The Canes had their chances but never really found a rhythm, as Andrei Vasilevskiy posted a 29-save shutout that featured just a couple grade-A saves. For the Lightning, Tampa opened up a 2-0 lead in the second period with goals from Steven Stamkos and Brayden Point, before Point made it 3-0 in the third with Alex Killorn putting the final bow on the 4-0 win with the empty netter.
Pyotr Kochetkov had the net for the Canes, making just 18 saves on 21 shots faced. It’s hard to put too much of the blame on Kochetkov, though, as Point’s two goals were a weird bounce from behind the net that went off Kochetkov and in and then a rocket that hit the back bar. Still, a saveable goal from Stamkos opened the scoring and the floodgates for the Lightning.
The first period featured almost nothing in terms of shots on goal for either team, but Tampa opened it up in the second period. After the Canes technically killed a penalty, Stamkos scored in the immediate seconds, gliding one under Kochetkov’s pad. The Canes had a chance to even it up with a power play of their own, but it wasn’t good.
On the whole, the Canes were 0 for 2 on the power play, also failing to convert on a man advantage that spanned the end of the second period and beginning of the third. Carolina had plenty of good chances in the third period, actually finally taking the game to Tampa a little bit, but Vasilevskiy came up big before Point scored the dagger.
In another blow, Stefan Noesen also exited the game with an injury.
The Canes will finish March Thursday night in Detroit.