NHL Game Summary - Boston at Tampa Bay
(Friday, October 10th)
Final Score: Tampa Bay 5, Boston 1
Tampa, FL (Sports Network) - Cory Stillman scored two goals and assisted on another, while Nikolai Khabibulin made 29 saves, as Tampa Bay defeated Boston, 5-1, at the St. Pete Times Forum.
Dimitry Afanasenkov, Brad Richards and Tim Taylor also tallied scores for the Lightning, who won the Southeast Division last year and made the playoffs for the second time in franchise history. Tampa Bay defeated the Capitals in the first round of the playoffs before bowing out to the eventual Stanley Cup champion New Jersey Devils in the second round.
P.J. Axelsson scored the lone goal for Boston, which is still in search of its first win of the season after tying New Jersey in the season-opener.
Felix Potvin made just 16 saves on 20 shots for the Bruins before being lifted after two periods of play. Andrew Raycroft came in for the third and he stopped four shots.
Stillman scored only 1:54 into the game on the power play to give Tampa Bay a 1-0 lead. Richards had the puck at the top of the right circle and fed a pass behind the net to Martin St. Louis. The winger then dished a perfect feed to Stillman in front of the goal, who one-timed a low shot past Potvin's right pad.
The Lightning increased the margin to 2-0 on Afanasenkov's score with 17:08 left in the second period. Vincent Lecavalier had the puck behind the net and tried a wrap around, but Potvin deflected the puck away with his stick. The puck came out in front of the crease and Afanasenkov put in the rebound high over Potvin's shoulder for the goal.
Tampa Bay widened its advantage to 3-0 on Stillman's second goal of the game with 11:55 left in the middle period. Lecavalier skated down the right side and flipped a backhand feed in front of the net that Stillman wristed home for a power-play tally.
Richards' power-play score with 4:09 remaining in the second stanza made it a 4-0 contest. Richards, who was positioned in the right circle, received a pass from Stillman and he one-timed a shot that hit off the end of his stick that trickled by Potvin.
Boston was finally able to get on the scoreboard with 9:50 left in the third period. Brian Rolston dug the puck out of the corner and fed it to Mike Knuble behind the net. Knuble then centered a pass for Axelsson, who wristed a shot from the left circle by Khabibulin to bring the Bruins within 4-1.
Taylor made it 5-1 as he skated down the right side and lifted a backhand shot just under Raycroft's right shoulder with 7:27 left in the third.
LeCavalier and Richards each had two assists...Stillman's first goal was the fastest goal scored by a Lightning player in their home opener. Peter Klima had scored the fastest goal in a home opener when he scored 2:52 into the 1995-96 season home-opener...Tampa Bay was 3-for-7 on the power play, while Boston did not convert on any of its three chances with the extra skater...Tampa Bay won for only the third time in the last 13 meetings against Boston (3-7-3).
10/10 22:10:37 ET