The pair of Lightning linemates just keeps scoring.
Stamkos and Downie each had a goal to extend career-high point streaks, and Vincent Lecavalier scored twice as Tampa Bay roared back from a two-goal deficit in the third period, but fell in a resilient effort to the Southeast division rival Capitals 5-4 on Thursday at the Verizon Center.
“When you’re on a streak like this, you want to keep it rolling,” Stamkos said. I’ve stayed focused and I just take each game like it’s any other.”
Stamkos scored late in the third period to tie the game at four and to push the league’s longest active streak to 15 games, while Martin St. Louis recorded his 400th career assist on the goal.
Washington won for the 12th consecutive time at home, receiving two goals each from Mike Knuble and Scott Walker.
Eric Fehr also scored for the Capitals.
“We can’t be afraid to play,” Lightning head coach Rick Tocchet said. “You know, you can’t just play 40 minutes. You need to play 60.”
Fehr put Washington up 1-0 at 6:10 in the first period with a shot that went off of goaltender Mike Smith’s glove before redirecting into the back of the net.
Downie evened the score with the man advantage and prolonged his point streak to nine games on a tip-in after Kurtis Foster blasted a slap shot from the blue line that was deflected above the shoulder of Washington net minder Semyon Varlamov.
Knuble opened the middle frame by finishing off an odd-man rush with Brooks Laich just two minutes in, snapping a shot over the glove of Smith for a one-goal advantage.
The Capitals forward padded the lead after converting a rebound at the top of the crease to put Washington up 3-1, but Lecavalier cut the deficit to one just 42 seconds later on the power play.
“It was a play that me and Marty [St. Louis] had talked about,” Lecavalier said. “My plan was just to go to the net and it worked out.”
Downie nearly lit the lamp again midway through the final period but his shot from the side of the net glided along the goal line through the crease rather than crossing over it, allowing the Capitals to preserve the one-goal lead.
“It was nice to get back in the game. We were down one, but it was important to put some pressure on them,” Lecavalier added.
Tampa Bay did exactly that.
Both clubs traded four goals in just under three minutes halfway through the third, sparked by Walker’s shot that gave Washington a 4-2 lead at 10:11 in the period.
Lecavalier, however, answered back once again, this time within 24 seconds, to close the margin to one.
Stamkos knotted the game at four just under two minutes later with his 38th of the season, but Walker capped the win with his second of the night at 13:09 in his Capitals debut.
tampabaylightning.com is the official Web site of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Tampa Bay Lightning and tampabaylightning.com are trademarks of Lightning Hockey L.P. NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2013 Lightning Hockey, L.P. and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.