The Lightning got the bounce back performance they needed on Tuesday, defeating the Canadiens 3-1 at the Bell Centre in Montreal.
Tampa Bay was displeased with the effort put forth in Saturday's loss to Ottawa, feeling their game lacked consistency and attention to detail in the defensive zone. In response, the Bolts shuffled their lines and defensive pairs at practices on Monday and Tuesday.
It was Montreal who grabbed the lead first, however. Jeff Petry gave the Habs a 1-0 lead with less than five minutes to play in the first period with a power play goal fired from the top of the left circle.
Video: TBL@MTL: Coburn roofs puck from the high slot
The Bolts answered right back with perhaps their best shift of the season to close out the opening period.
Of Tampa Bay's seven shots on goal in the opening 20 minutes, four came in the final 93 seconds of the period, with Braydon Coburn capping the shift with a goal to tie the game at one. Steven Stamkos made the play for the Bolts, shielding a Montreal defender from the puck and feeding a wide-open Coburn for the shot.
The momentum carried over to the start of the second period with Stamkos and Tyler Johnson each scoring in the opening two minutes.
Stamkos recorded his fourth goal of the year on a power play 64 seconds into the period. The Lightning came out of a scrum along the boards with the puck and Victor Hedman fed Stamkos at the left circle for a one-timer that beat Monteral goaltender Carey Price.
57 seconds later, Tampa Bay capitalized on a Montreal line change to take a two-goal lead. Yanni Gourde started the breakout, feeding Ondrej Palat from behind the Lightning net with the Canadiens in the middle of a change at their bench. Palat cut into the offensive zone and found Johnson streaking to the net for the goal.
Up by two heading to the third period, the Lightning settled back and focused on defending the lead. While Montreal carried the majority of the play in the third, Tampa Bay withstood the pressure to hold onto the victory. Vasilevskiy ended the night with 33 saves, including 25 over the final two periods.
Video: TBL@MTL: Stamkos blasts power-play goal past Price
After leading the charge in calling for a stronger effort, Stamkos set the tone on Thursday. The Captain's work to hold off the Canadiens defender set up Coburn's goal and his power play goal in the second period would go on to serve as the game-winner.
The Bolts travel to Boston to face the Bruins in the finale of this six-game road trip on Thursday night.
MTL | 15:46 Jeff Petry (2) - Max Domi - PPG
TBL | 19:53 Braydon Coburn (1) - Nikita Kucherov, Steven Stamkos
TBL | 1:04 Steven Stamkos (4) - Victor Hedman, Nikita Kucherov - PPG
TBL | 2:01 Tyler Johnson (2) - Ondrej Palat, Yanni Gourde