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game recap

Ben Bishop wills Lightning past Kings

Goalie makes 31 saves, Tampa Bay without Victor Hedman in win

by Abbey Mastracco / Correspondent

LOS ANGELES -- Ben Bishop made 31 saves and Brian Boyle scored the game-winning goal to help the Tampa Bay Lightning defeat the Los Angeles Kings 2-1 at Staples Center on Monday.

Tyler Johnson also scored his 13th of the season for the Lighting (21-20-4).

"Since the four-game losing streak we've strung together three straight," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "We were very fortunate tonight to get the two points, but the guys are battling hard."

Kyle Clifford scored and Peter Budaj made 27 saves for the Kings (22-18-4).


WATCH: All Lightning vs. Kings highlights


"Their defense comes around the boards a lot and keeps a lot of pucks in. They created a lot of turnovers that way," Kings forward Trevor Lewis said. "I don't think we were quick enough there especially in the beginning. Budaj held us in there and Clifford got us going a little bit, but it was a slow start."

Clifford put Los Angeles up 1-0 at 8:33 in the first period when Bishop mishandled a puck along the back boards. The Kings forward beat Bishop back to the net and scored on a backhanded wraparound shot.

Johnson tied it 1-1 at 14:33 by one-timing a pass from Jonathan Drouin past Budaj.

Video: TBL@LAK: Clifford steals puck to bury wraparound

"They played man-to-man D, so if you beat one guy somebody's going to get open or somebody's going to try," Drouin said. "If I beat one guy the other guy is going to come at me and something's going to open, so [Kings forward Tanner] Pearson came and I spun off him and [Johnson] went backdoor, created a lane there and got a good shot off."

Boyle put Tampa Bay ahead when he banked a loose puck off Dustin Brown and into the net to make it 2-1 at 18:47 of the second. 

Kings captain Anze Kopitar did not play because of an illness.

"As a team everyone has to step up," Lewis said. "You lose your top guy like that everyone's going to have to help out. Unfortunately, we were missing a little bit of that today."   

Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman left warmups and was ruled out, also because of an illness.


Goal of the game

Budaj stopped Valtteri Filppula's initial shot but the forward stayed with it, banked a pass off Budaj's pad for Boyle, who shot it off Brown and into the net.

Video: TBL@LAK: Boyle chips home rebound off Kings defender


Save of the game

Budaj laid out to stop a heavy one-timer by Nikita Kucherov to keep the score 2-1 with 5:02 left to play.

Video: TBL@LAK: Budaj gets across quickly to deny Kucherov


Unsung performance of the game

After being scratched for the past nine games, Kings forward Andy Andreoff returned to the lineup as a last-minute addition in place of Kopitar and made his presence known with five hits and won 7-of-10 faceoffs.


Highlight of the game

Drouin had a tight window to pass to Johnson, but he put the puck right on his stick, allowing Johnson to one-time it past Budaj from close range.

"It's not so much that he found Johnson, but it he put it right in Johnson's wheelhouse," Cooper said. "When you're able to do that, you give guys a chance to score."

Video: TBL@LAK: Johnson one-times Drouin's feed past Budaj


They said it

"He was huge. He's so good at playing the puck and so good making passes, stopping forechecks. I'm sure he didn't see it going that way when they got their first goal, but there's no panic. We know he's going to continue to leave the net and make plays. He was big with some big, big saves point blank. Two or three in the slot at first. Really all game. We had to kill some penalties and he's going to be our best penalty killer." -- Lightning forward Brian Boyle on goalie Ben Bishop


"I think we have to do better being connected as five guys. Tightening up the defensive zone would allow us to get in the offensive zone more." -- Kings forward Kyle Clifford


Need to know

The Kings participated in Martin Luther King Jr. Day by having Willie O'Ree, the first NHL player of African descent, drop the ceremonial puck. Clips from some of Dr. King's speeches, including his "I have a dream" speech, were played throughout on the Staples Center scoreboard, and throughout the concourse during intermissions and media timeouts. … Bishop's win was his first at Staples Center.


What's next

Lightning: At the Anaheim Ducks on Tuesday (10 p.m. ET; SN, SN1, PRIME, SUN, NHL.TV)

Kings: Host the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday (10:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, NHL.TV)


Video: Bishop, Boyle lead Bolts past Kings, 2-1

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