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Stanley Cup Final

Lightning winning special teams' battle; losing series

Tuesday, 04.19.2011 / 6:40 PM

By Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer / 2011 ECQF: Pittsburgh-Tampa Bay Live Blog

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2011 ECQF: Pittsburgh-Tampa Bay Live Blog
Lightning winning special teams' battle; losing series
Despite the fact the Tampa Bay Lighting are winning the special teams battle and receiving better-than-average goaltending from veteran Dwayne Roloson, they find themselves down a game to the Pittsburgh Penguins in this best-of-7 Eastern Conference quarterfinal round.

Lightning coach Guy Boucher knows now is the time for his players to start producing 5-on-5.

"It's funny, I listen to the other coaches in the League talk about how it has to be special teams in the playoffs, but not in this series," Boucher said. "We're losing the series right now and are clearly winning the special teams battle in both penalty-killing (15-for-15) and power-play (4-of-11). But reality is they have guys like (Arron) Asham and those other fourth-line guys scoring goals every game while 5 on 5 and that makes a difference."

The Penguins have actually scored seven 5-on-5 goals from six different players in this series. The Lightning have gotten just two goals while 5-aside -- by Nate Thompson and Eric Brewer.

"Our guys haven't scored 5 on 5 every game, so right now (Pittsburgh) is a little sharper around our net 5-on-5 than we are around their net. Having said that, we're aware we're not going to score six goals while 5-on-5 either. If we do score one or two on the power-play, it has to be enough at home to win the game."

SERIES NOTE: The Eastern Conference quarterfinal-round Game 5 between the Lightning and Penguins at Consol Energy Center on Saturday has been scheduled for noon ES.

Quote of the Day

You know what? We've played in some pretty special buildings along this playoff run so far. You start in Detroit, you go to Montreal, you come here … I think it's the first team to beat three Original Six teams to get to the Final if I'm not mistaken. That says how tough the road has been. Those are tough places to win.

— Lightning forward Steven Stamkos after Game 7 win vs. Rangers on Friday in New York