Despite a hard-fought loss on Wednesday night, the Tampa Bay Lightning are quickly becoming road warriors.
Tampa Bay, winners in three of the last five, gained a point for the ninth time in 11 games this season and maintained the NHL’s top position in the standings, albeit as a result of a 3-2 overtime loss to the Anaheim Ducks at the Honda Center.
“We knew they would come out hard,” Lightning defenseman Randy Jones said. “They’ve had a couple of losses coming in and they took it to us.”
Teemu Selanne opened scoring with the game’s first goal on the power play at 12:22, and Kyle Palmieri also scored for the Ducks. Ryan Getzlaf added the game-winner at 2:53 in the extra period.
Ellis, who entered the contest with a shutout streak of 113:35, finished with 27 saves.
Still, Tampa Bay did not go down without a fight, collecting points for the third consecutive game against the Ducks, including for the second straight time in Anaheim.
Tampa Bay erased a first-period one-goal deficit, tying the game at 2:38 in the second when Ryan Malone found Jones wide open near the right hash marks. Malone battled behind the net before corralling the puck along the boards and centering a feed to Jones, who buried a shot in the top corner over the shoulder of Ducks net minder Jonas Hiller.
“We had some good work down low, had some good pressure, and Malone did a good job of getting the puck to me,” Jones said. “It definitely felt good to contribute and get the boys get back in the game, for sure.”
Stamkos put the Lightning ahead on the man advantage with his 10th of the season, beating Hiller at 0:21 in the third, but Palmieri countered with the first goal of his NHL career as he shot into a wide open net, making it 2-2 with just four minutes remaining in regulation to send the contest into overtime.
Getzlaf ended it nearly three minutes into overtime, wristing one from the slot past Ellis after taking a wrap-around centering feed from behind the net.
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