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game recap

Stamkos, Kucherov keep streaks going in Lightning win

Forwards score against Red Wings for point in 11th straight game

by Corey Long / Correspondent

TAMPA -- Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov each extended his point streak to 11 games for the Tampa Bay Lightning in a 3-2 win against the Detroit Red Wings at Amalie Arena on Thursday.

Stamkos and Kucherov are the seventh pair of teammates to begin a season with an 11-game point streak and the first to do it since the 1992-93 season.

They also tied Martin St. Louis for the Lightning record for a point streak to begin the season. 


[WATCH: All Red Wings vs. Lightning highlights]


"It's icing on the cake right now," Stamkos said. "We're happy to be of a historic start for this franchise and we're looking to continue that. If our streak continues to help the team win then we're both very happy."

Brayden Point also scored and Andrei Vasilevskiy made 29 saves for Tampa Bay (9-1-1), which has won each of the past four games. The Lightning set their record with a sixth straight home win to start the season.

Frans Nielsen scored twice for the Red Wings (4-6-1), who have lost six consecutive games. Jimmy Howard made 35 saves.

Stamkos scored at 6:22 of the third period to give the Lightning a 2-1 lead. Kucherov sent a cross-ice pass to Stamkos, who scored on a one-timer from left circle during a power play.

Kucherov also scored on the power play to tie it 1-1 at 16:33 of the first. His slap shot got past Howard while Vladislav Namestnikov was providing a screen.

"We did a good job of execution today," Kucherov said. "The power play was good. We gave up a goal in the first but got it back." 

Video: DET@TBL: Kucherov unleashes wicked wrister for PPG

Nielsen gave the Red Wings a 1-0 lead with a shorthanded goal at 14:18 of the first when he jumped in front of an errant pass to start a 2-on-1 break and beat Vasilevskiy with a wrist shot on the glove side.

"We've got to find a way to stay out of the box," Nielsen said. "We've had some bad [games] and some really good [games] where we feel like we've deserved better. We can't do anything else but try and keep our head high and go out [and] do our best every day, come back and see if we can get a win on Saturday."

Point gave the Lightning a 3-1 lead at 17:04 of third period. Yanni Gourde won a battle behind the net and found Point uncovered at the hashmarks where he beat Howard with a snap shot on the glove side.

Nielsen made it 3-2 with 1:49 remaining with a power-play goal.

"When you take too many mistakes it's hard for the [penalty kill] to keep killing them," Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg said. "Howard made some great saves for us. I thought we battled good from the start and got that first goal from [Nielsen]. It's always tough when you get [called] for too many men. It shouldn't happen but it happens and it's even harder when they score on it."

Video: DET@TBL: Nielsen buries second goal on the power play

Goal of the game

Gourde and Ondrej Palat were able to keep the puck in the zone and draw Red Wings defenders away, freeing up Point for the game-winning goal.

Video: DET@TBL: Point doubles Lightning's lead with wrister


Save of the game

Vasilevskiy made a sliding save to deny Zetterberg on a rebound at 11:15 of the first period. 

"I wasn't perfect tonight, I gave up rebounds," Vasilevskiy said. "But the team played well and helped me. Some games I will help them."

Video: DET@TBL: Vasilevskiy stones Tatar, Zetterberg


Highlight of the game

Three Red Wings players over committed to Kucherov, which allowed him to make a cross-ice pass to Stamkos for the one timer. 

"[Kucherov] did a great job of selling the job and faking it," Stamkos said. "Teams are going to have to decide who they want to overplay. On that play, they overplayed him and I got an open net off a great pass."

Video: DET@TBL: Stamkos one-times Kucherov's feed for PPG

They said it

"[Stamkos and Kucherov] are exceptional players. I truly believe, whatever the sport is, you have to have some special players. It's a team sport but you need those guys ... We're very fortunate to have a few of them and those are two that rise to the top." -- Lightning coach Jon Cooper


"We had two great kills in the first period. We probably gained momentum from the kills because we had done such an excellent job on it. And then we take a too many men penalty that's totally inexcusable. One-hundred percent inexcusable ... Those are veteran players making that mistake. It can't happen." -- Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill


Need to know

Vasilevskiy got his 50th NHL win in his 100th game. His eight-game winning streak ties Nikolai Khabibulin for second longest in Lightning history. ... Red Wings forward Dylan Larkin has gone 10 games without scoring a goal. … Tampa Bay has won nine straight against Detroit. 

What's Next

Red Wings: At the Florida Panthers on Saturday (7 p.m.; FS-F, FS-D, NHL.TV)

Lightning: Host the Anaheim Ducks on Saturday (7 p.m.; SUN, PRIME, NHL.TV)


Video: Kucherov tallies two points as Lightning edge Wings

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