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Lightning's Boyle laments missed chance in Game 1

by Corey Long

TAMPA -- Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final must have felt like deja vu for Tampa Bay Lightning center Brian Boyle.

The Lightning took an early 1-0 lead against the Chicago Blackhawks on a goal by Alex Killorn, only to lose the lead and the game 2-1 on goals by Teuvo Teravainen and Antoine Vermette during a flurry in the latter stages of the third period.

Chicago leads the best-of-seven series 1-0 with Game 2 to be played at Amalie Arena on Saturday (7:15 p.m. ET, NBC, CBC, TVA Sports).

"It's definitely disappointing," Boyle said. "You wake up in the morning today, you should be a little angry ... that we had a chance to take Game 1. Again, it's just Game 1, but it was a good opportunity for us to start the series the way we wanted to."

If it sounds like Boyle is speaking from experience, he was in the same position with the New York Rangers in the 2014 Stanley Cup Final against the Los Angeles Kings.

In Game 1 of that series the Rangers stormed out to a 2-0 lead only to lose 3-2 in overtime. In Game 2, the Rangers had leads of 2-0 and 4-2 only to lose 5-4 in double overtime.

The Kings eventually won the Stanley Cup in five games with three wins after regulation. The Rangers held leads in all three of those games.

So excuse Boyle if he seemed upset by a missed opportunity to take a series lead against an opponent with Cup-winning experience. He's been through this before and doesn't want it to become a trend.

"Obviously, you can't change it now," Boyle said. "But understanding we shouldn't have any regrets in the morning when you wake up. We might today because there are things we could have done a little bit better that were in our control that we didn't do. However the series plays out, you don't want to look back saying we were a little bit passive there. If you want to make a mistake, do it being aggressive, have that confidence that got us here."

Boyle did think the effort was there for the most part. He mentioned the lack of scoring opportunities the Blackhawks were able to generate, and the strong play against Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane to keep them from getting quality chances around the net.

"We're here for a reason, I think we're a really good team," Boyle said. "We need to be able to understand that we can lock it down by playing our game, skating forward, forechecking, taking the puck out of their hands. They're a really good team, too, if you give them too much time and space. They can hurt you. We want to try to get to our strengths, using our speed and skating, create opportunities for ourselves. We need to understand we got to play our system and play it aggressively, knowing that you can't wake up in the morning having some regrets that we were a little too passive."

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