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Lightning gain home-ice against Canadiens by edging Caps

Apr 13, 2014, 5:53 PM EDT

Tampa Bay Lightning v Pittsburgh Penguins Getty Images

The Tampa Bay Lightning grabbed home-ice advantage over the Montreal Canadiens thanks to a shootout win (1-0 via “the skills competition”) against the Washington Capitals on Sunday.

It seems like a fitting victory in a number of ways. For one thing, the gap between the Lightning and Canadiens has been razor-thin this season; the Lightning won three of the four meetings, but most came down to the wire. The Bolts won 2-1 (SO) in Montreal on Nov. 12, the Habs won 2-1 (SO) in Tampa Bay on Dec. 28, the Lightning won 2-1 (OT) on the road on Feb. 1 and Tampa Bay closed out the only regulation win between the two by a score of 3-1 at home on April 1.

The loss was also fitting for the Capitals. Washington participated in an NHL-record 21 shootouts in 2013-14, going 10-11 in that regard. (Place “What if the Caps mastered the shootout instead of being merely average in that regard?” on the team’s pile of “What if?” questions.)

Amid a week of turmoil for the Lightning with Ben Bishop‘s injury and Ryan Malone‘s arrest, the Bolts must feel heartened to see strong play from Anders Lindback. He’s now a three-game winning streak with two shutouts, only only two goals in that span (stopping 77 out of 79 shots).

The towering 25-year-old still sports an ugly 8-12-2 record and poor individual stats over the long haul of this season, but the Lightning need him to play at his highest level against a Montreal team that clearly seems capable of pushing them in this upcoming first-round series.

  1. sportsfaninyyc - Apr 13, 2014 at 5:54 PM

    Habs in 6.

    • JC De La Torre - Apr 13, 2014 at 6:28 PM

      Tampa in 5

      • ravenscaps48 - Apr 13, 2014 at 6:29 PM

        I tell ya… TB didn’t look all that impressive against a heartless Caps team today. Regardless of who wins the series, you won’t be making it past Boston or Philadelphia

    • billiam55 - Apr 13, 2014 at 11:33 PM

      lol good one

    • blomfeld - Apr 13, 2014 at 11:38 PM


      • Eutaw's Finest - Apr 14, 2014 at 11:08 AM

        Blom is Ovi-obsessed. I don’t think there’s anyway to sugar coat that. If there’s an Ovi post? He’s on it like white on rice. I’d be willing to say Blom is upset the Caps didn’t make the playoffs. With no Ovi articles what could he POSSIBLY post about? Life ceases to exist without Ovi in the playoffs for him. Sorry for your loss Blom. Hopefully you can find another Russian player to ride in the coming weeks.

  2. terrier92 - Apr 13, 2014 at 5:56 PM

    Go Bolts beat those diving whinny Habs

  3. bsaures - Apr 13, 2014 at 6:09 PM

    I heard the reason Malone signed in in Tampa was because he heard the team was called the Lightning and thought he would get free LSD if he signed.

    • sportsfaninyyc - Apr 13, 2014 at 6:17 PM

      Ryan Coke.

  4. marino57 - Apr 13, 2014 at 6:31 PM

    I think Ben is back for game 1

  5. lsxphotog - Apr 13, 2014 at 11:02 PM

    I have a feeling that Bishop’s injury is much worse than the team was willing to reveal. They still aren’t sure if he’ll even play in the first round. That being said…it’s the playoffs. You gotta ride the hot hand. Bishop is the reason the Bolts are where they are – there’s now denying that. If Lindback plays to this caliber in the playoffs, you have to keep him in. That’s why it’s a hockey team. If players go down, other players need to be there to step up. I think the depth in the Tampa roster has proven that this season – losing Stamkos for 45 games and still finishing the year tying the franchise best 101 points. Drouin moves up next year…look out for that!

    • pfhockey - Apr 13, 2014 at 11:34 PM

      Lindback’s play is much better than Bishop’s as of late anyways.

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