Skip to main content

Bishop sets Lightning record with win vs. Sabres

by Corey Long

TAMPA -- Alex Killorn scored a power-play goal with 3:57 left in the third period to give the Tampa Bay Lightning a 2-1 win against the Buffalo Sabres at Amalie Arena on Saturday.

The sequence began when Sabres goalie Chad Johnson made a save on a one-timer from Tyler Johnson and tried to cover the loose puck. Tyler Johnson controlled the rebound and passed it to Killorn, who shot into the open side of the net.

"[Tyler] made a great play to kind of just hit it to a side because it was such a scramble," Killorn said. "I had it, I knew the goalie was out of position, but I just wanted to wait out [defenseman Mike] Weber in front of the net just to make sure I scored."

Tampa Bay (4-2-0) shook off a sluggish first period to snap a two-game losing streak and give goalie Ben Bishop the Lightning record with his 84th win.

"We didn't have a great start, we've got to be tougher to play against in our rink, but you know what, we found a way to win," Killorn said. "I mean we're lucky that we have a great goaltender who keeps us in a lot of these games. They could go the other way completely if he doesn't make a lot of those saves. Good teams find a way to win, but we have to be better than that."

Buffalo (1-4-0) scored first when Sam Reinhart, who was recently promoted to the top line by coach Dan Bylsma, scored his first NHL goal at 2:52 of the first period. Tyler Ennis gained possession of the puck behind the net off a turnover and placed a drop pass in the slot to Reinhart, the No. 2 pick of the 2014 NHL Draft who was playing his 14th NHL game.

"It was awesome, to get it early in the game, playing with these guys helped the confidence a lot," Reinhart said. "Obviously you anticipate first game, first shift to score ... get it over with, but to see it go in is definitely exciting and a relief."

Buffalo had a 16-3 shots advantage in the first period.

"We came out the right way ... put pressure on them," Reinhart said. "I think we've got to find way to continue that for a full 60. We still had our chances in the last two periods and still played some pretty good hockey at times."

Tampa Bay tied the game 1-1 at 13:41 of the second period on Vladislav Namestnikov's second goal of the season. He took control of a loose puck near center ice and beat Sabres defenseman Jake McCabe on the partial breakaway to send a backhand past Chad Johnson.

"He's hanging in there," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said of Namestnikov. "He's been fighting, fighting, fighting to find a spot in the lineup. He's getting his chance this year and surely making the best of it. I thought he was one of our bright sports up front tonight and the ice time he got he earned, and he kept getting it. He scores obviously a huge goal for us to tie the game, and you've just got to give kids like that credit because he's never quit."

Bishop made 31 saves and broke a tie with Nikolai Khabibulin, who won 83 games for the Lightning from 2001-04. Johnson finished with 20 saves.

"Well, I think we [ended] up with some good opportunities and some good pucks at him," Bylsma said. "There were some loose pucks in and around him that we had opportunities at. I know their second goal was not much different than their first goal. We get the power-play opportunity and we have a great chance at the net from Tyler Ennis and second chance from [Reinhart] ... and we don't score. He made one more save than we did [Saturday]."

View More

The NHL uses cookies, web beacons, and other similar technologies. By using NHL websites or other online services, you consent to the practices described in our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service, including our Cookie Policy.