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Late Lightning goal ends Rangers' 9-game win streak

by Corey Long /

TAMPA -- Valtteri Filppula scored a shorthanded goal with 1:05 remaining in the third period to give the Tampa Bay Lightning a 2-1 win against the New York Rangers at Amalie Arena on Thursday.

The Rangers (14-3-2) had a nine-game winning streak end. Dominic Moore scored to tie the game 1-1 with 6:17 remaining.

"It had to turn for us at some point, we had to get the break," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "Clearly that's a big break that the first shorthanded goal for us in the season would be a game-winner with a minute left. Our vibes were really good the past few weeks. We just haven't been pointing; [Thursday] we did."

Filppula's goal came after Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh lost control of the puck and J.T. Brown took it the other way to start a 2-on-1. Brown carried the puck through the offensive zone until Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist committed, and then he passed it to Filppula.

"I feel like we have been struggling with scoring goals and obviously struggling to get wins," Filppula said. "This should give us confidence moving forward."

McDonagh said the mistake came at the worst possible time.

"We had possession, [Derek] Stepan tried to get it to me, it bounced a little heavy on my stick, trying to settle it and they took advantage of the bounce," McDonagh said. "Obviously they've got some skilled guys on their [penalty kill] and were able to capitalize."

Stepan also took responsibility for the misplay that gave the Rangers their first regulation loss since Oct. 15.

"I put too much air on it and put [McDonagh] in a tough spot," Stepan said. "This one really stings, too, because we played a pretty good hockey game for 60 minutes and this mistake costs us two points."

It was the first game between the teams since the Lightning defeated the Rangers in Game 7 of the 2015 Eastern Conference Final.

Tampa Bay (9-9-3) played with five of its top nine forwards unavailable because of injury. Brown finished with 14:56 of ice time and had five hits and two takeaways.

"If I was going to say who was the guy that had the most impact on this game, it was J.T. Brown," Cooper said. "And give a lot of credit to the kids that came up from Syracuse (of the American Hockey League). They injected a lot of energy in our team."

Alex Killorn's third goal of the season gave the Lightning a 1-0 lead at 14:47 of the first period off a wrist shot that beat Lundqvist at the near post.

"It's a huge win for us right now with the way things have been going," Killorn said. "More importantly [it's] the way we won. At the end they score a big goal. To rebound off that and score another goal was the kind of hockey we like to play."

Early in the third period, Rangers forward Chris Kreider had a penalty shot after being hooked by Lightning defenseman Andrej Sustr on a breakaway. Tampa Bay goalie Ben Bishop made the save when Kreider tried to go to the five-hole.

"Hopefully we can build on this," Bishop said. "They are the best team in the League right now. It's always fun to get a chance to play against Lundqvist. It's not hard to get up for these games."

Moore scored his second goal of the season when he skated around the net and sent a wrist shot past Bishop at the far post with Jarret Stoll providing a screen.

"I liked a lot of things we did tonight, we spent a lot of time in their end," Rangers coach Alain Vigneault said. "We didn't get enough for it, part of that is on us and part of that ... give them a lot of credit. They defended well, blocked a lot of lanes and made it real hard for us. At the end of the night, this game is about two plays with the puck, two mistakes that we made and they made us pay for it, and we weren't able to make them pay for some of their mistakes."

New York had won 10 games in a row twice, during the 1939-40 and 1972-73 seasons.

"Tough way to lose, that's for sure," McDonagh said. "It stings a lot and we haven't felt this in a while. But at the same time it's a lesson that we've got to continue to play all 60 minutes."

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