Matt Iaboni November 9, 2010
St. Pete Times Fourm
With a struggling power play, the Leafs had a great chance to get on the board first with a two-man advantage for 48 seconds just over two minutes into the game but they didn't get a scoring chance.
The Lightning jumped on their power play opportunity as Steven Stamkos scored his 12th of the year. Just 29 seconds later, Nate Thompson found the bouncing puck before J.S. Giguere or any other Leaf could for the 2-0 Tampa Bay lead and they never looked back.
Markham native Steven Stamkos continued his hot start to the season. He scored his league leading 12th and 13th goals, the first on the power play which gives him six for the year which also leads the NHL.
Stamkos and linemate Martin St. Louis have been electric in the early going. They have combined for 39 points in the first 14 games and their chemistry was evident all night. Both players had numerous chances throughout the game as the Leafs had no answer for the duo.
It was a tough night for many Maple Leafs and although he allowed four goals, J.S. Giguere made several big stops to give the Leafs a chance to get back in the game but the offence wasn't there.
Giguere has been solid this season, he has lost his last four starts despite allowing just 12 goals over that span. He couldn't be faulted for any of the goals as they were excellent scoring chances or defensive breakdowns from the Leafs blueline.
Coming into the game, the Lightning were one of the top teams in shot blocks and that was evident Tuesday.
When the Leafs' defencemen had the puck in the offensive zone, Tampa Bay would collapse to the front of th net and their forwards would do a great job of getting in the shooting lanes. It was a problem all night for the Leafs as they had 22 shots blocked and was a reason that they couldn't get to loose pucks or rebounds.
Ron Wilson on missing the 5-on-3 and Tampa's winning goal:
"This league is about scoring first so we passed up a great opportunity. The 5-on-3 I don't believe we generated a scoring chance. We had a great one in the 5-on-4 with a rebound to Phil ... then we get a penalty and don't get the kill. Again, a turnover in our zone. We should have cleared the puck. They work it around. We didn't get in the shooting lane on (Steven) Stamkos and it's 1-0 and we're back on our heels."
Wednesday, November 10 at Florida
7:30 PM ET (TSN, AM640)
The Leafs close out the back-to-back with their second game this season against the Panthers.
The first meeting had some controversy as the Panthers weren't happy with Colton Orr's goal when he knocked over Scott Clemmensen.