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Stamkos leads Lightning to seventh straight victory

The Lightning Captain scores three times to help the Bolts defeat the Rangers 6-3 on Monday night

by Jacob Lynn /

For the second straight game, Steven Stamkos set the tone.

On Saturday vs. Colorado, Stamkos led the way to a 7-1 victory with four points. Two days later, the Captain's hat trick spurred the Bolts to their seventh straight win, a 6-3 shelling of the Rangers at Amalie Arena.

Each of Stamkos' first two goals helped keep the Bolts in the game.

His first came less than two minutes after Kevin Hayes opened the scoring. On a power play, Victor Hedman fed Stamkos at the circle who wired a one-timer past Henrik Lundqvist to tie the game at one.

Video: NYR@TBL: Stamkos rips a one-timer top shelf for PPG

In the second period, Stamkos scored another power play goal in the exact same fashion, this time firing the shot past Lundqvist as he fell to the ice. Not only did the tally tie the game at two but it also marked the 700th point of Stamkos' career.

The Lightning took the lead for good midway through the second period with Ryan McDonagh scoring against his former team. Streaking down the wing, McDonagh fired a quick shot that Lundqvist couldn't stop.

After Anthony Cirelli gave the Bolts a two-goal lead, Stamkos finished off the hat trick. On the rush, Stamkos one-timed a feed from Ondrej Palat past Lundqvist to put Tampa Bay up 5-2. Monday was Stamkos' ninth career hat trick, helping him pass Martin St. Louis for the most in franchise history.

Jesper Fast and Cirelli traded goals late in the third to round out the scoring.

Stamkos' hat trick continues what has been a red-hot stretch for the Lightning Captain. During Tampa Bay's seven-game winning streak, Stamkos has scored eight goals and recorded 12 points during that stretch.

Video: NYR@TBL: Stamkos rips a one-timer for the hat trick

Cirelli's two goals marked the second multi-goal game of his career. Victor Hedman, Brayden Point and J.T. Miller all recorded a pair of assists.

Tampa Bay's win sets up a matchup between the top two teams in the Atlantic Division on Thursday night, as the Bolts and Maple Leafs face each other for the first time this season.

Scoring Summary
1st Period
NYR | 12:19 Kevin Hayes (6) - Ryan Strome, Vladislav Namestnikov
TBL | 14:09 Steven Stamkos (13) - Victor Hedman, J.T. Miller - PPG
NYR | 15:07 Kevin Hayes (7) - Jimmy Vesey

2nd Period
TBL | 6:19 Steven Stamkos (14) - Victor Hedman, Brayden Point - PPG
TBL | 12:42 Ryan McDonagh (3) - Brayden Point, Nikita Kucherov

3rd Period
TBL | 10:17 Anthony Cirelli (7) - Erik Cernak
TBL | 10:41 Steven Stamkos (15) - Ondrej Palat, Braydon Coburn
NYR | 17:34 Jesper Fast (3) - Filip Chytil
TBL | 19:21 Anthony Cirelli (8) - Alex Killorn, J.T. Miller - EN

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