nd3rdOTT
CAR
TBL
game recap

Hurricanes 4, Lightning 3, OT

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:51 AM

Associated Press

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Hurricanes 4, Lightning 3, OT
Carolina Hurricanes 4, Tampa Bay Lightning 3

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -Although the Carolina Hurricanes don't want to make a habit of falling behind their Southeast Division rivals, they suddenly seem to be thriving on it.

Eric Staal scored the tying and winning goals Saturday night to help Carolina overcome a three-goal deficit for a 4-3 overtime victory against the Tampa Bay Lightning. The previous night, the Hurricanes rallied from two goals down to beat Florida in their season-opener.

"We definitely don't always dig ourselves that hole, but it was nice to come back and show that character again," Staal said.

Mark Recchi, Janne Niskala and Vinny Lecavalier scored for Tampa Bay, which led 3-0 about 9 minutes into the second period. The loss denied new Lightning coach Barry Melrose his first victory since 1995, when he left coaching to join ESPN as an analyst.

"That wasn't a game," Melrose said. "We have a two-goal lead in the third period and we go out and we just stop working. We stopped doing the things we were doing in the first two periods. That's the gist of it."

Staal tied the score at 9:56 of the third period, prompting Lightning goalie Mike Smith to shatter his stick with two hard slams on the crossbar. Staal then got the game-winner from the left circle with 23.6 seconds remaining in the extra session.

Rod Brind'Amour and Matt Cullen also scored for Carolina.

Tampa Bay scored twice in a 2:07 span midway through the first period, matching its goal production in a pair of 2-1 losses to the New York Rangers a week earlier in the Czech Republic.

Recchi opened the scoring, tapping his own rebound past Hurricanes goalie Michael Leighton 8:20 in. Niskala, a rookie defenseman, scored his first goal on a power play at the 10:27 mark.

Lecavalier made it 3-0 with another power-play goal on a slap shot from the right circle 9 minutes into the second. Tampa Bay failed to score with a manpower advantage in its first two games.

Carolina broke through with 9 seconds remaining in the second period, when Brind'Amour redirected a shot by Joni Pitkanen past Smith. Brind'Amour set up Cullen's goal 1:56 into the third to make it 3-2.

"Tough loss," said Smith, who faced 20 shots in the third period. "It's frustrating when you're up 3-0 and we think we have the world by the finger and let up. ... We've got to play 60 minutes. It's as simple as that."

Smith finished with 42 saves. Leighton made 26 stops in his season debut.

Notes: Carolina recovered from a two-goal deficit to win its season opener against Florida on Friday night. ... Lightning defenseman Lukas Krajicek, acquired in a trade with Vancouver on Monday, finally resolved immigration issues and arrived only hours before playing alongside his new teammates. ... Game 2 of the American League championship series between the Tampa Bay Rays and Boston Red Sox was shown on television sets throughout the concourse during the game and on the video screen above the ice afterward.

scoring summary
1st Period
08:20
TBL
Mark Recchi (1) ASST: Matthew Carle (1), Jussi Jokinen (1)
1 - 0 TBL
10:27
TBL
PPG - Janne Niskala (1) ASST: Vinny Prospal (1), Jamie Heward (1)
2 - 0 TBL
2nd Period
09:01
TBL
PPG - Vincent Lecavalier (1) ASST: Martin St. Louis (1), Jamie Heward (2)
3 - 0 TBL
19:51
CAR
PPG - Rod Brind'Amour (2) ASST: Joni Pitkanen (1), Ray Whitney (1)
3 - 1 TBL
3rd Period
01:56
CAR
PPG - Matt Cullen (2) ASST: Rod Brind'Amour (1), Joni Pitkanen (2)
3 - 2 TBL
09:56
CAR
Eric Staal (1) ASST: Dennis Seidenberg (2), Tuomo Ruutu (1)
3 - 3 Tie
OT Period
04:36
CAR
Eric Staal (2) ASST: Ray Whitney (2)
4 - 3 CAR
penalty summary
1st Period
00:28
TBL
Ryan Malone  Slashing against  Tim Gleason
08:35
CAR
Wade Brookbank  Roughing against  Gary Roberts
13:46
CAR
Niclas Wallin  Interference against  Martin St. Louis
17:00
CAR
Tuomo Ruutu  Hi-sticking against  Vincent Lecavalier
17:17
TBL
Janne Niskala  Holding against  Chad LaRose
19:55
TBL
Vincent Lecavalier  Interference against  Rod Brind'Amour
2nd Period
06:19
TBL
Andrej Meszaros  Tripping against  Chad LaRose
07:06
CAR
Eric Staal  Slashing against  Matthew Carle
08:53
CAR
Michael Leighton  Tripping against  Ryan Malone
10:28
CAR
Niclas Wallin  Slashing against  Radim Vrbata
11:25
TBL
Ryan Malone  Tripping against  Dennis Seidenberg
16:27
TBL
Ryan Malone  Hooking against  Brandon Sutter
17:25
TBL
Jamie Heward  Hooking against  Brandon Sutter
19:38
TBL
Matthew Carle  Holding against  Brandon Sutter
3rd Period
00:51
TBL
Matthew Carle  Hooking against  Eric Staal
18:00
CAR
Sergei Samsonov  Delaying Game-Puck over glass
OT Period
NONE
goalie stats
Michael Leighton
SA: 29TOI: 64:32
Saves: 26EV: 18 - 19
PIM: 2PP: 7 - 9
SV%: .897SH: 1 - 1
Mike Smith
SA: 46TOI: 64:11
Saves: 42EV: 32 - 34
PIM: 0PP: 8 - 10
SV%: .913SH: 2 - 2