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game recap

Lightning ease past Senators

Steven Stamkos scores third of season; Ottawa coach Guy Boucher loses to former team

by Chris Stevenson / Correspondent

OTTAWA -- Captain Steven Stamkos scored the game-winning goal for the Tampa Bay Lightning in a 4-1 win against the Ottawa Senators at Canadian Tire Centre on Saturday.

Vladislav Namestnikov and Valtteri Filppula each had a goal and an assist, and Alex Killorn scored his team-leading fourth goal for the Lightning (4-1-0), who got the first goal of the game for the first time this season.

Stamkos made it 2-0 at 6:45 with Ottawa forward Mike Hoffman off for hooking when he one-timed a shot into the top of the net from the left-wing circle on a pass by Namestnikov.

Chris Neil scored for the Senators (3-2-0), who lost for the first time in four games at home. It was the first game for Senators coach Guy Boucher against the Lightning since he was fired March 24, 2013 in his third season with Tampa Bay.

The Lightning began a six-game road trip Saturday.  

"For probably 40 or 50 minutes, it was the best we played all season," Stamkos said. "The first 20 minutes was definitely the most dominant and you build on that. Special teams were big again tonight, a couple of power play goals, a good job on the [penalty kill] and the goaltending was solid. It's a good way to start a trip."

Video: TBL@OTT: Filppula dekes Anderson, flips one top shelf

Andrei Vasilevskiy, making his second start of the season, had 27 saves for the Lightning. Craig Anderson made 31 saves for the Senators.

Namestnikov gave the Lightning a 1-0 lead on the power play at 2:36 of the second when he deflected a shot by defenseman Anton Stralman that was first tipped by forward Ondrej Palat.

Neil made it 2-1 at 15:27 of the second period when he followed up his shot and scored on a rebound.

The Lightning got third period goals from Killorn and Filppula to make it 4-1.

Tampa Bay outshot Ottawa 14-4 in the first period. The Lightning have not scored a first period goal this season.


Goal of the game

Neil shot from the left wing circle and followed the puck to the crease where it was mishandled by Vasilevskiy. Lightning defenseman Jason Garrison pushed the puck under Vasilevskiy and it slid to the goal line where Neil beat Tampa defenseman Victor Hedman to it.

Video: TBL@OTT: Neil follows his shot, puts home rebound


Save of the game

With the game 0-0 with 2:44 left in the first period, Senators forward Bobby Ryan let go a hard shot from the left-wing circle. Vasilevskiy split and got his glove on the puck.

Video: TBL@OTT: Vasilevskiy denies Ryan with a glove save


Highlight of the game

After some good work by Namestnikov in the right wing corner, he fed a pass across the slot to Stamkos who one-timed it in for his third goal of the season.

Video: TBL@OTT: Stamkos finishes one-timer from Namestnikov


Unsung moment of the game

Lightning coach Jon Cooper shuffled his lines, putting Stamkos with Nikita Kucherov and Namestnikov; Killorn with Filppula and Brayden Point, and Tyler Johnson with Jonathan Drouin and Ondrej Palat. The lines clicked with the Lightning getting off to a fast start.

Video: TBL@OTT: Palat tips in shot off Namestnikov for PPG


They said it

"The opening day lineup, it's not going to stay like that forever. You're testing guys out in different situations. You're trying to get guys going, trying to keep guys hot. I don't think it was so much our line shuffling. It was how we played the game. We had a good game tonight. We had a good game plan coming in, the boys executed it and when they do that, I don't think it really matter who's playing with who." -- Lightning coach Jon Cooper


"This group has been together for a while now so when you get shuffled, it's probably a little easier to get adjusted than some other teams. Those guys are great players, got a lot of speed, a lot of skill." -- Lightning captain Steven Stamkos


"They came out and played a better game than we did right from the start. Unfortunately, that's the way it's going to be some times. We didn't have our best today. I think we had a stretch there where we made a good push, but their goalie stood tall, bailed them out when they needed to be bailed out. We really didn't find the energy we needed to come back in the third." -- Ottawa Senators captain Erik Karlsson


Need to know

The Senators have given up the first goal in four of their five games. They gave up the first goal an NHL-high 51 times last season. … The Senators were 0-for-3 on the power play and are 1-for-14 on the season (7.1 percent), 27th in the League. … The Lightning hadn't scored a power-play goal in three games before going 2-for-4 against the Senators. … Karlsson was held without a point for the first time this season.


What's next

Lightning: At the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday (7:30 p.m. ET; SN1, TVA Sports, SUN, NHL.TV).

Senators: At Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday (10 p.m. ET; SNV, RDS2, TSN5, NHL.TV).


Video: Two power-play goals spark Lightning over Senators

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