MONTREAL (AP) -The Tampa Bay Lightning celebrated as though they had scored a key goal. And after further review, they had.
James Wright also scored for the Lightning, which went 2-0-1 after dropping the opener of a four-game road trip at Philadelphia on Monday.
Wright restored the Lightning's two-goal lead late in the second when he got credit for his second goal of the season on a goal mouth scramble that required a video review.
Despite the fact that the red light never went on, Tampa Bay celebrated after the puck went off Montreal defenseman Josh Gorges and crossed the goal line while the net was being dislodged. "If you're going to sell it you might as well do it the whole way, right? You go line up at center ice, too," Wright said.
Referee Dennis LaRue barely pointed at the puck in the net before making his way to the scorekeeper's bench. After reviewing the play by phone with the NHL office in Toronto, LaRue announced that his ruling stood.
"When he said, '... the ruling on the ice stands,' I didn't think he had called it a goal so I thought he was calling it off and I was a little bit down for a second," Wright said. "Then I saw everybody on our bench standing up so I was celebrating, too."
Antero Niittymaki made 36 saves in his third straight start for the Lightning (6-4-5).
"He's really solid," coach Rick Tocchet said. "He's seeing the puck and he's square and he's really given us a chance to win."
Brian Gionta scored his seventh goal for Montreal (8-9-0), which has lost four of six.
"It was an inconsistent effort the first half of the game," Gionta said. "I thought our second period was good, the start of the first was all right but we've given up goals late in periods, two of them tonight. That hurts the momentum and we've got to figure out a way to play better for 60 (minutes)."
Carey Price, who stopped 18 shots, fell to 3-7.
Malone opened the scoring with his 10th goal in 15 games on a power play at 10:09.
Lightning captain Vincent Lecavalier recorded his second straight assist when Tanguay's third goal of the season put Tampa Bay up 2-0 with 46.3 seconds left in the first.
Tanguay, who signed a one-year deal with the Lightning after he failed to receive an offer from Montreal, scored for the second straight game when he flipped a rebound of Malone's shot from the left side past Price for his third goal.
Gionta drew the Canadiens within 2-1 with a power-play goal midway through the second.
The Lightning regained their two-goal margin after Wright got credit for his second of the season at 18:02.
Limited to one point in his first seven games with Tampa Bay, Tanguay earned an assist on Wright's goal for his seventh point in six games.
"It's coming around," Tanguay said. "The last five or six games I'm starting to pick up my game a little bit and starting to skate a little better, and tonight I got a couple of bounces coming my way."
NOTES: Rookie Lightning D Victor Hedman didn't play. Hedman, chosen second overall by Tampa Bay in this year's draft, sat out for precautionary reasons after a hit by Ottawa's Chris Neil knocked him out of Thursday's 3-2 overtime loss to the Senators. ... Montreal C Kyle Chipchura and LW Gregory Stewart were healthy scratches for a second straight game in favor of C Tom Pyatt and RW Ryan White, who made their NHL debuts Thursday. ... D Jay Leach, picked up by Montreal off waivers from New Jersey on Friday, didn't play.
|PPG - Ryan Malone (10) ASST: Martin St. Louis (14), Vincent Lecavalier (11)|
1 - 0 TBL
|Alex Tanguay (3) ASST: Ryan Malone (4), Vincent Lecavalier (12)|
2 - 0 TBL
|PPG - Brian Gionta (7) ASST: Jaroslav Spacek (5), Scott Gomez (9)|
2 - 1 TBL
|James Wright (2) ASST: Alex Tanguay (6), Jeff Halpern (2)|
3 - 1 TBL
|Jaroslav Spacek Hi-sticking against Ryan Malone|
|Zenon Konopka Tripping against Brian Gionta|
|Paul Mara Tripping against Alex Tanguay|
|Vincent Lecavalier Roughing against Mike Cammalleri|
|Josh Gorges Tripping against Alex Tanguay|
|Paul Mara Holding against Drew Miller|