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Mishkin's Extra Shift: Jets 4, Lightning 3

Radio broadcaster Dave Mishkin recaps Tampa Bay's 4-3 loss to Winnipeg on Saturday

by Dave Mishkin / TampaBayLightning.com

This one had an exciting finish. In the final 2:16 of regulation, the Lightning netted two sixth attacker goals and generated a handful of Grade-A looks. Also during that time, the Jets scored an empty-netter, a Kyle Connor tally that ended up being the game-winning goal.

But the most important segment of the game came well before those frantic final minutes. During a 21-second span in the second period, the Jets scored twice and built a 3-1 lead. The Lightning unsuccessfully challenged the first of those goals and, as a result, were assessed a penalty. On the ensuing power play, the Jets immediately scored again.

So for more than half of the game, the Jets played with a 3-1 lead. And they played very well with that 3-1 lead. Up until Steven Stamkos scored the first of the sixth-attacker goals (that tally was the 400th of his NHL career), the Jets limited Lightning scoring chances. Their structure was tight, so they took away the Lightning's time and space. They also produced several additional scoring chances - fortunately for the Lightning, Andrei Vasilevskiy kept the deficit at 3-1 and gave his team a chance to rally.

Of course, there were the 27 minutes of so prior to those goals. The Lightning looked flat at the start of the game and the Jets dominated play in the early minutes. They also grabbed the lead before the game was two minutes old. But the Lightning pushed back in the latter part of the frame and carried play during that timeframe. They tied the score in the final minute of the first - Victor Hedman intercepted a Winnipeg outlet pass and moments later, tucked in a rebound from the top of the crease. The Lightning carried momentum into the beginning of the second. But that stretch ended when the Jets went on the game's first power play chance at 5:25 of the frame. While they didn't score on that man-advantage, they created some dangerous looks and built momentum of their own. Less than two minutes after the penalty ended, the Jets scored the first of those two critical second period goals.

It's not easy to have to play from behind - and that was the Lightning's predicament for much of this game. In contrast, they only trailed at one point during the three-game winning streak they brought into this contest. But also, credit the Jets for defending well with that lead and keeping a Lightning rally at bay until the final minutes.

Lightning Radio Three Stars of the Game (as selected by Phil Esposito):

1. Nikolaj Ehlers - Jets. PPG.

2. Josh Morrissey - Jets. Two assists.

3. Andrei Vasilevskiy - Lightning.

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