The Tampa Bay Lightning prevented a sweep in their season series with the Boston Bruins, earning a convincing 4-0 win at Amalie Arena on Tuesday night to tie the B’s atop the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference.
The Bolts scored three times in the second period and once in the third despite missing captain and No. 1 center Steven Stamkos due to a lower body injury.
The Bruins fall to 49-18-12 with the loss, while the Lightning improve to 53-23-4.
Here’s how it all went down:
Bruins rookie defenseman Charlie McAvoy returned to game action after missing the last 15 games with a knee injury.
TRYING TO BREAK THROUGH
Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask played fantastic in the first period, stopping all 16 shots he faced. He also came up clutch on the only full penalty kill the B’s had in the frame (they did commit a penalty with six seconds remaining in the stanza).
The Bruins were outshot 16-7 and trailed 24-21 in shot attempts, forcing Rask to be sharp all period.
Boston’s best scoring chance came with 2:31 left in the period when Patrice Bergeron’s shot from the slot rang the right post and bounced back into play. It came at the end of a dominant shift for the Bruins’ top line at 5-on-5.
McAvoy played eight shifts and logged six minutes of ice time in his first period of action following a month off due to injury.
Brian Gionta scored for the Bruins, but the goal correctly was called back because he played the puck with a high stick to control it before shooting.
LIGHTNING ON THE BOARD
Soon after Gionta’s tally was waved off, the Lightning opened the scoring when Brayden Point scored his 31st goal of the season at 5:01 of the period. Nikita Kucherov picked up his 60th assist of the season on the goal, while Braydon Coburn also earned a helper.
The Lightning went up 2-0 when Victor Hedman’s blast from the point found its way through traffic and past Rask.
Six minutes later, the Lightning increased their lead to 3-0 when a scramble in the crease produced a bouncing puck that Chris Kunitz jammed into the net for a goal. The B’s challenged the play for goalie interference, but the initial goal call stood.
The Lightning finished with a plus-3 edge over the B’s in shots on goal and a plus-2 edge in shot attempts during the second period.
POURING IT ON
The Lightning continued to take it to the Bruins in the third period and scored another goal to go up 4-0. J.T. Miller tallied his 23rd goal of the season with a rocket of a shot on a 2-on-1 rush. It was an unassisted goal.
The B’s will remain in Florida to play the Panthers on Thursday night. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. ET.
Thumbnail photo via Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports